Contributor Spotlight: CECAP

Liliana Sánchez, Centro de Conciliación y Arbitraje de Panamá (CECAP)

Tell me a little about your background (including, but not limited to: How did you get involved in dispute resolution? Why dispute resolution, and what do you consider the importance of dispute resolution?)

I got involved in dispute resolution through MIF / IDB justice improvement projects from 1998 to 2000 and then joined the staff of the Conciliation and Arbitration Center of Panama in 2000, where I am currently employed.

I saw in the resolution of disputes not only a professional opportunity as a lawyer, because it allows you to be part of the solution of the problem of justice in your country; but also the opportunity for many companies to have alternatives in line with the current business world.  Precisely in this is the importance of dispute resolution, since technology and the way in which business moves today require solutions based on specialization, experience and speed - which then translate into efficiency in the management of the solution of disputes.

Tell me about your institution. What types of cases do you manage, what are your institutional priorities, what do you specialize in, etc.? 

The Panama Conciliation and Arbitration Center was founded in 1994. With more than 22 years of experience, it handles more than 100 arbitration and conciliation cases annually. The local market and our country’s type of service economy have marked its multisectoral specialization based primarily on the construction industry and real estate business, as well as energy and services.

Its priority in the last five years is to expand its services in the Central American Region and the Caribbean.

Did you find DRD easy to use?        

The familiarization has been quite fast, because the system is very friendly. It allows us not only to order our data, but also to have it available for the promotion of the Center itself.

What is the advantage of being a contributor of DRD data? 

From our perspective it has several advantages: 

First, it is a privilege to participate in DRD, as it is an acknowledgment to the institution of arbitration and the institutional framework.

Second, when data is contributed by our institution, DRD remunerates the Center based on whatever percentage our data made up of all data contributed that particular quarter.

Third, it provides statistical information regarding the activity of the international arbitration in the Center.

How will your institution use aggregated DRD data?

To promote the Center as a place of international arbitrations and case management.

If another institution was thinking about becoming a data contributor, is there anything you want to share with them?

DRD is a tool that helps promote arbitration centers, as well as being a tool for our Center’s self-management resources. The initiation process is easy and the system is very friendly. We recommend the inclusion of more institutions in the region.

Can you think of any specific example in the past when your institution might have benefited from the data that DRD now offers?

Before using DRD we did not have orderly data on the development of international arbitration at the Center, since we did not have the resources to organize information as DRD organizes and presents it. Neither could we see the macro development at the level of the different geographical areas. DRD provides insight into the experiences of other larger centers which allows us to orient our efforts and replicate experiences to attain the goals that the great institutions of arbitration have achieved.

Is there anything else you would like to share with me about this experience?

I presented to the Board of Directors of the Center the results of the various reports that DRD has available and they encouraged me to be a contributor because of the importance not only as an economic contribution, but also because of the increased international profile that our arbitration institution receives through our involvement.