Proposed Singapore international commercial court to be put up for consultation soon

Chief Justice Sundaresh Menon speaking at the joint opening session of the Chief Justices' Conference and the 26th LAWASIA conference on Monday, Oct 28, 2013. Details for the proposed Singapore International Commercial Court will soon be put up for c
Chief Justice Sundaresh Menon speaking at the joint opening session of the Chief Justices' Conference and the 26th LAWASIA conference on Monday, Oct 28, 2013. Details for the proposed Singapore International Commercial Court will soon be put up for consultation. -- PHOTO: THE LAW SOCIETY

Details for the proposed Singapore International Commercial Court will soon be put up for consultation.

Chief Justice Sundaresh Menon, who first floated the idea in January, said the court will serve as an additional avenue for parties to settle international commercial disputes "before a group of some of the most eminent judges".

He added the judge hearing the dispute in the court will be assigned by the Chief Justice which will avoid "any possible issues associated with party appointments".

The move comes in the wake of Singapore's success in playing host to a substantial and increasing volume of international disputes work in recent times.

"Much of this is reflected in the success of the Singapore International Arbitration Centre," said CJ Menon.

He spoke at the joint opening session of the Chief Justices' Conference and the 26th LAWASIA conference on Monday where he delivered a keynote speech entitled "Transnational Commercial Law: Realities, Challenges and a Call for Meaningful Convergence".

CJ Menon, in a wide-ranging address, urged countries in the Asia-Pacific region to find ways to harmonise the commercial laws to reduce cross-border costs and promote investments. He noted that Asean was moving in that direction and for other countries, a "wait-and-see approach was no longer tenable".

Almost 30 Chief Justices from more than 40 jurisdictions have gathered in Singapore - the largest such assembly of Chief Justices here. About 300 delegates have also gathered to attend the LAWASIA conference which kicked off on Monday at the Suntec City Convention Hall.

"It is an immense honour and privilege for the Singapore Judiciary to have this opportunity to host this gathering of Chief Justices and representatives of the various jurisdictions. It is a historic occasion for us to host such an illustrious group of senior judges," said CJ Menon.

Law Minister K. Shanmugam will speak more on the proposed Singapore International Commercial Court in his address to the conference on Tuesday.