1. Use of commercial arbitration and recent trends
Arbitration is the most commonly used method to settle disputes in complex international business relationships, which often deal with significant financial issues in cross-border disputes. Albania can be classified as one of the arbitration-friendly countries. It is a party to some of the most influential international conventions like New York Convention on Recognition and Enforcement of Foreign Arbitral Awards, European Convention On the Recognition and Enforcement of Foreign Arbitral Awards, and the ICSID Convention all of which significantly contribute to the facilitation of the process of recognition and enforcement of foreign and international awards by Albanian courts.
2. Applicable legislation on arbitration
Albania has not yet adopted the UNCITRAL Model Law to enact legislation on international arbitration, despite numerous drafting attempts initiated by Ministry of Justice to pave the way for such legislation into Albania Parliament. Currently the Code of Civil Procedure (CCP) regulates in essence arbitration proceedings of a domestic character, i.e. arbitrations where disputant parties are domiciles or have their seats in Albania, or place of arbitration has been agreed by parties to be Albania.
Articles 444 et sequence of the CCP provide the scope of arbitration under Albanian law.
3. Arbitration Agreement / Mandatory legislative provisions
As per Albanian CCP, the parties enjoy a broad freedom to design and tailor their arbitration agreement and ensuing proceedings as per their needs and expectations by way of electing the number of arbitrators, the method of their nomination or appointment, applicable law, seat of arbitration, respective waivers from appeals, etc.
In the absence of the parties consent on above aspects of arbitration agreement, the CCP provides default rules on the assisting and supervisory powers of courts in support of arbitration such as: the appointment of party appointed arbitrators or third arbitrators, declaring the inability of arbitrators to perform their duties, or their discharge from their duties, enforcement of interim reliefs or provisional measures, determination of applicable law and seat of arbitration, etc.
However, some provisions of the CCP are mandatory in their nature and they extend to the pre-arbitration phase, during arbitration and post-arbitration proceedings. The most notable examples of such provisions are the following: