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Article III of the New York Convention expresses the Contracting States’ core obligation under the Convention, namely the obligation to enforce Convention awards, absent a basis in the Convention for declining to do so. At the same time, the Convention drafters chose not to prescribe the manner in which such enforcement should take place. Article III expressly reserved the matter to the law of the place where enforcement under the Convention is sought.

Enforcement was to be achieved “in accordance with the rules of procedure of the territory where the award is relied upon.” The only limitations on the freedom of Contracting States in this regard is that they may not impose “substantially more onerous conditions or higher fees or charges on the recognition or enforcement of arbitral awards to which this Convention applies than are imposed on the recognition or enforcement of domestic arbitral awards.”

Article III raises two fundamental questions. The first is simply a matter of treaty construction. What rules qualify as “rules of procedure” for Article III purposes? The second and related question is precisely what limits, if any, does the Convention impose on Contracting States in the exercise of their procedural latitude under Article III.


Dispute Resolution and Arbitration | Law


Reprinted from "Autonomous Versus Domestic Concepts Under the New York Convention," 2021, pp. 55-78, with permission of Kluwer Law International.