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Singapore International Arbitration Centre (SIAC)

Appearance Of Amazon And Future Group Before Singapore International Arbitration Centre:

Amazon and Future Group have agreed to appear before the Singapore International Arbitration Centre (SIAC), the parties informed the Supreme Court (SC) recently.

  • The Supreme court was hearing Amazon’s application seeking directions to restrain Future Retail from alienating its retail assets till the arbitration proceedings between the US-based E-commerce giant and the Kishore Biyani-owned group at Singapore International Arbitration Centre (SIAC) are completed.
  • Amazon and Future group are engaged in litigation at multiple legal portals on the issue of FRL’s merger deal to the tune of Rs 24713 crore with Reliance Retail Limited (RIL).
  • The SIAC in 2020 restrained Future from selling its assets to RIL.
  • The parties in a deal usually sign a contractual agreement which specifies about:
    • The arbitral institution administering the arbitration.
    • The applicable rules.
    • The seat of arbitration.
  • In this case Amazon and Future Group have under their agreement agreed to refer their disputes to SIAC, with Singapore presumably being the contractual choice for the seat/place of arbitration.
  • Once a dispute is referred to arbitration, the process of appointment of the arbitral tribunal takes place.
  • Typically, in case of a three member tribunal, both the parties appoint one member each to the tribunal, while the third member is jointly appointed by the two nominees or, if they fail to agree, by SIAC.
  • Appointment of the arbitral tribunal usually takes time.
  • Therefore, under the rules of SIAC, parties can move SIAC to appoint an emergency arbitrator to get urgent interim relief, even as the process of appointment of the main arbitral tribunal is underway.