Uni-Navigation Pte Ltd v Wei Loong Shipping Pte Ltd

JurisdictionSingapore
CourtHigh Court (Singapore)
JudgeG P Selvam JC
Judgment Date28 November 1992
Neutral Citation[1992] SGHC 293
Citation[1992] SGHC 293
Plaintiff CounselAugustine Liew (Haridass Ho & Partners)
Docket NumberAdmiralty in Personam No 489 of 1992
Publication Date19 September 2003
Defendant CounselBeh Eng Siew (YM Jumabhoy & Co)
Date28 November 1992
SubjectArbitration,Defendants' right to stay of proceedings,Admiralty action in personam instituted in High Court,Stay of court proceedings,Whether claim came within ambit of arbitration clause,Inherent jurisdiction,Court's discretion,Right to stay of proceedings,Stay of proceedings,s 7 Arbitration Act (Cap 10),Claim for freight,Civil Procedure,Disputes in charterparty to be referred to arbitration,Proceedings instituted in High Court,Arbitration clause,High Court's jurisdiction to prevent abuse of process of court,Whether court had jurisdiction to decide claim,Amount in dispute within jurisdiction of subordinate courts
Introduction

This was an appeal against an order made by Assistant Registrar Mr Christopher Tang staying the proceedings on the ground that the subject matter of the action was to be determined by arbitration.

The facts of the case are as follows. The plaintiffs were the owners of the Singapore registered ship Allissa. By a charterparty in the Gencon form they chartered the ship to the defendants to load a cargo of about 14,000 metric tons of bagged cement at Padang, Indonesia for carriage to and discharge at two named Bangladesh ports. The freight payable was at US$14.25 per ton. Freight was deemed earned as cargo was on board, discountless and non-returnable. The plaintiffs claimed that the ship carried a total cargo of 15,400 tons and earned freight in the sum of US$219,450.

Clause 8 on the payment of freight read as follows:
Ninety-five percent (95%) freight paid within three (3) banking days after completion of loading upon signing/releasing first set bill of lading marked `freight collect` at loadport and second set freight prepaid bill of lading at Singapore against charterers` letter of indemnity and confirmation of freight remittance.



The charterparty was silent on when the remaining 5% freight (US$10,972.50) was payable.

The defendants conceded that on the quantity of 15,400mt of cargo the freight earned was US$219,450 and that the ship had earned US$27,449.92 as demurrage at loading port. These two amounts totalled US$246,899.92.

The defendants paid US$178,891.25 being 95% of US$219.450. But they also cross-claimed amounts in respect of additional premium, address commission, discharge, port disbursements and despatch earned at discharge ports. These amounted to $85,459.93. In addition the defendants made claims for lightening expenses and short landing of cargo. The total of these additional claims was US$43,082.08.

Thus there were owners` claims for balance of freight and demurrage and charterers` cross-claims. The charterparty contained an arbitration clause:

Should any dispute arise between owners and charterers, the matter shall be referred to three (3) persons in Singapore, one to be appointed by each of the parties hereto and the third by the two so chosen. Their decision or that of any two of them shall be final and for the purpose of endorsing any award this agreement may be made a rule of court. The arbitrators shall be commercial men and English law to apply.



In compliance with the arbitration clause arbitrators were appointed in March...

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20 cases
  • Coop International Pte Ltd v Ebel SA
    • Singapore
    • High Court (Singapore)
    • 4 March 1998
    ...(folld) Tengku Aishah v Wardley Ltd [1992] 3 SLR (R) 503; [1993] 1 SLR 337 (folld) Uni-Navigation Pte Ltd v Wei Loong Shipping Pte Ltd [1992] 3 SLR (R) 595; [1993] 1 SLR 876 (folld) Wade-Gery v Morrison (1877) 37 LT 270 (distd) Wardley Ltd v Tunku Adnan [1991] 1 SLR (R) 661; [1991] SLR 721 ......
  • Multiplex Constructions Pty Ltd v Sintal Enterprise Pte Ltd
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    • Court of Three Judges (Singapore)
    • 3 March 2005
    ...this court adopted the following observation of G P Selvam JC (as he then was) in Uni-Navigation Pte Ltd v Wei Loong Shipping Pte Ltd [1993] 1 SLR 876 at 879, [16] and The common form arbitration agreement provides for disputes to be decided by arbitrators. In such a case the court should, ......
  • Mae Engineering Ltd v Dragages Singapore Pte Ltd (fka Dragages et Travaux Publics (S) Pte Ltd)
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    • High Court (Singapore)
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    ...Tong Chinese Temple v Fong Choon Hung Construction Pte Ltd [1998] 2 SLR 143 (folld) Uni-Navigation Pte Ltd v Wei Loong Shipping Pte Ltd [1993] 1 SLR 876 (folld) Legislation referred to Arbitration Act (Cap 10) 7. Judgment GROUNDS OF DECISION 1. The plaintiffs, Mae Engineering Ltd ("Mae......
  • Kwan Im Tong Chinese Temple and Another v Fong Choon Hung Construction Pte Ltd
    • Singapore
    • Court of Three Judges (Singapore)
    • 6 February 1998
    ...169 (refd) Peak Construction Ltd v McKinney Foundations Ltd (1971) 69 LGR 1 (refd) Uni-Navigation Pte Ltd v Wei Loong Shipping Pte Ltd [1992] 3 SLR (R) 595; [1993] 1 SLR 876 (folld) Arbitration Act (Cap 10,1985 Rev Ed)s 7 (consd) Rules of Court (Cap 322,R 5, 1997 Rev Ed)O 14 Civil Procedure......
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4 books & journal articles
  • Arbitration
    • Singapore
    • Singapore Academy of Law Annual Review Nbr. 2014, December 2014
    • 1 December 2014
    ...The court noted that both decisions had cited with approval the discussion in Uni-Navigation Pte Ltd v Wei Loong Shipping Pte Ltd[1992] 3 SLR(R) 595 at [17], which stated that when a defendant makes out a prima facie case of disputes the courts should not embark on an examination of the val......
  • Arbitration
    • Singapore
    • Singapore Academy of Law Annual Review Nbr. 2005, December 2005
    • 1 December 2005
    ...Building Services (Pte) Ltd v Greatearth Construction Pte Ltd[1994] 3 SLR 330; and Uni-Navigation Pte Ltd v Wei Loong Shipping Pte Ltd[1993] 1 SLR 876. 3.2 A more enlightened approach appears to have been taken in the decision of Woo Bih Li J in Dalian Hualiang Enterprise Group Co Ltd v Lou......
  • Building and Construction Law
    • Singapore
    • Singapore Academy of Law Annual Review Nbr. 2018, December 2018
    • 1 December 2018
    ...(Singapore) Pte Ltd v Far East Square Pte Ltd [2018] SGHCR 11 at [38], citing Uni-Navigation Pte Ltd v Wei Loong Shipping Pte Ltd [1992] 3 SLR(R) 595 at [15]. 50 Yau Lee Construction (Singapore) Pte Ltd v Far East Square Pte Ltd [2018] SGHCR 11 at [53]. 51 Yau Lee Construction (Singapore) P......
  • ENFORCEMENT OF ARBITRATION AGREEMENTS UNDER THE INTERNATIONAL ARBITRATION ACT 1994
    • Singapore
    • Singapore Academy of Law Journal Nbr. 1995, December 1995
    • 1 December 1995
    ...the court is not to look into the merits of the dispute but to order stay, leaving the merit to be decided by the arbitrator. 44 [1993] 1 SLR 876. 45 Cf supra, notes 36 and 40. 46 See Tradax International SA v Cerrahogullari TAS[1981] 2 QB 169, The “M Eregli”. 47 Unreported, summarised in C......

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