GAR 100 - 7th Edition

Rodyk & Davidson

Professional notice

Singapore’s oldest law firm has been helping Laos in connection with an investment dispute

People in Who's Who:
Pending cases as counsel:
Value of pending counsel work:
US$1.6 billion
Treaty cases:
Current arbitrator appointments:
20 (of which 15 are s sole or chair)
No. of lawyers sitting as arbitrator:

Rodyk & Davidson was established in 1861, making it Singapore’s oldest law firm. With a team of 200 lawyers, it is also one of the city state’s largest full-service outfits, with five main groups – corporate; finance; IP and technology; real estate; and litigation and arbitration.

Its most prominent arbitration practitioner is managing partner Philip Jeyaretnam SC, who is also chairman of Singapore’s well-known arbitration venue, Maxwell Chambers. Other names to know are Lawrence Teh, who heads the IBA’s recently formed Asia-Pacific arbitration group and Lok Vi Ming SC, the current president of the Singapore Law Society.

Some 10 partners in total work in the practice area, with several of its members listed on the arbitrator panels of SIAC, the KLRCA and Chinese institutions in Shanghai, Chongqing and Huizhou. Its arbitration cases are all contract-based.


The firm has offices in Singapore and Shanghai, and strategic alliances throughout the region, enabling it, in its own words, to provide “effective representation across Asia”.

Who uses it?

Known clients are Indonesian state-owned energy company Perusahaan Gas Negara; Symrise Asia Pacific, one of the leading suppliers of fragrances, flavourings and active ingredients for the perfume, cosmetics and food industries; and Everfirst Mining. Other clients are in the banking, chemicals and shipping sectors. Its government clients include Laos.

Track record

The firm successfully handled the fastest arbitration in SIAC’s history on behalf of a clean energy company that brought a claim against Indonesian respondents in relation to the purchase of nickel mines. Rodyk obtained interim injunctive relief and then a favourable arbitration award for specific performance within 60 days of the notice of arbitration. This time period included an evidential hearing lasting five days.

As reported in GAR, the firm acted for Perusahaan Gas Negara in a court application to set aside an arbitral award ordering it to pay US$17.3 million. The case raised novel and difficult questions concerning the dispute resolution clause in the FIDIC Red Book and resulted in the Court of Appeal giving valuable guidance to international construction lawyers dealing with dispute adjudication board decisions.

Going back to 2010, the firm successfully enforced a Danish Arbitration Institute award against Singapore investment group Ultrapolis in the Singapore Court of Appeal on behalf of a Danish company contracted to design a mega yacht. The High Court decision in that case was the first local decision to have considered the UK Supreme Court decision in Dallah v Pakistan.

It is acting in other arbitration-related litigation including acting for an Indian developer in an application to the Singapore High Court for interim injunctive relief in support of ad hoc international arbitration in Singapore.

Recent events

In September 2013, the Rodyk team helped Laos obtain subpoenas from the Singapore High Court, compelling audit firm EY to produce documents in support of two investment treaty claims the state is defending. Another firm is representing Laos in the arbitrations, which are worth US$700 million and concern a hotel and casino

Partner Lawrence Teh formed the IBA Asia Pacific Arbitration Group to provide a forum and platform for Asia-Pacific region practitioners.

Rodyk's Arbitration Practice comprises practitioners who are experienced and knowledgeable in a broad range of industries and business sectors. Our arbitrators have handled large and complex disputes that require specialist insight into the client’s industry and are sensitive to the client’s specific business concerns.

Rodyk offers a comprehensive range of services from advising and representing clients in arbitration hearings to drafting the arbitration clauses, selecting the appropriate venue and arbitral process, and advising on the appointment of arbitrators, to enforcing arbitral awards.

We have represented our clients in both domestic and international arbitrations and have advised on the major arbitral institutions and arbitration rules, including ICC, SIAC, CIETAC, HKIAC, ICSID, AAA, LCIA, LMAA, SCC, UNCITRAL and WIPO.

Our lawyers are appointed Fellows of the Singapore Institute of Arbitrators and members of the Regional Panel of Arbitrators of the Singapore International Arbitration Centre. Our senior practitioners who frequently serve as local and international arbitrators, arbitrate in all areas of law, including commercial, construction, aviation and marine cases.

They serve in both institutional and ad hoc arbitrations.

Our expertise includes:

  • Domestic arbitration
  • International arbitration
  • International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID)

About Rodyk & Davidson LLP Established in 1861, Rodyk & Davidson LLP is Singapore's oldest law practice. A full service firm with offices in Singapore and Shanghai, Rodyk has an established regional presence and is particularly respected for our China Practice, India Practice and Indonesia Practice.

For more information, please visit

Contact Partner:
Philip Jeyaretnam, SC
Managing Partner
+65 6885 3605 (Direct)
[email protected]

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