In the recent case of CIP v CIQ  SGHC(I) 13, the applicant sought to set aside an arbitration award on inter alia the following grounds:
(i) The Award contains a decision that was: (a) beyond the scope of the parties’ submission to the
Arbitration; and (b) made without giving the applicant a full opportunity to present its case and respond.
(ii) The consistently uneven application of procedural rules between the parties, particularly the Tribunal’s
failure to allow the applicant to adduce the Surface Rights Email in evidence, constituted breaches of
the rules of natural justice.
(iii) By ordering the applicant to specifically perform an obligation not found in the contractual documents
(viz, to transfer the Surface Rights to the respondent at cost) the Award contains a decision on matters
beyond the scope of the parties’ submission to the Arbitration.
The SICC dismissed the application to set aside by concluding that the matters disputed were well within the scope of the matters submitted to the Tribunal. The Tribunal provided each party with the opportunity to put its arguments as to whether the amendment should be permitted. Both parties took up those opportunities and neither before nor after the amendment was allowed did the applicant raise with the Tribunal that it had been prejudiced. It is also clear that the Tribunal applied itself appropriately to each of the applications, taking into account the relevant matters that were before it at the time of those applications. The court also found that there is no evidence of inappropriate or uneven treatment of the parties. Based on these premises, the court ruled that the Tribunal did not stray beyond matters that were submitted to it for determination.
This decision highlights the high threshold required to succeed in a setting aside application. This pro arbitration stance means that applicants should ensure there is cogent and sufficient evidence to support its application to avoid having its application dismissed.