Singapore, Japan mediation centres to launch expedited mediation process

The joint protocol is expected to be formally launched on 20 November.

The Singapore International Mediation Centre (SIMC) and Japan International Mediation Center (JIMC) have signed a memorandum of understanding to operate a joint protocol that provides cross-border businesses a lift for resolving commercial disputes amidst the COVID-19 pandemic, an announcement revealed.

The JIMC-SIMC Joint Protocol claims to be the first joint mediation protocol between two international dispute resolution centres committed to providing expedited mediation during the pandemic. It is SIMC’s first such collaboration with an overseas mediation centre, following the SIMC Covid-19 Protocol in May.

The coming into force of the Singapore Convention on Mediation also allows parties to enforce settlement agreements in the jurisdictions that have ratified the Convention, including Singapore.

SIMC also added that they are working with partners around the world on similar protocols that are customised to the needs of specific jurisdictions.

Mediations may be filed at either JIMC or SIMC online by paying a filing fee of JPY20,000 or $250. JIMC and SIMC will jointly manage mediations, where sases will be resolved by two experienced mediators (one nominated by each centre) to facilitate cross-border settlement.

Parties will also be able enjoy fixed and reduced fees adapted for the Japanese market. For example, for disputes of less than $1.3m, each party pays $6,500. Mediation can also be conducted online to overcome the current limitations on travel.

The joint protocol is expected to be formally launched on 20 November.

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