Article UK Law Gazette: Singapore lures judicial talent for commercial court

Here’s the piece

While in HK we read articles by local journalists complaining about UK  Judges, Barristers & QC’s coming into town Singapore just gets on with it and attracts talent


Singapore’s aim of becoming a prime destination for resolving international commercial disputes has moved a step closer with the appointment of three former senior UK judges to the new Singapore International Commercial Court (SICC).

Sir Vivian Ramsey QC, Sir Bernard Rix QC and Simon Thorley QC are among 11 international judges of the SICC who will hear transnational commercial disputes.

Sir Vivian, who specialises in construction, engineering and technology disputes, served for nine years as a High Court judge, including a period presiding at the Technology and Construction Court.

Sir Bernard, who specialises in international commercial law, sat as a lord justice of appeal in the Court of Appeal for 13 years.

Former deputy High Court judge Thorley has more than 40 years’ experience in IP and related law and was deputy chairman of the Copyright Tribunal for eight years.

The SICC states on its website that the court ‘enhances Singapore’s share of the global legal services pie without compromising Singapore’s success as a seat of international arbitration as well as the international recognition and acclaim enjoyed by the Singapore International Arbitration Centre (SIAC)’.

The SIAC has witnessed rapid growth, with the number of cases increasing by 300% in a decade.

With the addition of a commercial mediation centre last November and now the SICC, litigators have warned that Singapore poses a credible threat to the London Commercial Court’s pre-eminence.