Chapter IV: Conduct of the Fact-Finding Proceeding

Rule 12: Sessions and Work of the Committee

(1) Each party shall file a preliminary written statement of not more than 50 pages with the Secretary-General within 15 days after the date of constitution of the Committee, unless the parties agree otherwise, and in any event before the first session. The preliminary statement shall address the party’s view on the mandate of the Committee, the scope of the inquiry, relevant documents, persons to be interviewed, site visits and any other relevant matters. The Secretary-General shall transmit the preliminary written statements to the Committee and the other party.

(2) The Committee shall hold a first session with the parties within 30 days after its constitution or such other period as the parties may agree.

(3) At the first session, the Committee shall determine the protocol for the fact-finding (“Protocol”) after consulting with the parties on procedural matters, including:

(a) the Committee’s mandate;

(b) the procedure for the conduct of the proceeding, such as the procedural languages; method of communication; place of sessions; whether a session will be held in person or remotely; the next steps in the proceeding; the treatment of information and documents; persons to be interviewed; site visits; and any other procedural and administrative matters;

(c) whether the Report to be issued will be binding on the parties; and

(d) whether the Committee should make any recommendations in its Report.

(4) The Committee shall conduct the proceeding in accordance with the Protocol and take all steps necessary to discharge its mandate. To that end, it shall make all decisions required for the conduct of the proceeding.

(5) Any matters not provided for in these Rules or not previously agreed to by the parties shall be determined by agreement of the parties or, failing such agreement, by the Committee.

Rule 13: General Duties

(1) The Committee shall treat the parties equally and provide each party with a reasonable opportunity to participate in the proceeding. It shall conduct the proceeding in an expeditious and cost-effective manner and shall consult regularly with the parties on the conduct of the proceeding.

(2) The parties shall cooperate with the Committee and with one another and shall conduct the proceeding in good faith and in an expeditious and cost-effective manner. The parties shall endeavor to provide all relevant explanations, documents or other information requested by the Committee and participate in the sessions of the Committee. The parties shall use best efforts to facilitate the Committee’s inquiry.

Rule 14: Calculation of Time Limits

Time limits referred to in these Rules shall be calculated from the day after the date on which the procedural step starting the period is taken, based on the time at the seat of the Centre. A time limit shall be satisfied if a procedural step is taken on the relevant date, or on the subsequent business day if the date falls on a Saturday or Sunday.

Rule 15: Costs of the Proceeding

Unless the parties agree otherwise:

(a) the fees and expenses of the Committee and the administrative charges and direct costs of the Centre shall be borne equally by the parties; and

(b) each party shall bear any other costs it incurs in connection with the proceeding.

Rule 16: Confidentiality of the Proceeding

(1) All information relating to the fact-finding proceeding, and all documents generated in or obtained during the proceeding, shall be confidential, unless: 

(a) the parties agree otherwise;

(b) the information or document is independently available; or

(c) disclosure is required by law.

(2) Unless the parties agree otherwise, the fact that they are seeking or have sought fact-finding shall be confidential.

Rule 17: Use of Information in Other Proceedings

A party shall not rely in other proceedings on any positions taken, admissions made, or views expressed by the other party or the members of the Committee during the fact-finding proceeding, unless the parties agree otherwise.