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Arbitrators urge use of ADR to boost trade relations

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The Chartered Institute of Arbitrators (CIArb) has emphasised the need to improve the capacity of dispute resolution in Nigeria, through Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) mechanism.

The Institute stressed that it would enhance intra-Africa trade and increase trade with countries outside the continent. The chairman of the Institute, Olatunde Busari while speaking at the annual conference tagged: “Positioning Africa: The Changing Landscape in Alternative Dispute Resolution,” noted that ADR is a better and attractive dispute resolution mechanism for the development of Nigeria.
 
He added that a number of African countries (54 at present) have signed the African Continental Free Trade Agreement (AFCFTA), an agreement which aims to boost intra-African trade by making Africa a single market economy.

According to him, the United Nation Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA) estimates that the implementation of the agreement could increase intra-African trade by 52 per cent by 2022 and double the share of intra-African trade by the start of the next decade.
 
Busari noted that part of the main objectives under article of the agreement is to establish a mechanism for the settlement of disputes concerning the rights and obligations of state parties.He stressed that it was therefore imperative to improve the capacity of dispute resolved in African Countries as Africa embarks on the road to greater intra-Africa trade as well as increased trade with countries outside the continent. 
 
While calling for support from the judiciary, Busari noted that the courts in Nigeria have made significant efforts to bring about a change in the litigation culture.He added that several states including Lagos, Oyo, Kano, Delta Rivers and Abuja have established multi-door court houses, offering court connected ADR and thereby making available alternative doors for dispute resolution.

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