Arbitration is a popular and widely used method of commercial dispute resolution in South Africa and worldwide. It is expected that a new International Arbitration Act will be enacted in 2016 and that the modernisation of South African arbitration law will stimulate the development of South Africa as a major regional arbitration centre.

Our team has unmatched depth of experience and expertise within the field of arbitration. The team consists of highly specialised directors, with extensive experience, and younger lawyers who are committed to acquiring skills and experience in this area. Heading our Arbitration practice is the current Chairman of the International Chamber of Commerce South Africa (ICCSA), Des Williams.

Through the team’s international networks, including particularly the International Bar Association (“IBA”) and the International Court of Arbitration of the International Chamber of Commerce (“ICC”), the team has developed an extensive international arbitration network and is highly rated by the leading international publications. On the local front, Werksmans is a founder member of the Arbitration Foundation of Southern Africa (“AFSA”) and continues to have a very close relationship with AFSA. AFSA is the leading South African arbitration organisation and will continue to play an important role in the development of South Africa as a regional arbitration centre.

Werksmans is one of the signatories to the Johannesburg Consensus of the China Africa International Arbitration Centre (“CAIAC”), which will operate as an arbitration centre in South Africa and China.


The team offers the full range of arbitration services, both in South Africa and in international arbitrations outside of South Africa. Senior members of the team are able to act as arbitrator when appointed by an arbitration organisation or by agreement between the parties. We are also able to provide the full range of services in other forms of alternative dispute resolution, including mediation, and senior members of the team are able to assist in the mediation of commercial disputes.

Contact Director Des Williams, Head of Arbitration practice area

View our Arbitration practice area overview