Volume 33 (2016) / Issue 4
The development of outer space law at an international level has arguably stagnated after the Moon Agreement in 1979. With the rise in private space activities from the end of the twentieth century, a robust framework for dispute resolution has become an increasingly vital necessity in the space law regime. Scholars have theorized several schemes for settlement of disputes such as consultative alternative dispute resolution, a tribunal for the settlement of space law disputes, a multi-door courthouse and so on, but very few concepts have transformed into operable mechanisms. In space law at the international level, diplomatic consultation, claims commission under the Liability Convention, the International Court of Justice and, in support of arbitration, the rules of the Permanent Court of Arbitration for the Settlement of Disputes relating to Outer Space 2012 remain the only existing viable mechanisms. The article evaluates all these forums for dispute settlement to demonstrate their inadequacies. Thereafter, having identified its long-term limitations, the article seeks to justify a multi-tiered arbitration clause as an effective means of settlement of disputes relating to outer space.
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