On 27 May 2016, the Singapore International Arbitration Centre (“SIAC“) introduced the sixth edition of its Arbitration Rules (SIAC Rules 2016).

Mr Gary Born, President of the SIAC Court of Arbitration, commented that the new rules “…contain many innovative features aimed at ensuring that SIAC stays at the cutting edge of international arbitration practice around the world.”
The SIAC Rules 2016 come into effect on 1 June 2016.

WHAT ARE THE CHANGES?

  • Multiple Contracts and Consolidation (Rule 6 and Rule 8) – A streamlined process for disputes arising out of or in connection with multiple contracts.
  • Joinder and Intervention (Rule 7) – Both parties and non-parties may apply for joinder or intervention, and the application may be made prior to the appointment of any arbitrator, or after the constitution of the Tribunal.
  • Early dismissal of claim(s) and defence(s) (Rule 28) – A party may file for the early dismissal of a claim(s) or defence(s) within 30 days of the constitution of the Tribunal, and the Tribunal shall issue its order or award within 60 days of the filing of the application.
  • Delocalising the seat of the arbitration (Rule 20) – Singapore will no longer be the default seat of arbitration under the revised rules. Instead, the seat of arbitration will be determined by the Tribunal, unless the parties have agreed otherwise.
  • Remedy against a non-paying party (Rule 26) – The Tribunal is now empowered to issue an order or award for the reimbursement of unpaid deposits towards the costs of the arbitration where a party to the arbitration has paid another party’s share of the deposits on behalf of such party.
  • Enhancing the emergency arbitration proceedings (Rule 29, Schedule 1 & Schedule of Fees) – Shorter times for the appointment of an emergency arbitrator and an order of award of interim relief must now be issued within a maximum of 14 days from the appointment of the emergency arbitrator. The fees of an emergency arbitrator are also now fixed.
  • Arbitrator challenges (Rules 15 & Schedule of Fees) – The Court of Arbitration of SIAC will now issue reasoned decisions on all challenges to arbitrators. The administrative fees payable for arbitrator challenges are fixed at SGD 8,000.

The SIAC Rules 2016 bring together best practices in international arbitration from around the world and will provide users with a streamlined set of procedures that are timely, efficient, cost effective and user-friendly.