IBA Annual Conference 2019
The 2019 International Bar Association (IBA) Annual Conference - the legal world's largest international event - took place from 22 – 27 September at the COEX Convention & Exhibition Center, in Seoul, South Korea.
The event has attracted around 5,000 delegates from 120 countries representing law firms, corporations, governments and regulators.
At the Opening Ceremony, the President of the Republic of Korea, Mr Moon Jae-in, officially opened the Conference (via a video message). The Chair of the IBA Seoul Annual Conference Host Committee and Former President of the International Criminal Court, The Honourable Song Sang-Hyun, gave a welcome address on behalf of the Korean Legal community followed by the Mayor of Seoul, Mr Park Won Soon, who also gave a welcome speech to delegates. Furthermore, the Former Secretary-General of the United Nations Mr Ban Ki-moon has delivered (via video) a thoughtful message to the world’s legal profession.
IBA President, Mr Bernardes Neto, gave a wide-ranging address on many of the salient issues facing the world today where he has emphasized on the importance of the rule of law (released last year by the IBA). This cause was also supported by Mr Ban Ki-moon, who asked the audience to “Imagine a world without the rule of law: no independent media, no freedom to assembly and peaceful protest, no freedom to think individual ideas or articulate opinions, no independent judiciary or legal profession”.
The main topics discussed during the 200 working sessions held during the week, included modern populism; human rights; bullying and sexual harassment in the legal profession; technological advancements and their impact on the legal profession; the importance of protecting and promoting the rule of law and international arbitration.
Indeed, the Arbitration Committee included more than 10 working sessions dedicated to international arbitration, such as: New approaches and solutions to dealing with corruption in investment arbitration, Innovating arbitration through technology, M&A in international arbitration, How evidence is best-presented in international arbitration and the IBA rules on evidence, Hot topics in international arbitration. The Arbitration Committee breakfast meeting, held on Wednesday 25 September 2019, was an opportunity to discuss matters of interest and future activities. On that same day, the Arbitration Committee dinner took place at the Villa de Bailey and gathered almost all arbitration practitioners who attended the IBA Conference in Seoul.
Many members of the MARC Court, the MARC Advisory Board and the MARC Secretariat participated as speakers and as delegates during this edition, such as Mr David Rivkin (Past President of the IBA, Member of the MARC Court), Dr Jalal El Ahdab (Senior Vice Chair - Arab Regional Forum of the IBA, Vice-Chair of the MARC Advisory Board and who spoke during the panel entitled: Singapore convention: a game changer?), Ms Cheng-Yee Khong (Member of the MARC Court), Mr Nish Shetty (Member of the MARC Advisory Board) and Ms Dipna Gunnoo (Head of MARC).
Please click here should you wish to see this annual conference in review and to have access to the photo gallery.