The Singapore Court of Appeal's Decision in Astro: Providing Clarity or Causing Uncertainty?

April 01, 2014

This article first appeared in The Asian Dispute Review in April 2014.  

The Singapore Court of Appeal’s recent decision in PT First Media TBK v Astro Nusantara International BV and ors (Astro) is noteworthy for several reasons. Firstly, the Court confirmed that a party against which an award is rendered retains both ‘active’ and ‘passive’ remedies in relation to the award. It may therefore apply to set aside the award within prescribed time limits (the active remedy) or resist an application by the other party to enforce the award (the passive remedy). Secondly, the Court clarified the position in Singapore law on a range of issues, in particular (i) the extent to which an award can be considered to be delocalised, (ii) the means by which a party can be joined to an arbitration, and (iii) the test for whether a party has waived its right to challenge an adverse decision by the arbitral tribunal.

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