A team of law students from the Faculty of Law of Gadjah Mada University (“FH UGM”) made history by achieving several firsts in the 15th Willem C. Vis (East) International Arbitration Moot of 2018 (“Vis East Moot”): it achieved its best-ever result in this competition by winning 4 awards, and in the process became the first ever Indonesian team to reach the Quarter-finals, and was the first Indonesian team to be ranked 1st after the general rounds.
The Vis East Moot is a competition simulating an international arbitration proceeding based on a fictitious trans-border commercial dispute. Participants of the Vis East Moot are expected to do in-depth research on international commercial law, draft memoranda for both claimant and respondent and present oral arguments before a panel of arbitrators. The FH UGM team began their preparation since October 2017 and spent 6 grueling months preparing for the competition, which took place at the City University of Hong Kong on March 11-18, 2018.
First held in 2003, the Vis East Moot runs parallel with the Willem C. Vis Moot in Vienna. Both Vis Moots are known to be the most prestigious and the largest arbitration moot competitions in the world. This year’s Vis East edition attracted 127 teams from leading universities around the world, including Harvard Law School, Yale Law School, National University of Singapore, Monash University etc.
The FH UGM team described the generalrounds as challenging, but they persevered as they faced University of Hong Kong of Hong Kong, China, University of Southern California Gould School of Law of the United States, Dalian Maritime University of China, and Gujarat National Law University of India. FH UGM made the break and advanced to the elimination rounds (top 32 teams advance) and defeated University of Vienna, Austria in the Round of 32 and Duke University School of Law in the Round of 16. The team narrowly lost to Albert-Ludwigs-Universität Freiburg of Germany in the Quarter-finals and bowed out of competition as Quarter-finalist and was declared a the Top-8 team.
In addition to a Quarter-finals finish, the students’ drafting skills was also recognized as the team received an Honorable Mention for Best Memorandum for Claimant. 2 FH UGM team members also grabbed individual honors with Felicia Komala and Nabila Farhani Oegrosen getting Honorable Mentions for Best Oralist. The team was also notified by the organizers through email that it was the highest scoring team in the general rounds.
These achievements would not be possible without the help of Nicholas Ooi and Natalie Ooi of Ooi & Ooi of Malaysia. By chance, the FH UGM team met Natalie in the Vis Pre-Moots hosted by the Asian International Arbitration Centre in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. The team then arranged for training sessions with Nicholas and Natalie via skype.They gave comments and suggestion on how to address the weak points in each party’s case, and also offered insightful tips on managing stress during the competition, all of which contributed to the team’s improved performance in the actual competition. The team members and the moot club of FH UGM would like to take this opportunity to record its sincere thanks and gratitude to Nicholas and Natalie’s assistance in the Vis East Moot.
Community of International Moot Court
Faculty of Law Universitas Gadjah Mada