Launch of a study on energy disputes and recourse to arbitration

Opinions are gathered through a surveywhich it is hoped will provide an overview of the main causes and types of energy conflicts and the main risks and challenges facing the energy sector in the short to medium term.

The survey asks whether arbitration will continue to serve its purpose as the primary forum for resolving cross-border energy disputes and what alternatives might be appropriate, as well as what changes participants would like to make the process more economical and accessible.

Other questions relate to the impact, risks and challenges of climate change and the energy transition on business activity and litigation in the energy sector, while responses from respondents are also solicited on how the invasion of Ukraine could affect the global energy mix and how sanctions impact major energy projects and energy-related arbitrations.

The investigation will also cover third-party financing and investor-state arbitration.

Jason Hambury, International Arbitration Expert at Pinsent Masons, said: “The international energy industry is the biggest user of international arbitration. We want to know what the industry expects from arbitrage in this era of market instability and unforeseen circumstances.

“There is no doubt that the causes of energy conflicts are changing rapidly and the number of conflicts is increasing exponentially, not least because of the urgency to address energy transition, energy supply and energy security, including issues related to the Russian-Ukrainian crisis,” he said.

In addition to parties to energy-related arbitrations, the survey is aimed at litigation practitioners, arbitrators, academics, experts and arbitration institutions. The survey is open until October 12.

This year’s survey is the 13th international arbitration survey conducted by Queen Mary University of London. The survey will be supplemented by individual interviews with a selection of survey participants and the results of the study will be announced in January 2023.

Loukas Mistelis, a Queen Mary professor leading the study, said: “We hope to collect quantitative and qualitative data to inform us about trends relating to the future of energy disputes and to capture user concerns and expectations. of arbitration. The interaction between academia and legal practice is not only desirable, but is also essential so that academic research can have a significant impact and can be directed to areas where traditional research does not reach.

Denise W. Whigham