Why Arbitrate in ADGM

ADGM stands out as a leader in the arbitration community with its modern pro-arbitration framework that has been modelled on the UNCITRAL Model Law.  This framework is superbly complimented by the ADGM Arbitration Centre (ADGMAC) which is equipped with state-of-the-art technology and hearing facilities and supported by outstanding infrastructure.  Together, they provide the ideal forum for parties to resolve their arbitral disputes. 


There are many reasons why parties should choose ADGM as the place to resolve their arbitration disputes.  These include:  

  • Flexibility:  ADGMAC is not an arbitral institution and does not have any exclusive tie-ups with any arbitral institution or set of rules. ADGM’s arbitration framework reflects the consensual nature of arbitration and allows parties to choose the institution and/or rules which will apply to their arbitration.  In selecting ADGM as the place of arbitration, this gives parties great flexibility to tailor-make the framework of the arbitration that best suits their needs.

  • Progressive arbitration framework:  ADGM’s Arbitration Regulations are based on the UNCITRAL Model Law, with tailored enhancements, including:

  • enhanced confidentiality provisions

  • the ability to contract out of the right to apply to set aside an award, and

  • consolidation and joinder provisions

  • Pro-arbitration judiciary:  Where the legal place of the arbitration is ADGM, ADGM Courts have a supervisory role under ADGM’s arbitration framework. ADGM Courts’ common law judges all come from jurisdictions which have an established track record of strongly supporting the arbitral process (England & Wales, Hong Kong, Australia and New Zealand).

  • Neutral venue: ADGM is a truly neutral and independent venue which adopts best-practice standards recognised by the international arbitration community.

  • Location: ADGM is strategically situated along the Belt and Road with Asia, Africa and Europe on its doorstep.

  • World class hearing facilities:  ADGMAC is a bespoke arbitration hearing facility which gives parties access to a fully digitised service and is unique in the space, comfort and ease of working that it provides.

  • ICC Representative Office: The International Court of Arbitration has established its first MENA representative office in ADGM, which facilitates ICC-administered arbitration proceedings in the region.  However, as mentioned above, there is no restriction on parties choosing another arbitral institution to administer their arbitration within ADGM.

  • Enforcement: ADGM arbitral awards are enforceable under: the New York Convention in more than 150 countries; multi-lateral and bilateral treaties with certain countries; and memoranda of understanding with leading international common law jurisdictions. 

  • Innovation: ADGM as an international financial centre is at the forefront of recognising the importance of digital innovation. It has been recognised as “FinTech Regulator of 2018” by Seamless and it became the first jurisdiction in the MENA region to start licensing Fintech firms, with ADGM’s “RegLab” being the second most active regulatory sandbox globally, after the London FCA sandbox. ADGM also introduced the world’s first comprehensive regulatory regime in relation to spot trading of Crypto Assets, with a best-in-class framework to address the full range of risks associated with crypto asset activities.

  • Outstanding infrastructure:   ADGMAC is centrally located on Al Maryah Island in Abu Dhabi and is within close proximity to two international hotels, along with a selection of restaurants, eateries, a modern retail mall and lifestyle amenities.

  • Third Party Funding:  Third Party Funding is permitted in relation to arbitration proceedings conducted in ADGM.

  • Belt and Road Disputes

    The Belt and Road initiative (or Belt and Road) encapsulates China’s goal of developing two major trade routes connecting Europe, Africa and Asia: the overland and historical Silk Road Economic Belt and the more recent Maritime Silk Road.  The Belt and Road initiative has championed Chinese outbound investment in large-scale energy, rail, road and telecommunications projects resulting in numerous cross-border infrastructure projects and commercial transactions.  Given ADGM’s strategic geographical location, it is a perfect choice for parties with a Belt and Road connection to resolve their disputes.