In a globalized world, where international trade and investment flows have facilitated economic growth, generated development, increased competition and created new businesses, we have also witnessed the emergence of effective and efficient mechanisms for resolving conflicts. In this regard, there are many reasons that explain the suitability of arbitration as a useful tool to peacefully settle disputes. These also explain its growth to become one of the most sought-after alternative dispute resolution mechanisms.
When I was a law student, I remember being taught that one of the characteristics that made arbitration such an attractive mechanism to resolve disputes was, among others, its confidentiality.
This, of course, makes sense when we think about commercial disputes. These types of disagreements, which for the most part only involve private parties doing business with each other, generally only affect them. It is therefore logical that they would favor a dispute resolution mechanism different from local courts which provided the possibility of keeping the details of such controversy private, including in some cases the very fact they had a dispute.
When the use of arbitration extended, it was not only private companies and individuals using it for their contractual disagreements, but also States and public entities. The scope of disputes expanded to include those which involved not only private interests. Thus, it became necessary to tailor certain provisions that consider the nature of these disputes as they involve matters of public interest and government policy that are not necessarily present in a commercial dispute between two private parties. With this, a trend toward transparency in arbitration began to emerge.