More Law Firms May Expand Into Singapore

More Law Firms May Expand Into Singapore

SINGAPORE – More law firms may expand or set up shop in the city-state as more companies from the world’s leading economies decide to arbitrate their cases here.

According to a report from The Straits Times on Monday morning (15 November, SGT), industry players underscored that the city-state has clearly cemented its status as a top dispute resolution centre in Asia.

The fact that major economies are recovering from the COVID-19 pandemic should also provide impetus to propel the country as a leading arbitration player in the world.

“As can be seen from the statistics provided by the Singapore International Arbitration Centre (SIAC) earlier this year, the three biggest foreign users of SIAC are India, the United States and China. All three of these economies are projected to have robust growth in 2021 and beyond, and the level of activities for dispute resolution can only go up,” said Chong Yee Leong, Co-head of international arbitration at Allen & Gledhill.

“As a dispute resolution centre, both international arbitration and court litigation (and in particular the Singapore International Commercial Court) should see growth in terms of size and value of cases,” he noted.

Oon & Bazul’s Managing Partner Bazul Ashhab agrees with Chong. He said Singapore’s huge growth in the arbitration sector has resulted in the country being named as the leading arbitration destination in the world – a title the country shares with London, based on the latest White & Case-Queen Mary survey that was published earlier this year.

Aside from that, SIAC was recognised as the most preferred arbitration institution in the Asia Pacific region, and second in the world.

As a matter of fact, during the tenure of SIAC’s most recent former CEO, Lim Seok Hui, the institution’s caseload has risen substantially from just 235 cases in 2012 to 1,080 cases in 2020, with parties from over 100 countries arbitrating disputes in SIAC, said the institution in a public statement.

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