MANAGING CROSS-BORDER DISPUTES IN LATIN AMERICA
CD: Reflecting on the last 12-18 months, how would you characterise the level of cross-border commercial disputes arising in Latin America? To what extent have you seen an increase?
Mantilla-Serrano: There has been a steady increase in cross-border commercial disputes being brought before international fora. This increase is reflected in the growing number of parties from Latin America involved in commercial arbitration cases administered by international arbitration institutions, such as the Court of Arbitration of the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC). In 2017, for example, Latin American parties represented 15.8 percent of the cases administered by the ICC. In reaction to this increasing importance, the ICC opened a case management office in Sao Paulo in 2017. Another indicator of this growing internationalisation of commercial disputes in Latin America is the rapid development of regional arbitration institutions, which are becoming increasingly popular.
Boettcher: I do not know the figures but we note an increasing number of big cross-border projects involving multinational companies that have ended up or may end up in a cross-border dispute.
Bédard: The level of cross-border disputes in Latin America continues to rise. In addition to commercial disputes between companies, we have also seen a significant uptick in multijurisdictional disputes arising out of corruption and other investigations related to many major Latin American companies. These investigations often lead to collateral suits in many countries, including securities litigations for Latin American companies that offer securities on US exchanges, including alternative dispute resolution (ADR) issuers. I would say that we are on the tail-end of such disputes with respect to Brazil, but new foyers have developed in Peru and Argentina.
Oct-Dec 2018 issue
Latham & Watkins
Marval O’Farrell & Mairal
Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP