Between 8 and 30 April 2014, the Ministry of Law (the "MinLaw") is conducting a public consultation on drafts of the following Bills to develop the framework for the establishment of the Singapore International Commercial Court (the "SICC"):
- Constitution of the Republic of Singapore (Amendment) Bill
- Supreme Court of Judicature (Amendment) Bill
- Evidence (Amendment) Bill
- Legal Profession (Amendment) Bill
This follows an earlier public consultation which the MinLaw had conducted between 3 December 2013 and 31 January 2014 on the Report of the Singapore International Commercial Court Committee (the "SICC Committee") which recommended the establishment of the SICC. The MinLaw had received positive feedback supporting the initiative.
Allen & Gledhill Partners Ang Cheng Hock, SC and Chong Yee Leong are members of the SICC Committee.
Set out below is a summary of the key changes to the respective Bills:
- Constitution of the Republic of Singapore (Amendment) Bill: This Bill provides for the appointment of a new class of judges knownas "International Judges" who will hear SICC matters together with the existing Judges of the Supreme Court.
- Supreme Court of Judicature (Amendment) Bill: Under this Bill, it is proposed that the SICC be established as a division of the High Court with jurisdiction to hear and try actions of an international and commercial nature.
- Evidence (Amendment) Bill: This Bill proposes to allow judges to take judicial notice of foreign law, and dispense with proof of foreign law in certain situations in accordance with the Rules of Court.
- Legal Profession (Amendment) Bill: The Bill seeks to establish a framework for foreign lawyers to represent parties before the SICC.
The following materials are available from the MinLaw website www.mlaw.gov.sg: