The year 2019 was a milestone year for alternative dispute resolution (“ADR“) in the Philippines. It saw the inaugural Philippine Arbitration Convention organized by the Philippine Institute of Arbitrators (“PIArb“) on 25 November 2019 (the “Arbitration Day“), the signing of the Convention on International Settlement Agreements Resulting from Mediation (the “Singapore Convention“), the implementation of…

On the 60th year of the signing of the New York Convention, the Philippines’ Supreme Court, for the first time, declared its adoption of a narrow definition of “public policy” under the said convention. In Mabuhay Holdings Corporation v Sembcorp Logistics Limited, G.R. No. 212734, 5 December 2018, it held that “[m]ere errors in the interpretation of…

Introduction On 12 July 2016, a five-member arbitral tribunal (the Tribunal) constituted under Annex VII of the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) issued its long-awaited award on the merits in an arbitration brought by the Philippines against China. The tribunal’s jurisdiction is derived from UNCLOS; all State parties to UNCLOS…