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Richard Aikens

This chapter examines a symbiotic relationship between, on the one hand, the English law of international sales and, on the other, arbitration and control of the arbitral system by the courts. The chapter shows that much of the development of early sales law was integrally interconnected with an arbitration system of dispute resolution. This chapter shows that the availability of the procedure known as the ‘Special Case’ - which enabled courts to review issues of law, but was abolished in 1979 - contributed significantly to the development of the English law of international sales. The current law, enshrined in the UK Arbitration Act (1996), has restricted the scope for appeals on points of law from arbitration awards and this chapter underscores the danger that this may have stultified the development of the English law of international sales.