Governing the Global Governors: The Competence and Constraints of International Administrative Tribunals (24 April 2017)

Asian Institute of International Financial Law
Centre for Chinese Law
Faculty of Law, The University of Hong Kong


Governing the Global Governors: The Competence and Constraints of International Administrative Tribunals

Peter Quayle
Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank

Monday, 24 April 2017
12:30 – 1:30 pm
Room 723, 7/F Cheng Yu Tung Tower
The University of Hong Kong

The importance and influence of international organizations (IOs) is undoubted, and at times seemingly unbounded, in the present era. Whilst often rivalling the functionality of States, IOs increasingly enjoy a greater degree of jurisdictional immunity. One result of this, is that the employees of IOs are not subject to the labour laws of their State members but instead to the employment law of the international civil service. This law governs the recruitment, performance, pay, independence and ethics of the staff of IOs. To ensure the effectiveness of this law, it is upheld by international administrative tribunals (IATs) constituted by, and granted binding powers over, IOs. In this way, IATs can be the greatest, most regular and rigorous experience of accountability of almost all IOs, from the United Nations to the International Monetary Fund to now, the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank. The legal competence, constraints and moral authority of IATs is therefore of essential concern to all who wish to see IOs succeed in their many indispensable mandates. This lecture examined and question the legitimacy of such tribunals.

Peter Quayle is Senior Counsel of the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank, reporting directly to the General Counsel. He specialises in public international law, international administrative law and dispute resolution. He is formerly Associate Director, Senior Counsel of the Office of the General Counsel, European Bank for Reconstruction and Development. Between 2004 and 2012 he was Legal Advisor to the Office of Foreign Litigation, Civil Division European Office, of the US Department of Justice. He was educated at New College, Oxford (BA (Hons) and MA, Modern History) and University College London (LL.M) and is Visiting Professor of International Organizations Law at Peking University Law School. He is a solicitor of England and Wales and trained at Norton Rose Fulbright, qualifying in 2001.