Arbitration - Award - Recourse against award - Setting aside
Arbitration - Arbitral tribunal - Jurisdiction
International law - International investment law - Bilateral investment treaty - Investor-State arbitration
1. This is the first case in Singapore in which an investor-State arbitral award on the merits is sought to be set aside. It engages intriguing questions of arbitral and international investment law which have yet to be considered by a Singapore court.
2. The Kingdom of Lesotho ("the Kingdom") is a member of the Southern African Development Community ("the SADC"), an inter-governmental socio-Kingdom of Lesotho v Swissbourgh Diamond Mines (Pty) Ltd  SGHC 195 economic organisation comprising 15 Southern African States. The SADC was established by the Treaty of the Southern African Development Community (17 August 1992) 32 ILM 116 (entered into force 30 September 1993) ("the SADC Treaty") on 17 August 1992. The SADC Treaty also established a tribunal ("the SADC Tribunal") to ensure adherence to and to interpret the Treaty, with the jurisdiction to adjudicate disputes and issue advisory opinions. One of the SADC's objectives is to promote the economic growth of the region, to which end the SADC signed a Protocol on Finance and Investment ("the Investment Protocol") on 18 August 2006 (entered into force 16 April 2010). Importantly, amongst the various protections that the Investment Protocol conferred on investors was the option of referring certain investor-State disputes to international arbitration, under Annex 1 to the Investment Protocol ("Annex 1"). Various fora were provided therein, one of which was the SADC Tribunal. This complemented the existing procedural protection of referring disputes to the SADC Tribunal under the provisions of the SADC Treaty.