Intellectual composition of arbitral tribunals according to the new Saudi arbitration law
PublisherBrill Academic Publishers
SourcetitleArab Law Quarterly
One significant feature of arbitration that distinguishes it from litigation in national courts, is the parties' freedom to select the arbitrator or members of the arbitral tribunal familiar with the kind of dispute that might arise or already has arisen. In 2012, a new arbitration law was issued in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) inspired by the texts of the Model Law on International Commercial Arbitration. In all its provisions it included the requirement not to violate Shar?'ah law (Islamic legal tradition). However, according to this law, the sole arbitrator or presiding arbitrator must hold a Bachelor of Laws (LLB) or Shar?'ah law degree. This provision is mandatory, and the parties cannot agree otherwise. This article seeks to provide some thoughts on this restriction through an analysis of arbitrator qualifications under Shar?'ah law in order to provide a better understanding of the position adopted by the KSA Arbitration Law. � 2018 by Koninklijke Brill NV, Leiden, The Netherlands.