Answer ... Under the ACA, five items are recognised as comprising the costs of an arbitration:
- the tribunal’s fees;
- the travel and other expenses incurred by the arbitrators;
- the costs of expert advice and other assistance required by the tribunal;
- the travel and other expenses of witnesses, to the extent that these are approved by the tribunal; and
- the reasonable costs of legal representation and assistance.
The Lagos Arbitration Law recognises these five items and includes a sixth: the fees and expenses of the appointing authority.
In the rules under both laws, in principle, costs are to be borne by the unsuccessful party. However, the tribunal is entitled to apportion each of the above costs between the parties if it determines this to be reasonable. The tribunal or appointing authority is also empowered to request that the parties deposit advances for the recognised costs.
Answer ... There are no restrictions as to what the parties can agree in terms of an arbitration seated in Nigeria, with regard to the apportionment of costs. For example, it is not uncommon for the parties to agree that each side will bear its own costs or that a particular party will pay all or a different proportion of the costs.