Bahrain, Singapore Forge Alliance to Establish BICC

Bahrain, Singapore Forge Alliance to Establish BICC

Manama, The Gulf Observer: The Government of Bahrain and Singapore solidified their commitment to international commerce and legal cooperation with the signing of a groundbreaking treaty today. The accord establishes the Bahrain International Commercial Court (BICC) in Bahrain and designates a corresponding entity in Singapore.

The treaty, inked during a virtual meeting by Nawaf bin Mohamed Al Maawda, Bahrain’s Minister of Justice, Islamic Affairs and Endowments, and Kasiviswanathan Shanmugam, Singapore’s Minister for Home Affairs and Minister for Law, aims to bolster the international rule of law and facilitate global trade by implementing innovative mechanisms for resolving disputes in international commerce.

This historic agreement seeks to cultivate transformative systems for dispute resolution in international trade, endorsing a transnational framework of commercial justice. Negotiated with careful consideration, the treaty strikes a delicate balance between party autonomy and public policy, offering opt-in and opt-out models for the commercial court and the appeal mechanism. The provision for the re-issuance of decisions ensures the safeguarding of public policy principles.

By fostering collaboration between the two international commercial courts, Bahrain and Singapore aspire to establish higher standards for resolving international commercial disputes, addressing the challenges encountered by parties seeking redress for their grievances.

The signing of this treaty represents a significant milestone following the earlier signing of the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on Cooperation and Memorandum of Guidance between the judiciaries of Bahrain and Singapore. Chief Justice Menon’s visit to Bahrain in May 2023 paved the way for enhanced legal cooperation between the two nations.

Minister Al Maawda hailed the treaty as a transformative stride towards fortifying the rule of law and facilitating international access to justice. He emphasized that the framework established by this treaty will safeguard the interests and rights of the global business community.

Jan Paulsson, Judge of the Bahrain Court of Cassation, highlighted Singapore’s esteemed Singapore International Commercial Court as a testament to its commitment to judicial excellence. He remarked that the BICC will eventually handle all international arbitration-related cases, complementing Bahrain’s existing bilingual jurisdiction and international judicial practices.

The establishment of the Bahrain International Commercial Court represents a significant advancement in Bahrain’s legal landscape, positioning the nation as a hub for international commercial dispute resolution and enhancing its appeal as a destination for global investment.