Foreign Direct Investment International Arbitration Moot

Winner of the 2020 FDI Moot Global Orals
Sao Paulo University

On 9 November 2020 Sao Paulo University became the first Brazilian team and the first Latin Amiercan team to take home the Skadden Arps Trophy . In a hearing before Wendy Miles, QC (presiding), Charis Tan and Nikita Kondrashov, Sao Paulo prevailed against Paris Bar School. Watch the Final on the FDI Moot YouTube Channel

Third place was taken by Jagiellonian University (Krakow) ahead of Universitas Airlangga (Surabaya) watch the 3rd place match

The Thomas Wälde Award for the Best Advocate of all preliminary rounds went to Bianca Böhme (Saarland University), and the best advocate of the final was adjudged to be Kricia Pires Coelho (Sao Paulo). The Manuela Béltran Award for the best woman advocate from the Global South went ex aequo to Sarah Azahar (Universiti Teknologi MARA) and Hui Jun Hong (University of Malaya, Faculty of Law). Honourable Mention Advocates were Alexandra Alekhina (MGIMO University), Sarah Azahar (Universiti Teknologi MARA, Axel Cross (Universitas Airlangga), Mackenzie Garrity and Ana Verena Sarmento (University of Miami, School of Law), Hui Jun Hong (University of Malaya, Faculty of Law), Jahnvi Jhaveri (King's College London), Fredrik Lindmark (Tsinghua University, School of Law) and Samuel Wittberger (National University of Singapore, Faculty of Law). See the full list of advocates results of the preliminary rounds.

The University of Malaya, Faculty of Law was the overall Highest Ranked Team (combined written and preliminary round scores), and thus at the same time also the recipient of the BakerMcKenzie Prize for the highest ranked team from the Global South. 2nd highest ranked overall team was National Law School of India University, Bangalore and 3rd highest ranked overall team University of Saarland. See Best Teams.

The top memorials from this year’s FDI Moot are for claimant: National and Kapodistrian University of Athens (1st), University of Malaya, Faculty of Law (2nd), and ALSD, Guru Gobind Singh Indraprastha University (3rd); and for respondent: University of Malaya, Faculty of Law (1st(, Universiti Teknologi MARA (2nd), and National Law School of India University (3rd), The memorials will be published in TDM Journal at the end of the year.

For the first time ever, we offered our quarter- and semi-finalists the chance to appoint their own arbitrators from a pool of 30 practitioners. Given the success, we are likely to expand this practice to other rounds in the future. Having the right (directly or indirectly) to choose an arbitrator and choosing the right arbitrator are fundamental to the arbitral process. But it also has its challenges given the limited information known about arbitrators.
In another first, we partnered with Arbitrator Intelligence to collect feedback about arbitrators and AI will be making results public. In the long-run, we believe analytics from AI will help us optimize the FDI Moot’s ‘College of Arbitrators’ while bringing our students closer to real-world considerations.

Including regional rounds, 142 teams with more than 650 team members, 300 arbitrators and 150 memorial and skeleton brief judges took part in the 2020 FDI Moot.

The virtual format allowed greater access to the Globals. Video-conference advocacy skills are fast becoming a necessity, and unsurprisingly the student advocates all acquitted themselves admirably, but even the not-always-so-youthful lawyers on the other side of the virtual table were not far behind. Despite the virtual format, the networking and social dimension was also a success with many Zoom meetings lasting well beyond the conclusion of the hearings.

While we look forward to resuming in-person FDI Moot Globals in 2021 (31 Oct-3 Nov in Seoul), we believe virtual rounds (like the virtual All Africa Regional since 2019) will play an increasing role in the overall FDI Moot framework.

Increasing international investment, the proliferation of international investment treaties, domestic legislation, and international investment contracts have contributed to the development of a new field of international law that defines obligations between host States and foreign investors and refers to internationalised procedures (e.g. ICSID) for resolving related disputes. These disputes involve not only vast sums, but also a panoply of rights, duties, and shifting objectives at the juncture of national and international law and policy. The FDI Moot helps future lawyers attain a practical understanding of these issues. The case and hearings offer a unique forum for academics and practitioners from around the world to discuss developments - and assess emerging talents.

What characterises the FDI Moot? It's about arbitration - so like the Vis? It involves public international law – so like the Jessup? Well, while we agree that the FDI Moot unites some characteristics of these renowned competitions, FDI Moot also introduces other aspects of international dispute resolution and business law, like foreign investment, corporate structures & procedures, licensing, environmental law, IP, damages,... The FDI Moot also has some special features – its Globals are in November and the Global venue rotates among major world dispute resolution centres. Teams compete under aliases to avoid (perceived) biases in favour of (or against) famous universities. And of course our competitors and arbitrators are the BEST :-)

The FDI Moot spans approximately six months each year in two phases, written memorials for claimant and respondent and the hearing of oral argument with regional or national rounds for Asia Pacific (Seoul), South Asia (New Delhi), Kenya (Nairobi), Ethiopia (Dire Dawa) and Viet Nam (Ho Chi Minh City), and pre moots in Budapest, St Petersburg, Sao Paulo and Warsaw....

Asia-Pacific Teams

In 2021, Asia-Pacific teams may participate directly in the Globals (no AP Regional). National limits may apply.

Register NOW! 2020 Case available NOW!