On 1 November 2017, SIArb hosted its 36th anniversary dinner at Aura, Sky Lounge, National Gallery Singapore. This is the second time that the annual anniversary dinner was held at Aura within the iconic former City Hall building after excellent reviews from last year’s attendees.
The dinner was preceded by a cocktail where members and guests celebrated the fellowship of the arbitration community in Singapore before taking their seats for the opening address of the newly elected SIArb President, Mr. Dinesh Dhillon, who took the opportunity to give a snapshot of the achievements and projects for the past year including the guidelines on third-party funding for arbitration and a forecast of the exciting things to come.
The Guest of Honour for this year was the former Judge of Appeal of the Supreme Court of Singapore and Attorney-General of Singapore, Mr. VK Rajah S.C. In his address, Mr. Rajah thanked the SIArb for the invitation and shared about the increasing focus on ethical standard of international arbitration practitioners as Singapore develops into an established international arbitration centre. Mr. Rajah opined that it is in Singapore’s interest to set the highest pragmatic standards for its professionals as in his view, jurisdictions that best address the desire of users of the arbitral process for enforceable ethical standards will enjoy first mover advantage and benefit from common expectations, consistency and greater confidence from users.
Mr. Rajah further shared his views on how having a high ethical standard will not impede arbitration by creating an uneven playing field. Instead, it will help enhance the reputation of practitioners in Singapore before their clients, opposing counsel and Tribunals. Mr. Rajah also commended the effort of SIArb to progress matters by promoting best practices including the release of its Guidelines on Third Party Funding.
Members and their guests were entertained by 'The Leandra Lane Trio' and the group’s fantastic lead singer, Leandra Veronica Rasiah Lane, through the evening and had a great time bonding with old friends and making new ones.
A big thank you to all who attended the dinner and made it a memorable evening.
*The complete paper on “The Case for Singapore To Take the Lead In International Arbitration Ethics” by Mr VK Rajah S.C which formed the basis of his speech as our Guest of Honour has been sent to all attendees of the 36th annual anniversary dinner.
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Chua Jian Zhi – Eversheds Harry Elias LLP