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London leads in maritime arbitration

18th Feb 2021

Set out below is a precis of some good news concerning the health of London Arbitrations which has been produced by the LMAA and The International Law firm HFW. To see the full reports click here.


London leads in maritime arbitration – again

London dominates the world of maritime arbitration. In 2020 members of the London Maritime Arbitrators Association (the “LMAA”) received 3,010 appointments – more than in any year since 2015. At a time when other venues are trying hard to compete with London, often with significant government backing, and when there is much talk about the impact of Brexit, it is heartening that London has maintained its very commanding lead over all other venues in this sector. The LMAA represents the world’s leading group of maritime arbitrators. It has over 800 full and supporting members who handle over 1,700 new cases resulting in over 500 awards each year.

The London Court of International Arbitration (LCIA) has also recently announced a significant increase in registered cases in 2020 (2020: 444 compared with 406 in 2019).

There is belief the same is also true of the main London based commodity arbitration body, the Grain and Feed Trades Association (GAFTA). GAFTA recorded an average of 799 cases annually between 2014 and 2018.

In very many cases both (or in multiparty arbitrations all) parties are foreign entities which choose to have their disputes dealt with in London arbitration. They come from a wide variety of countries (including Russia, China, India and many European and African countries) and from different commercial sectors: banking, finance, shipping commodities and construction.

Additionally a high proportion of international investment disputes are decided in London-seated arbitrations.