Arbitration Is Singapore’s Future

Says Singapore’s Law Minister, K Shanmugam. I’m pretty sure the Singapore Law Ministry released a press release on this subject a few months back. ..

Obviously nobody paid attention the first time because it looks like they’ve sent out another release repeating that they aim to be Asia’s premier Arbitration centre…and the world !  All sounds a bit Dr Evil to us…

Zakaria Abdul Wahab of Singapore’s writes..

Singapore Aims To Be Top Arbitration Centre

Singapore is steadfast in turning the city-state into one of the leading arbitration centres in Asia and in the world, the government says.

Law Minister K Shanmugam said the government had been working hard to put in place the necessary requirements to make Singapore "an arbitration venue of choice".

"Singapore is a convenient and neutral locale to hold arbitration hearings,� said the minister at the opening ceremony of the inaugural Singapore Corporate Counsel Association (SCCA) Regional Conference here today.

He said Singapore’s judicial philosophy facilitated arbitration in the city-state, and the judiciary had through case law, made clear that it would support the arbitral process and would not interfere with it.

In line with the aim, he said parties were free to engage lawyers of any nationality and use any governing law, and not just Singapore-qualified lawyers or Singapore law.

Shanmugam said the government had also made it easier for foreign arbitrators and mediators to do their work here, such as, from last year allowing them to provide services related to arbitration without having to apply for a Work Permit or Pass.

He said a colonial era conservation building here had been identified to be renovated and equipped with state-of-the-art facilities for arbitration by the middle of this year to house a first-class venue for international hearings.

The minister also said in building up the arbitration sector, the government was encouraging top arbitral institutions to set up in Singapore, such as the American Arbitration Association (AAA), the Permanent Court of Arbitration (PCA) and the International Chamber of Commerce – International Court of Arbitration (ICC-ICA).

He said the Singapore International Arbitration Centre (SIAC) was also boosting its reputation as a premier international institution by putting on its board highly regarded international arbitrators.

Shanmugam said all these measures had significantly improved the quality and range of arbitration services available in Singapore, and engendered confidence in the integrity and enforceability of arbitration proceedings and created flexibility for arbitration parties to hold hearings here.