Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy


School of Law


Arbitration is a system for settling disputes and a substitute for litigation in court. This system has been used throughout the ages. It has, however, evolved over time in to the current system of arbitration, which has been shaped by changes in the world. Because of the growth of international commercial interaction, the number of disputes has increased. A faster way than litigation to resolve disputes is through the use of arbitration. Different nations, however, have different customs, language, culture and religion, and these may result in some conflicts and disagreements in applying foreign arbitral awards. This is exactly the case with Saudi Arabia. The country has been mistaken in discouraging arbitration of foreign awards, without much understanding of their culture, and the laws that regulate foreign arbitration. There is no country that would willingly discourage arbitration if it is an important source of economic development. This research is a comparative study between Saudi Arabia and Australia, to show that Saudi Arabia, indeed implements foreign arbitral awards, and that it is the difference in culture, laws, and practice that lead to different negative perceptions about the country’s arbitration system. This has been achieved through the examination of the legal provisions regulating foreign arbitration in Australia, and of the Grievances Board in Saudi Arabia in dealing with a foreign arbitral award. The examination focused on comparing experiences, case studies in approving foreign arbitral awards, and literature about implementation of foreign arbitral awards in Australia and Saudi Arabia. The comparison is based on efficiency, justice to the parties in the individual case, and societal values.

One of the most important finding is that there is a higher level of efficiency in regard to Australia, and equal maintenance by both jurisdictions of societal values and justice to the parties concerned, although some judgments appeared to discourage arbitration in both countries. These findings and analysis show that it is important to understand different countries’ legal systems, cultures, customs, language and religion, in order to improve understanding of foreign legal regulations related to arbitration. This will also help increase efficiency in implementing foreign arbitral awards in the respective countries.