A landmark United Nations treaty which aims to promote the use of mediation in settling cross-border commercial disputes was signed by 46 countries on August 7, 2019 in Singapore and named after “The Singapore Convention on Mediation”. The Convention in general, provides a universal legal framework for the enforcement of mediation process for commercial agreements. It aims to give more confidence to companies to prefer mediation to resolve disputes in international trade. By the first ink of Singapore, some of the other biggest economies in the world such as the United States of America and China have signed the Convention and overall 46 countries have signed the Convention which includes the Republic of Turkey.
Scope of the Convention
The Convention was suggested and adopted by the UN Commission on International Trade Law in December 2018.The Convention is applicable to the international settlement agreements resulting from mediation. The Convention is an instrument of facilitation of international trade and the promotion of mediation as an alternative and effective method of resolving trade disputes.
It is a binding international instrument to the signatory parties and thus, it expects to set a certain and stabile regulation to international framework on mediation. It also contributes to the Sustainable Development Goal 16 (“SDG 16”) initiated by UN, which aims to provide access to justice and build effective, accountable institutions at all levels.
The Convention provisions include the following stipulations:
- Each Party to the Convention shall enforce a settlement agreement in accordance with its rules of procedure and under the conditions laid down in this Convention.
- Each Party to the Convention may determine the procedural mechanisms that may be followed where the Convention does not prescribe any requirement.
- The disputing party shall provide to the competent authority the settlement agreement signed by them and evidence that the settlement agreement results from mediation. The competent authority may require any necessary document in order to verify that the requirements of the Convention are complied with.
- This Convention shall not deprive any interested party of any right it may have to avail itself of a settlement agreement in the manner and to the extent allowed by the law or the treaties of the Party to the Convention where such settlement agreement is sought to be relied upon.
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