The European Arbitration Review 2021

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Published in Law Business Research

This chapter addresses the concept of public policy in relation to its use as a ground for annulling arbitral awards in Spain.

Over the past few years, the Spanish arbitration community has been involved in an ongoing debate concerning the annulment of arbitral awards on grounds of public policy. In a recent judgment, the Spanish Constitutional Court provided clarity on this issue by way of its reversal of a Spanish court decision that had annulled an award for being contrary to public policy. The Constitutional Court decision should serve to further strengthen Spain’s appeal as a safe and secure seat in which to conduct international arbitrations. This chapter shall analyse the public policy annulment ground and explain how this came to be an issue of interest in Spain, and further address the Constitutional Court’s intervention and its recent pronouncement on this matter, as well as what this means for conducting arbitration in the future in Spain.

In fact, this judgment’s publication coincides with the foundation of the Madrid International Arbitration Center (‘MIAC’ or ‘the Center’), an innovative arbitral institution designed for international dispute resolution.

An extract from the 2021 edition of GAR’s The European Arbitration Review, first published in December 2020. The whole publication is available at