The Vienna International Arbitral Centre (VIAC) recently obtained the right to administer domestic cases.

The VIAC was established in 1975 as part of the Federal Economic Chamber. Historically, the handling of arbitration cases was divided among the VIAC and nine provincial arbitration centres, established for each of the nine Austrian states. The VIAC was permitted to accept only international cases (ie, cases which involved at least one international party or were of an international character). Domestic cases were handled by the nine provincial arbitration centres. As of June 20 2017 a revision to the Act on the Federal Economic Chamber became effective,(1) which now also gives the VIAC the ability to administer purely domestic cases.

The new law has received a warm welcome in Austria and is another sign of the quality of the VIAC's work and the confidence in its services.

The VIAC has already established a working group to implement the proposed changes into the Vienna Rules of Arbitration and Mediation in order to reflect this positive development.

For further information on this topic please contact Nikolaus Pitkowitz at Graf & Pitkowitz by telephone (+43 1 401 17 0) or email ([email protected]). The Graf & Pitkowitz website can be accessed at www.gpp.at.

Endnotes

(1) Federal Law Gazette 73, BGBL 2017, June 13 2017.