29 June 2021
On 20 May 2021, the Singapore International Arbitration Centre (“SIAC”) announced that the Ministry of Justice of the Russian Federation has granted approval for SIAC to be registered as a permanent arbitral institution (“PAI”) under Russia’s Federal Law on Arbitration.
SIAC’s PAI status is expected to further enhance the benefits to parties who choose to resolve Russia-related international disputes at SIAC.
As a PAI, SIAC is now authorised to administer international commercial arbitrations where the seat of arbitration is Russia. In particular, SIAC is authorised to administer certain types of “corporate disputes” as defined in Russian law, i.e. disputes arising out of the ownership of shares in Russian legal entities or the management thereof. This is relevant in respect of post-M&A disputes relating to Russian companies because many such disputes (including disputes arising from shareholders’ agreements, joint venture agreements, share sales, pledge and option agreements) qualify as “corporate disputes” and can only be referred to licensed institutions.
In its press release announcing this development, SIAC expressed its continued commitment in engaging and working closely with users and stakeholders in the Russian arbitration community in order to jointly promote and develop international arbitration in Russia. The SIAC Secretariat comprises counsel who are fluent in several languages including Russian, and is able to administer cases in languages other than English, including Russian. The SIAC Arbitration Rules 2016 are also available in Russian as well as in other languages.