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Extraordinary Resource on UNCITRAL Model Law and Commentary on Latest Amendments to Malaysian Arbitration Act in 2018

The latest series of books published by Prof Datuk Sundra Rajoo, was launched recently in January 2019 making it one of best resource for practitioners and users of international arbitration. “This book is a significant contribution to the study of the UNCITRAL Model Law on International Commercial Arbitration and the UNCITRAL Arbitration Rules,” foreword by Alexis Mourre, President International Court of Arbitration.

The UNCITRAL Model Law
The UNCITRAL Model Law on International Commercial Arbitration remains the most important legislative template instrument in the field of international commercial arbitration. It has been adopted wholesale or enacted in modified form in a growing number of jurisdictions.

It has also served as a model for legislation and judicial decisions in many others. For example, the English Arbitration Act 1996, although rooted in English common law, seems to mimic in parts the provisions of the UNCITRAL Model Law. However, the English Arbitration Act is not considered as an enactment of the UNCITRAL Model Law.

The noteworthy highlights of UNCITRAL Model Law which this Book expounds upon in great detail in context of Malaysian Arbitration jurisprudence are:

  1. The principal revisions in 2006 are Article 2, Article 7, Article 17 and Article 35 of the UNCITRAL Model Law. These were useful improvements. The real achievement by the revisions was that the States and business representatives were committed to improving the international legal regime for the arbitral process.
  2. The UNCITRAL Model Law and its revisions represent a significant step, beyond the New York Convention, towards the development of a predictable “pro-arbitration” legal framework for commercial arbitration.
  3. It moves beyond the Convention by prescribing in greater detail the legal framework for international arbitration. In so doing, it clarified the ambiguities and disagreements under the New York Convention, which was made applicable by curial legislation.
  4. As enunciated in the Explanatory Note to the UNCITRAL Model Law by the UN Secretariat, “the Model Law constitutes a sound and promising basis for the desired harmonisation and improvement of national laws”.17 It covers the key aspects of the arbitral process and reflects international consensus regarding the main principles of international arbitration, aiming at abolishing national idiosyncrasies in international arbitration.
  5. The UNCITRAL Model Law has enjoyed wide acceptance and has been implemented in 78 States in a total of 111 jurisdictions, with domestic legislation taking guidance and directions from UNCITRAL Model Law provisions. This has resulted in increasing harmonisation of arbitration laws across the world. In Asia, the UNCITRAL Model Law has also been adopted by many countries.

The book is published by Thomson Reuters Asia Sdn Bhd, in 2019.

Datuk Prof Sundra Rajoo

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