REGIONAL CENTRE FOR INTERNATIONAL COMMERCIAL ARBITRATION ACT

ARRANGEMENT OF SECTIONS

PART I

Establishment, etc., of the Regional Centre for International Commercial Arbitration

SECTION

1. Establ ishment of the Regional Centre.
2. Management of the Centre.

PART II

Objectives and functions of the Centre

  1. Objectives of the Centre.
  2. Functions and powers of the Centre.

PART III

Staff of the Centre

  1. Director of the Centre.
  2. Other staff of the Centre.

PART IV

Financial provisions

  1. Fund of the Centre.
  2. Expenditure of the Centre.
  3. Power to accept gifts.
  4. Annual estimates, account and audit.
    I I. Annual report.
  5. Power to borrow.
  6. Exemption from tax.
  7. Exemption from customs duties, etc.

PART V

Miscellaneous provisions

  1. Entry into Nigeria of employees, etc., of the Centre.
  2. Premises and offices.
  3. Seal of the Centre.
  4. Rules.
  5. Interpretation.
  6. Short title.

An Act to establish the Regional Centre for International Commercial Arbitration
within the Asian-African region.

[1999 No. 39.J

[10th May, 1999]

[Commencement. ]

WHEREAS the Asian-African Legal Consultative Committee had decided on 23rd of
January 1978, during its Nineteenth Session held in Doha, (Qatar), to establish a Regional
Centre for International Commercial Arbitration in Nigeria in co-operation with, and with
the assistance of, the Federal Government of Nigeria;

AND WHEREAS the Federal Government had in 1988 approved the establishment of the
Regional Centre for International Commercial Arbitration in Nigeria under the auspices
of the Asian-African Legal Consultative Committee;

AND WHEREAS it is desirable to make statutory provisions in Nigeria to give the Re-
gional Centre for International Commercial Arbitration legal status and recognition:

PART I

Establishment, etc., of the Regional Centre for International
Commercial Arbitration

1. Establishment of the Centre

(1) There is hereby established a body to be known as the Regional Centre for Inter-
national Commercial Arbitration (in this Act referred to as “the Centre”).

(2) The Centre–

(a)       shall be a body corporate with perpetual succession and a common seal;

(b)       may sue and be sued in its corporate name; and

(c)        shall have its principal office in Lagos.

2. Management of the Centre

The Centre shall be under the management of the Asian-African Legal Consultative
Committee (in this Act referred to as the “Consultative Committee”) on such terms and
conditions as may be agreed on between the Consultative Committee and the Federal
Government in the headquarters agreement.

PART II

Objectives and functions of the Centre

  1. Objectives of the Centre

The objectives of the Centre are to—

(a)       provide a unified legal framework for the fair and efficient settlement, through
arbitration and conciliation, of commercial disputes within the region;

(b)       promote the growth and effective functioning of national arbitration institutions
within the region; and

(c)         promote the wider use and application of the United Nations Commission on
International Trade Law Arbitration and Conciliation Rules (in this Act re-
ferred to as “the Rules”) within the region.

  1. Functions and powers of the Centre

The functions and powers of the Centre are to—

(a)       promote international arbitration and conciliation in the region;

        (b)      provide arbitration under fair, inexpensive and expeditious procedure In the
region;
(c)       act as a co-ordinating agency in the Consultative Committee dispute resolution system;

(d)      co-ordinate the activities of and assist existing institutions concerned with ar-
bitration, particularly among those in the region;

(e)       render assistance in the conduct of ad-hoc arbitration proceedings, particularly
those held under the Rules;

(f)         assist in the enforcement of arbitral awards;

        (g)        maintain registers ot:-
(i)   expert witnesses; and
(ii)     suitably qualified persons to act as arbitrators as and when required; and

         (h)       carry out such other activities and do other such things as are conducive or incidental to its other functions under this Act.
PART III

Staff of the Centre

  1. Director of the Centre

(1) There shall be for the Centre a Director who shall-

(a)       be a Nigerian citizen; and

            (b)      be appointed by the President on the recommendation of the appropriate authority in consultation with the Secretary-General of the Consultative Committee.

(2) The Director shall hold office for such period and on such terms and conditions as

may be specified in his letter of appointment.

(3) The Director shall be the chief executive of the Centre and be responsible for the
day-to-day administration of the Centre.

6. Other staff of the Centre

The Centre may, with the approval of the Consultative Committee, from time to time,
appoint such persons, whether from within or outside Nigeria, as he may deem necessary,
to assist the Centre in the performance of its functions under this Act.

PART IV

Financial provisions

7. Fund of the Centre

There shall be established and maintained for the Centre a fund into which shall be
paid and credited—

(a)       all subventions and budgetary allocation from the Federal Government;

      (b)       such sums as shall, from time to time, be provided by the Consultative Committee;

(c)        all sums accruing to the Centre by way of gifts, endowments, bequests, grants or other contributions by persons and organisations;

(d)       foreign aid and assistance from bilateral agencies; and

(e)        all other sums which may, from time to time, accrue to the Centre.

8. Expenditure of the Centre

The Centre shall, from time to time, apply the funds at its disposal to–

(a)       establish and maintain the principal and other offices of the Centre;

(b)       publicise and promote the activities of the Centre;

(c)        pay the salaries, allowances and benefits of employees of the Centre;

(d)       pay other overhead allowances, benefits and other administrative costs of the Centre; and

(e)        undertake such other activities as are connected with all or any of the functions of the Centre under this Act.

  1. Power to accept gifts

( 1) The Centre may accept gifts of land, money or other property on such terms and
conditions, if any, as may be specified by the person or organisation making the gift.

(2) The Centre shall not accept any gift if the conditions attached by the person or or-
ganisation making the gift are inconsistent with the functions of the Centre under this Act.

10. Annual estimates, account and audit

(1) The Centre shall prepare and submit to the appropriate authority of the Federal
Government, not later than 30 September in each year, an estimate of the expenditure and
income of the Centre during the next succeeding year.

(2) The Centre shall keep proper accounts of the Centre and proper records in relation
to those accounts.

(3) The accounts of the Centre shall be audited by external auditors appointed by the
Centre from the list and in accordance with guidelines supplied by the relevant depart-
ment of the Federal Government.

11. Annual report

The Centre shall submit to the Secretary-General and to the appropriate authority an
annual report on the activities and administration of the Centre during the immediately
preceding year and shall include in the report the audited accounts of the Centre and the
auditor’s report on those accounts.

12. Power to borrow

(1) The Centre may, from time to time, borrow by overdraft or otherwise such sums
as it may require for the performance of its functions under this Act.

(2) The Centre shall obtain the consent of  the Secretary-General before borrowing
any money required under subsection (1) of this section.

13. Exemption from tax

(1) The Centre shall not pay income tax on any income derived by the Centre under
this Act or accruing to it from any of its investments.

(2) Accordingly, the provisions of any enactment relating to the taxation of compa-
nies or trust funds shall not apply to the Centre.

14. Exemption from customs duties, etc.

The Centre shall not pay customs duty on or be restricted or prohibited from import-
ing any equipment, material, supply and any other thing required by the Centre for the
purposes of this Act.

PART V

Miscellaneous provisions

15. Entry into Nigeria of employees, etc., of the Centre

If a person, other than a Nigerian citizen, on seeking to enter Nigeria, satisfies an im-
migration officer in Nigeria that he–

(a)        is to be employed by the Centre; or

      (b)        is engaged by the Centre in a professional capacity as an adviser,

he shall be deemed to have accepted employment with the Federal Government for the
purposes of section 8 of the Immigration Act and shall not be required to produce a con-
sent to enter Nigeria.

[Cap. 11.]

16. Premises and offices

(1) For the purpose of providing offices and premises necessary for the performance

of its functions, the Centre may, subject to the Land Use Act-

(a)       purchase or take on lease any interest in land, building or property; and

(b)       build, equip and maintain offices and premises.

(2) The Centre may, subject to the Land Use Act, sell or lease out any office or
premises held by it, which is no longer required for the performance of its functions under
this Act.

[Cap. L5.]

17. Seal of the Centre

(1) The fixing of the seal of the Centre shall be authenticated by the signature of the
Director and such other person as the Centre may specify.

(2) Any contract or instrument which, if made or executed by a person not being a
body corporate, would not be required to be under seal, may be made or executed on be-
half of the Centre by the Director.

(3) A document purporting to be a document duly executed under the seal of the
Centre shall be received in evidence and shall, unless and until the contrary is proved, be
presumed to be so executed.

18. Rules

( 1) The Director may, with the approval of the Secretary-General, make rules for the
administration of arbitrations conducted under the auspices of the Centre.

(2) The rules made under subsection (1) of this section shall be made available to
members of the public.

19. Interpretation

In this Act, unless the context otherwise requires–

“appropriate authority” means the Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister
of Justice;

“Centre” means the Regional Centre for International Commercial Arbitration estab-
lished under section 1 of this Act;

Consultative Committee” means the Asian-African Legal Consultative Committee;

“headquarters agreement” means the headquarters agreement between the Federal

Government and the Consultative Committee;

“region” means the Asian-African region;

“relevant department” means the office of the Auditor-General for the Federation;

“Secretary-General” means the Secretary-General of the Consultative Committee.

20. Short title

This Act may be cited as the Regional Centre for International Commercial Arbitra-
tion Act.

          

SUBSIDIARY LEGISLATION

                     No Subsidiary Legislation

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