ARBITRATION PURSUANT TO AN ARBITRATION AGREEMENT : The arbitral tribunal
The arbitral tribunal
15 . –
(1) The parties are free to agree on the number of arbitrators to form the tribunal and whether there is to be a chairman or umpire.
(2) Unless otherwise agreed by the parties, an agreement that the number of arbitrators shall be two or any other even number shall be understood as requiring the appointment of an additional arbitrator as chairman of the tribunal.
(3) If there is no agreement as to the number of arbitrators, the tribunal shall consist of a sole arbitrator.
Section 15 is one of the many provisions reflective of party autonomy, allowing the parties the right to agree on the number of arbitrators to form the tribunal. Section 15(1) reflects, but does not exactly reproduce, Art 10(1) of the Model Law. 1 For all practical purposes (i.e. 99% of all known commercial arbitrations), the choice is between one or three. In investment treaty arbitrations, the invariable trend is for three arbitrators, and for some larger international boundary or territorial disputes, five arbitrators is common.
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