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Introduction

Mediation enables disputes between trading partners to be settled effectively while maintaining a business relationship. Geneva is a globally recognised centre in the field of the prevention and resolution of international disputes. In addition to arbitration, the CCIG has set up a commercial mediation service to enable businesses to settle their disputes efficiently.

Definition

Commercial mediation is a form of amicable dispute resolution in which the parties ask a mediator, who is a neutral, independent third party, to help them to reach an agreement thus settling their dispute. Unlike an arbitrator or judge, the mediator does not give a decision or judgement. Mediation is based on the free will of the parties, meaning that any party can end the mediation at any time and without providing reasons.

Advantages

Confidentiality

By using the Swiss Rules of Commercial Mediation, the parties agree to keep all information exchanged strictly confidential. The companies’ image is therefore preserved.

Control of the process

The parties are free to conduct commercial mediation as they wish. For example, they may appoint a mediator of their choice. In addition, parties may terminate the process at any time and are not required to provide a reason for such termination.

Checks on competence of mediators

The CCIG shall ensure that the mediator assists the parties in a professional, neutral, impartial and independent manner. The mediator must agree to comply with the European Code of Conduct for Mediators.

A very swift procedure

Commercial mediation is a very swift procedure. Statistics show that mediation requires, on average, four half-day sessions. Its success rate varies from 75% to 80% and the parties’ satisfaction rate is above 90%.

Cost effective

Commercial mediation avoids legal action which is often lengthy and onerous. Mediation costs include the cost of registration (CHF 300.- per party) and the mediator’s fees.

Maintaining the business relationship

The principal aim of commercial mediation is to permit the parties to exchange their points of view and to explore solutions that are acceptable to them, taking into account their current and future interests. The agreement, the terms of which have been defined by the parties themselves, can therefore be executed more easily. Through mediation, the business relationship is maintained or revived.