Draft International Arbitration Bill in Parliament Soon

Department of Justice and Constitutional Development

The Draft International Arbitration Bill will be tabled in parliament soon.

The justice and constitutional development department published the draft bill’s explanatory summary in Government Gazette 40687.

The proposed legislation seeks to:

•    provide for the incorporation of the Model Law on International Commercial Arbitration, as adopted by the United Nations Commission on International Trade Law, into South African law;
•    provide anew for the recognition and enforcement of foreign arbitral awards;
•    repeal the Recognition and Enforcement of Foreign Arbitral Awards Act, 1977;
•    amend the Protection of Businesses Act, 1978, so as to delete an expression; and
•    provide for matters connected there with.

The 2017 version is not yet available.

Meanwhile, the portfolio committee on justice and correctional services has extended the comment period for the Judicial Matters Amendment Bill.

Comment was originally called until 15 March 2017.

The bill proposes changes to a raft of acts including the Magistrates’ Courts Act, the State Liability Act, the Criminal Procedure Act, the Attorneys Act and the Sheriffs Act.

Some of the proposals include further regulating the benefits of magistrates who are required to dispose of proceedings which were not disposed of on vacation of the office of magistrate, further regulating the service of court process, giving the Rules Board for Courts of Law the power to make rules regulating various aspects in respect of small claims courts, providing for the transfer of certain moneys in the trust accounts of sheriffs to the Fidelity Fund for sheriffs, assisting impecunious litigants with the payment of costs for the execution of small claims court judgments and further regulating the electronic transmission of summonses, writs and other process.

The draft bill was published for comment in April 2016.

Comment is now invited until 24 March 2017.

Sabinet Cape Town Office

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