Could thou and I with Fate conspire
To grasp this sorry Scheme of Things entire,
Would not we shatter it to bits and then
Re-mould it nearer to the Heart’s desire! Omar Kayyàm, Rubaiy’at (Edward Fitzgerald translation)
These are the beautiful and strong words that introduce the last chapter of Mr. Gharavi’s book. Mr. Gharavi chose these words well for what he embarks to propose indeed comes close to a shattering and re-moulding of what he views as a “sorry Scheme of Things entire” – the international enforcement regime for foreign arbitral awards. Whether or not the book leaves the reader convinced, Mr. Gharavi’s erudite yet passionate writing will certainly provide new perspectives and should be of interest to all practitioners and scholars in the field of international commercial arbitration.
The popularity of arbitration today as a means for the settlement of international disputes comes with a complexity of its legal mechanisms. As pointed out by Professor Charles Jarrosson in his preface to Mr. Gharavi’s book, the arbitration community’s attention is no longer limited to the enforcement of foreign arbitral awards, but is also on the enforcement of decisions of foreign domestic courts on annulment actions brought against these awards.
At the time of Mr. Gharavi’s book’s publication, the New York Convention on the Recognition and Enforcement of Foreign Arbitral Awards of 19581 had nearly 130 signatory States. Due to the success of the New York Convention and other legal instruments, a foreign award today may be enforced in the courts of a multitude of jurisdictions.