Vietnam International Arbitration Center (VIAC) and Vietnam Mediation Centre (VMC) welcomed representatives of Singapore International Mediation Centre (SIMC)

Jan 19, 2024

In the afternoon of 16 January 2024, Vietnam International Arbitration Centre (VIAC) and Vietnam Mediation Centre (VMC), a division of VIAC, welcomed representatives of Singapore International Mediation Centre (SIMC) at the headquarters in Hanoi.

On behalf of VIAC and VMC, there were Mr. Vu Anh Duong - Permanent Vice President cum Secretary General of VIAC, and Mr. Phan Trong Dat - Acting Director of VMC, a division of VIAC. The meeting also had the presence of representatives from SIMC, Mr. George Lim SC - Chairman of SIMC, and Mr. Chuan Wee Meng - Director of SIMC. Both parties have exchanged practical information as well as the experience of SIMC in promoting commercial mediation at SIMC in particular and in Singapore in general.

In the meeting, Mr. Vu Anh Duong shared some statistics on the use of alternative dispute resolution (ADRs) methods in Vietnam. Mr. Duong stated that since the issuance of the Law on Commercial Arbitration 2010 and the Decree No 22/2017/ND-CP on Commercial Mediation, the number of cases resolved by arbitration and mediation has increased in recent years. The number of disputes at VIAC has been increasing every year in terms of both quantity and value of disputes. Notably, in 2023, VIAC received 425 cases, an increase of more than 45% from 2022. However, the proportion of the parties in commercial disputes who choose the Court to resolve  their disputes still accounts for the majority. Mr. Duong also reaffirmed the mission and core objectives of VIAC. Beyond being merely an arbitration institution, VIAC also constantly strives to promote commercial arbitration and ADRs in Vietnam and further develop the community of ADR practitioners, enhancing the awareness of the business community about the benefits of ADRs to share the burden of the court system.

Representatives from SIMC shared about the practice of commercial mediation at SIMC in particular and Singapore in general, as well as the role of the Government in promoting the use of ADRs. In Singapore, mediation is the primary method of resolving disputes, and parties involved in court proceedings are encouraged to mediate before bringing the dispute to court. In addition to mediation in court, the SIMC representative also emphasized the independence of private mediation organizations such as SIMC, which were established to meet the needs of businesses. In addition, he also pointed out two key factors in promoting the development of mediation, including (1) Continue to develop and organise mediation training programs to further enhance the dispute resolution capacity of mediators, lawyers, and legal practitioners through commercial mediation, and (2) Ensuring the enforceability of mediated settlement agreements through the accession to the Singapore Convention on Mediation 2018.

Mr. Phan Trong Dat, Acting Director of VMC, agreed with the SIMC representative’s points of view. He also suggested the possibility of Vietnam’s accession to the Singapore Convention on Mediation 2018. Accordingly, VMC is working to achieve the goal of promoting the use of mediation in resolving commercial disputes as well as persuading the Vietnamese Government to join the Convention.

At the end of the meeting, VIAC and VMC expressed gratitude to SIMC representatives for sharing their insights. In addition to the economic, cultural, and social aspects, the legal system of Singapore also provides favorable conditions for the development of arbitration and mediation. VIAC and VMC always look forward to cooperation and learn from the successful experience in developing ADRs, particularly arbitration and mediation. These valuable experiences would be applied appropriately to promote the development of these dispute resolution methods in Vietnam.




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