Singapore Law Ministry launches new Dispute Protocol to minimize overruns in infrastructure projects

Dispute Board

The new Singapore Infrastructure Dispute-Management Protocol will help parties proactively manage differences to prevent them from escalating into disputes, and minimize the risks of time and cost overruns.

Under the new protocol, parties will from the start of the project appoint a Dispute Board comprising up to three neutral professionals who are experts in relevant fields such as engineering, quantity surveying and law.

The Dispute Board will follow the project from start to finish and proactively help to manage issues that may arise, through a range of customized dispute avoidance and resolution processes.

This new protocol builds on international best practices and introduces a few novel features to address the challenges complex infrastructure projects face currently:

  1. First, it takes a proactive dispute prevention approach. The Dispute Board is appointed from the start of the project, rather than only after disputes have arisen. It helps anticipate issues and prevent differences from snowballing and escalating into full-blown disputes which become difficult and expensive to resolve.
  2. Second, should disputes arise, it provides a wider range of methods which can help address the disputes at hand. These include mediation, opinion and determination.
  3. Third, it provides full professional and administrative support through the Singapore International Mediation Centre (SIMC) and the Singapore Mediation Centre (SMC) which can help with identifying and appointing Dispute Board members as well as with meeting, escrow and other administrative services. [read more]

Source: Jewel Stolarchuk | The Independent

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