The AIFC Court and International Arbitration Centre (IAC) continue to go from strength to strength and are now firmly recognised by their users as being the number one choice in Eurasia for international commercial dispute resolution that is independent, impartial, applying the highest international standards of the rule of law.
By 7 June 2023 the AIFC Court and IAC had completed and enforced 2,174 cases, including 64 AIFC Court Judgments, 415 arbitration awards, and 1,695 mediation settlements. The case volume growth has increased in 2023 with 533 cases completed and enforced since 1 January 2023, i.e. 24.5% of the total number of cases since operations commenced on 1 January 2018.
Of particular note is that in 97.7% of the total number of cases the Parties had business in Kazakhstan and agreed to use the AIFC Court and IAC on an “opt-in” basis, applying Kazakhstani law in 97.5% of the cases, AIFC law in 2.3% of the cases, and other laws including English law. Most types of commercial matters were considered and included contracts (typically non payment and non fulfilment of other contract obligations) (43.8%), construction (15.8%), employment (15%), company (10.5%), transportation (6%), property (4%), logistics (3%), and PPP (2%).
The highest value claimed in a case was USD 330 million and the majority of the cases involved claims in the multi millions of USD. 48% of the cases involved a foreign / non-Kazakh investor with business in Kazakhstan and case Parties came from 23 countries including most Eurasian countries and other key Kazakhstan key trading partners such as China, UAE, and India.
75% of IAC arbitral tribunal appointed arbitrators were women and 80% of the AIFC Court and IAC staff were women, supporting the “AIFC Court and IAC Diversity Initiative”.
500 lawyers from 30 countries (32 jurisdictions) from 6 continents registered with the AIFC Court for rights of audience to represent Parties in cases at the AIFC Court.
Investors are increasingly recognising the AIFC Court and IAC, and the safeguards they provide for the protection of investor legal rights, when deciding whether to invest in Kazakhstan.
During the Astana Finance Day 2023 activities, which happened on 7 June 2023, the AIFC Court and IAC launched three new initiatives to enhance outreach with their users and their contribution to the continual improvement of the attractiveness of Kazakhstan as a commercial dispute resolution and investment hub:
Mr. Alexander Korobeinikov, Partner at Baker McKenzie law firm, and a Member of the AIFC Court and IAC Users’ Committee, commented:
“The case statistics and outreach work of the AIFC Court and IAC is remarkable at this still very early stage of operations. Our clients increasingly trust the AIFC Court and IAC in business contracts as the premier international dispute resolution institutions in Eurasia. Of particular note is that in 97.7% of the cases the Parties used the AIFC Court’s and IAC’s ‘opt-in’ jurisdiction and had business in Kazakhstan and the wider Eurasia region. Our clients, and the investment community, understand the significance of the AIFC Court and IAC to Kazakhstan as an investment hub for Eurasia. Investors can be confident, and are increasingly aware and trust, that the AIFC Court and IAC protect the legal rights of investors with guaranteed independence, impartiality, and apply the highest international standards of the rule of law. This safeguard bodes well for future investors coming to Kazakhstan.”
Mr. Christopher Campbell-Holt, the Registrar and Chief Executive of the AIFC Court and IAC, commented:
“We are delighted that the AIFC Court and IAC are increasingly trusted by investors as safe institutions for commercial dispute resolution that is expeditious, cost-effective, reliable, and always applies the highest international standards of the rule of law. As case volume has continued to increase significantly we are earning a reputation with investors, including well known global corporations, as being the place to come in Eurasia for independent and impartial international standard commercial dispute resolution.”
The Astana International Financial Centre (AIFC) is an independent jurisdiction with a favourable legal and regulatory environment and a developed infrastructure for starting and doing business, attracting investment, creating jobs and developing Kazakhstan's economy. www.aifc.kz
The AIFC Court is an independent legal entity. It has its own procedural rules modelled on English common law procedures and leading international practice. The AIFC Court is separate and independent from the courts of the Republic of Kazakhstan. It consists of two tiers: a Court of First Instance, which includes a specialist division known as the Small Claims Court; and a Court of Appeal. It has exclusive jurisdiction over disputes arising out of the activities and operations of the AIFC and jurisdiction in the case of other disputes in which all parties agree in writing to give the AIFC Court jurisdiction. It does not have jurisdiction in relation to disputes that are of a criminal or administrative nature. It applies the most up to date and efficient case management practices. https://court.aifc.kz/
The International Arbitration Centre (IAC) is an independent legal entity. It has its own procedural rules modelled on best international practice. It has its own panel of leading international arbitrators and mediators having many years of arbitration and mediation experience in commercial law, including oil and gas, trade, construction, energy, financial services, banking, Islamic finance, insurance, and intellectual property. IAC arbitration awards are recognised and enforceable in Kazakhstan and internationally. https://iac.aifc.kz/
Media Contacts: Ms. Asel Turmanova, Director of Communications and Events, AIFC Court and IAC, Phone: +7 (7172) 64 72 51, email: [email protected]