International Commercial Arbitrations Between Singapore And India

The present article focuses on International Commercial Arbitrations between Indian and overseas parties, where the seat of arbitration is in Singapore. It further discusses the issues faced by foreign companies trying to seek alternative methods of dispute resolution, obtain reliefs and remedies in India and Singapore as well as with the enforcement mechanism for Singapore seated arbitrations in both countries.

With the growth of international trade and commerce, more and more disputes arise from cross-border transactions involving ‘foreign’ parties, and parties have turned towards alternative methods of dispute resolution beyond the traditional forum of court. Given that the bedrock of arbitration is consent by parties, parties are free to agree to the procedures concerning arbitrations including the seat of arbitration.  Parties normally agree to arbitration by means of an arbitration clause in a contract made by them before a dispute has arisen, although it can also be agreed to after a dispute has arisen. Arbitrations can be both institutional as well as ad-hoc arbitrations. Various institutions such as London Court of International Arbitration (LCIA), the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC), Singapore International Arbitration Centre (SIAC), etc. also administer arbitrations, and carry their own rules of procedure for arbitration.

The SIAC was established in July 1991. The SIAC administers most of its cases under its own rules of arbitration although it is able to administer arbitrations under any other rules agreed to by the parties. The SIAC has initiated provisions for the purpose of:

  1. International and domestic commercial arbitration and conciliation;
  2. Promotion of  arbitration and conciliation as alternatives to litigation for the settlement commercial disputes; and
  3. Development of  a pool of arbitrators and experts in the law and practice of international arbitration and conciliation

The SIAC has assisted in rendering administrative services which include settling fees of arbitrators, providing venue for hearings, organizing dates for meetings between the tribunal and parties’ representatives and acting as a registry of pleadings, documents and correspondence.

This article deals with the basic law governing arbitrations in Singapore as well as India in respect of Singapore seated arbitrations, with a special focus on SIAC Rules.

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