International arbitration as a way to resolve disputes has been growing
rapidly and parties everywhere have been choosing this privately subtle way over
going to the already overburdened courtroom doors.
In a research conducted by Queen Mary university of London and the prestigious
law firm, white and case both London and Singapore were jointly found to be
among the two most preferred arbitration seats. The annual study was conducted
amongst 1218 lawyers and arbitrators from 39 countries, the lawyers had to
choose 5 countries as an arbitration seat where, London and Singapore conjointly
were chosen by 54 percent of the participants.
The study also showed that Indian and Chinese parties constituted the majority
when it came to choosing Singapore as the top seat. The SIAC articulated some
numbers which said that the number of new cases being filed was doubled from
2020; these cases came from over 68 different jurisdictions and carried the net
worth of over $8.5bn, this meant a 100% increase in caseload from 2020, some
suspected if the SIAC was ready for such a humungous increment in it's working.
The most obvious advantage of Singapore over India or even London would be the
promotion of arbitration and Singapore as a seat, that it's government does
The second reason for this increment in caseload would be the Indian and Chinese
parties which would choose Singapore over London because of the proximity
reasons and because Singapore follows the English common law, hence flying to
London would be senseless. Some would argue that brexit has affected London's
arbitration caseload when the facts show otherwise.
India was still nowhere to be found on the list as people still do not trust it
as a seat, the only way India can show up anywhere among these countries is
where the government releases some stringent restrictions and actually promotes
arbitration as freely as the Singaporean govt.
In the very recent judgment of PASL Wind Solutions Private Limited Vs. GE
Power Conversion India Private Limited, the supreme court held that parties
to a contract who are Indian nationals or companies incorporated in India can
choose an arbitration seat outside India. the simple interpretation for this
comes out to be that seats like Hong Kong and Singapore are going to become more
and more popular in the near future.