Art. 63 is the second of two Articles in the Convention's Chapter VII on “Place of Proceedings”. It allows for exceptions to the Rule of Art. 62 that proceedings are to be held at the seat of the Centre. These exceptions are subject to certain conditions. All proceedings away from the Centre's seat are subject to an agreement of the parties. In addition, there must either be an arrangement under Art. 63(a) or an approval by the Commission or the Tribunal after consultation with the Secretary-General under Art. 63(b).
All the drafts to the Convention provided for the conduct of proceedings away from the Centre in terms similar to what eventually became Art. 63 (History, Vol. I, pp. 278–282) (see also para. 4 infra). The debates centred mainly on the types of institutions and the kinds of arrangements that might be suitable for this purpose (see paras. 14, 19 infra) and on whether proceedings might be held in the territory of an interested party (see para. 24 infra).
“Conciliation and arbitration proceedings may be held, if the parties so agree, …”
The conduct of formal proceedings away from the seat of the Centre is contingent upon an agreement of the parties. Art. 63 is one of a number of provisions of the Convention that give the parties discretion in ICSID proceedings. Other examples are Arts. 26, 29, 30, 33, 35, 37, 38, 39, 43, 44, 46, 47, 60 and 61.