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NAI Newsletter 2020-11

Message from the Chair

It gives me great pleasure to introduce this NAI Newsletter and to draw your attention to the contents thereof, which reflect the many activities of the NAI in these turbulent times.


In the first place, I am very happy to mention that the number of NAI arbitrations is still increasing, in particular also the number of cases with a high value in dispute.


On a related note, and as you will be able to learn from this Newsletter, the NAI has been actively involved the past months in connection with its user base. We continue to see that in the midst of a global pandemic, parties, counsel, and arbitrators are looking for guidance in terms of cost efficient and time affective dispute resolution. The NAI has undertaken a number of measures and activities to meet those demands. And we have more exciting developments coming up, which are also announced in this Newsletter.


One exciting development is that we have grown the team and attracted a Director Business Operations, Mr. Tomas Vaal. Tomas previously worked as a senior associate with a highly reputable law firm in the Netherlands. As part of his role, Tomas will focus on the further development, organization and implementation of the plans aimed at increasing existing business and seizing new opportunities in specific sector related fields as well as focus on the ICT reform processes within the NAI. We are most delighted to have Tomas on board.


Moreover, we now have a new Administrator, Mirjam Trouw. Mirjam joined the NAI in 2009 as Legal Counsel. Since then, Mirjam has taken the position of Deputy Administrator. She will now take the position of Administrator. I take this opportunity to welcome Mirjam in her new role!


I also take the opportunity to express great gratitude to Ms. Charlotte van Maanen for her tremendous work for the NAI for more than thirteen years, first as Deputy Administrator and later as Administrator. Charlotte is known for her very friendly and pleasant way of cooperation, but also for her persistence and preciseness. We were sorry to see Charlotte leave and are thankful for her many contributions. Charlotte is taking a short sabbatical first and will then take on a new position, which she is exploring at the moment. We wish her all the success in her future endeavors.


Additionally, and for the coming two years, Camilla will be factually based in Zürich, due to her spouse relocating for professional reasons, from where she will continue to lead the organization. This development brings with it an opportunity to market the NAI both in the Netherlands as well as across borders and to develop both our national agenda as well as our international agenda more clearly. Since the beginning of the pandemic, Camilla has steered the working processes reform to move the NAI Bureau from a physical to a virtual working environment. For as long as required under the COVID-19 restrictions, the Bureau now operates fully remotely. This has made the transition for Camilla to work with the team from Zürich efficient and uncomplicated. Camilla will be in the Rotterdam offices of the NAI on a frequent basis during her two year stay in Zürich, and she is expected to return to the Netherlands on a full time basis as per September 2022.


Finally, I wish to invite the new generation of people focusing on arbitration to apply for the available position of Legal Counsel at the NAI, the details of which are included below in this Newsletter.


Prof. Dr. Gerard Meijer
President of the Executive Board of the Netherlands Arbitration Institute


We are Hiring: Legal Counsel

The NAI is hiring a Legal Counsel to join the case management divisions at the NAI Secretariat.


The Secretariat handles the administration of arbitration proceedings. It continuously seeks to improve efficiency by offering innovative new arbitration tools and procedures. The Secretariat’s staff also organizes trainings and events, speaks at public events, conducts research and publishes articles.


If you have a Dutch law degree, preferably with international experience gained through an exchange program or an additional LL.M. from a foreign university, and approx. 3 years of relevant experience at a law firm, preferably in an international practice with a focus on arbitration or litigation, or with the courts, and you are fluent in Dutch and in English (writing, reading, speaking): we are looking for you! Join us! For more information, please visit our vacancies page.


Upcoming Events

Revised 2021 NAI Rules

The NAI Arbitration Rules 2015 are currently under review. The 2021 Rules are expected to be launched by 1 March 2021. The changes will include a number of progressive and forward thinking amendments to meet the increasing needs of arbitrators, counsel and parties with respect to the time efficient and cost efficient administration of cases. Watch this space, as more information will be announced in the near future.


The Court of Arbitration for Art (CAfA) inaugural webinar: Dispute Resolution In The Art World

19 November 2020 – 1:00 – 2:15 PM CET (Zoom)


Join leading alternative dispute resolution and art law experts from around the world for an interactive discussion on dispute resolution in the art world. What are the difficulties of litigating art disputes in national courts? What expertise is required to determine the authenticity of an artwork? How can the market acceptability of the outcome of art disputes be increased? These and other topics at the intersection of art and law will be discussed by our panelists, including colorful examples from their practices.



Panelists include Jean-François Canat, Founding partner at UGGC Avocats, Paris; Yu-Jin Tay, Partner at Mayer Brown, Singapore; Judith Wallace, Managing partner at Carter Ledyard & Milburn LLP, New York; Martin Wilson, Chief General Counsel at Phillips Auctioneers, London

Moderator: Camilla Perera-De Wit, Secretary General / Director General at the Netherlands Arbitration Institute; board member of CAfA

Registration (free of charge): https://zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_mFkM74o7QIGLPFRz-P547A


NAI / DAA 2020 Virtual Hearing Guidelines

The 2020 NAI/DAA Virtual Hearing Guidelines will be published later this month. Watch this space for detailed guidelines on conducting a virtual hearing under a Dutch seat in (international) arbitration.


Course Institutional Arbitration - Erasmus University School of Law

On 4 December, Secretary General / Director General Camilla Perera de Wit will conduct a workshop for international LL.M. students on institutional arbitration, as part of an extra-curricular session to the "Fundamentals of International Arbitration and Business Law" course, at the Erasmus University School of Law in Rotterdam.


Young NAI New Years’ event 2021

Young NAI is pleased to announce the NAI and Young NAI New Year’s event which will take place on Thursday 14 January 2021. During this event, the revisions in light of the 2021 Arbitration Rules will get discussed. This event will be hosted by Allen & Overy LLP Amsterdam. More information to follow; please save the date!


The Young NAI committee consists of the following members: Max Hetterscheidt, attorney at law at Stek, Amsterdam; Nadir Khalil, attorney at law at Allen & Overy LLP, Amsterdam; Fleur Potter, attorney at law at Van Doorne N.V., Amsterdam; Pauline Ribbers, PhD-fellow at Leiden University; Jonathan Ruff, attorney at law at Loyens & Loeff N.V., Rotterdam; and Mirjam Trouw, administrator at the NAI, Rotterdam.


Recent Events

The Netherlands Arbitration Institute hires Director Business Operations and appoints new Administrator

The Netherlands Arbitration Institute is delighted to announce the hire of Tomas Vaal as its Director Business Operations and the appointment of Mirjam Trouw as the new Administrator. Mirjam succeeds Charlotte van Maanen in this position, who recently stepped down as Administrator.


Tomas Vaal previously worked as a senior associate at a highly reputable law firm in the Netherlands. Tomas has specialized in international arbitration and has been involved in arbitration proceedings under a variety of rules (NAI, ICC, LCIA, UNCITRAL, UNUM, and the Arbitration Board for the Construction Industry) as well as in arbitration related state court proceedings, in particular regarding the enforcement and setting aside proceedings of arbitral awards. Tomas is individually mentioned in The Global Arbitration Review 100 - The Guide to Specialist International Arbitration Practices 2019 and 2020, and described as strategic and smart. Tomas will also be Acting Administrator. He will join the NAI as per 1 November 2020.


Mirjam Trouw joined the NAI in 2009 as Legal Counsel. Since then, Mirjam has taken the position of Deputy Administrator. She will now take the position of Administrator.


Administrator Mirjam Trouw to join the ERA Pledge Young Practitioners Subcommittee 

In June, Administrator Mirjam Trouw was invited to join this illustrious group, where she will represent the NAI in actively supporting the goal of the Pledge. On 25 October 2016 the NAI signed ‘The Pledge’, which seeks to increase, on an equal opportunity basis, the number of women appointed as arbitrators in order to achieve a fair representation as soon as practically possible, with the ultimate goal of full parity. The NAI is committed to enhancing all forms of diversity in international arbitration, and as such will actively seek to play a role in improving the rate of female appointments.


Tomas Vaal

Mirjam Trouw

NAI Secretary General / Director General Camilla Perera de Wit to win Lawyer Monthly Women in Law Award 2020 – Commercial Arbitration - the Netherlands!

We could not be more delighted and proud to have Camilla win this award, especially since this is a WOMEN in law awards! The Women in Law Awards are a global celebration of excellence in the profession across private practice, the public sector, commerce and industry, and the Bar.


“In recognition of your outstanding legal expertise and contribution within the practice area of Commercial Arbitration”;

“The research team has highlighted a number of your achievements over the last 18 months.”


NAI / Young NAI Webinar: ‘Commercial Arbitration In Times of COVID-19: The Ability to Adapt’

This event, which took place on 18 June 2020, was aimed at sharing best practices and experiences on COVID-19 related consequences in commercial arbitration. A panel of experts explored several topics such as (i) the ability to adapt - doing what needs to be done: views from the institute, arbitrator and counsel, (ii) virtual hearings: key considerations, (iii) challenges and opportunities that emerge from COVID-19, (iv) looking beyond COVID-19.


Speakers included Melanie van Leeuwen, partner, Derains & Gharavi (Paris); Bregje Korthals Altes, Board member, the Netherlands Arbitration Institute; partner, Ysquare (Amsterdam); Pauline Ernste, senior associate, NautaDutilh (Rotterdam); Max van Leyenhorst, partner, Legaltree (Leiden). The session was moderated by Prof. dr. Gerard Meijer, President, the Netherlands Arbitration Institute; partner, Linklaters (Amsterdam) and Camilla Perera de Wit, Secretary General / Director General, the Netherlands Arbitration Institute. The session was well attended with 150 participants from across the globe.


NAI Webinar “In Conversation with”: Juan Fernando Armesto and Albert Jan van de Berg on: “The Examination of Fact Witnesses and Expert Witnesses Through Virtual Means.” 

A fireside chat and a dialogue between leading figures on the latest topical issues. On 27 August 2020, Albert Jan van den Berg and Juan Fernando Armesto shared personal stories and sharing of best practices on the topic of the Examination of Fact Witnesses and Expert Witnesses Through Virtual Means. The session was well attended with over 150 attendees from across the global. The audience were engaged in a lively discussion with the speakers, whereby many questions were addressed during the session.


Virtual Arbitration Seminar at KPN

On 22 October 2020, Friederike Schäfer, Counsel, the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) and Camilla Perera de Wit, Secretary General / Director General, Netherlands Arbitration Institute, jointly presented at a virtual arbitration seminar at KPN. Their presentation covered topics such as institutional vs ad hoc arbitration, ADR vs litigation and special features of the NAI Arbitration rules and ICC Arbitration rules. We would like to thank KPN for the invitation.


Erasmus School of Law Career Day 2020

On 23 October 2020, Secretary General / Director General Camilla Perera de Wit was invited by Erasmus School of Law to talk with students about globalization, international arbitration and diversity during the University’s Law Career Day. It was a lively discussion and we are grateful for the opportunity to speak to this group of future professionals.


Publication of Arbitrators on the NAI Website

Starting January 2020, we have begun publishing the arbitrator appointments on the NAI website. For more information, please click here.


NAI Services during COVID-19

In the context of COVID-19, the NAI follows the guidelines of the WHO, the National Institute for Public Health and the Environment (in Dutch: RIVM) and the national government. The NAI Bureau remains fully operational and works remotely in order to guarantee the continuity of our services. The health and safety of our staff and users is most important. Within the imposed restrictions with which we show solidarity, we make every effort to ensure the continuation of our services. We hereby inform you that we strongly prefer electronic and telephone communication only, until further notice. Hearings and meetings that would take place at the offices of the NAI have been relocated or will take place via virtual means. If you need to send awards and ADR decisions in hard copy by post, we kindly ask that you inform us timely in advance (prior to dispatch). We thank you in advance for your understanding and trust.



For more information about this newsletter and the NAI, please contact the NAI Bureau at: telephone: +31-10-281 6969 or email: secretariaat@nai-nl.org



In this issue 

Message from the Chair
The NAI is Hiring
Upcoming Events
Recent Events

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