Further to our previous post the Singapore International Arbitration Centre (“SIAC“) announced on 30 December 2016 the official release of the first edition of its Investment Arbitration Rules (“SIAC IA Rules 2017“), a specialised set of rules to address the unique issues present in the conduct of international investment arbitration. The SIAC IA Rules 2017 came into effect on 1 January 2017. A copy of the rules can be found here.

Mr Gary Born, President of the SIAC Court of Arbitration, commented that the rules “contain significant modifications to the SIAC Rules 2016 to reflect the special features and concerns arising in arbitration proceedings involving States, State-controlled entities and intergovernmental organisations. Both States and investors alike can be confident that, in resolving investment disputes under the SIAC IA Rules, they will be provided with a neutral, balanced, transparent and efficient procedural framework that addresses issues that ordinarily arise in international investment arbitration law. The launch of the SIAC IA Rules is yet another offering in keeping with SIAC’s standing as a global international arbitral institution.” WHAT ARE THE KEY HIGHLIGHTS?

Appointment of Arbitrators by the Court and Appointment of an Emergency Arbitrator (Rule 8 and Schedule 1) – A default list procedure for the appointment of the sole or presiding arbitrator and an opt-in mechanism for the appointment of an Emergency Arbitrator.

Challenge of Arbitrators (Rule 11 and Rule 12) – Strict timelines on challenges to arbitrators (28 days) with built-in discretion for the arbitration to proceed during the challenge.

Early Dismissal of Claims and Defences (Rule 26) – A procedure for early dismissal of claims and defences on the basis that a claim or defence is:

  • manifestly without legal merit;
  • manifestly outside the jurisdiction of the Tribunal; or
  • manifestly inadmissible.

Third-Party Submissions and Third-Party Funding (Rule 24, Rule 29 and Rule 33) – Provisions for submissions by non-disputing parties and to enable the Tribunal to order the disclosure of third-party funding arrangements and to take such arrangements into account when apportioning costs.

Draft Award (Rule 30) – Timelines for the closure of proceedings and the submission of the draft Award (not later than 90 days).

Confidentiality and Publication (Rules 37 and 38) – Provisions relating to confidentiality and the discretionary publication of key information relating to the dispute.