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International Mediation Developments

by Keith Seat
November 2012 Keith Seat
Here is another in a series of updates on the international development of mediation from News Editor, Keith Seat.

  • The Dubai Chamber of Commerce and Industry in the United Arab Emirates is handling increasing numbers of commercial disputes through mediation:  200 mediation cases in 1996 increased to nearly 400 in 2005 and over 850 last year; the Chamber has begun an online mediation application process and recently presented a mediation seminar in association with the Singapore Mediation Centre. (September 24, 2012); Khaleej Times (September 16, 2012)

  • The importance of mediation and other forms of alternative dispute resolution for accelerating economic development was emphasized at the Sekondi-Takoradi Chamber of Commerce and Industry in GhanaDaily Guide Newspaper (August 23, 2012)

  • Delhi, India is commissioning two new mediation centers this year for a total of ten, but needs to move towards its goal of twenty centers, according to the Chief Minister, to help address a growing judicial backlog.  Business Standard (September 28, 2012)

  • Greek and Chinese companies are finding success in mediating disputes between them under a collaborative process that began 18 months ago.  Greek Reporter (October 16, 2012)

  • Courts in Shanghai, China will continue the principle of “Mediation First” in dealing with foreign-related cases, including those involving parties from Hong Kong, Taiwan and Macau; the number of foreign-related cases continues to grow due to the ongoing global financial crisis.  English (September 14, 2012)

  • Mediation is expanding in Hong Kong following Civil Justice Reforms and a new Mediation Ordinance that will take effect on January 1; a Hong Kong panel of 18 mediators has been launched by CEDR Asia Pacific, a division of the Centre for Effective Dispute Resolution.  Source Wire (October 22, 2012); (October 19, 2012)

  • The first alternative dispute resolution conference in Singapore was recently held at the Supreme Court and attended by 600 people, including policymakers from 15 countries; the Chief Justice encouraged mediation and a “culture of holistic resolution of disputes.”  Asia One (October 7, 2012)

  • The mediation unit of the Ministry of Labour in Fiji is increasingly successful, due to training provided by the Singapore Mediation Centre, which is providing additional training, including a one-day training for judges and magistrates.  The Fiji Times Online (September 11, 2012)


Keith L. Seat is a full-time mediator and arbitrator who can effectively assist parties in resolving a wide range of telecommunications, antitrust and other commercial disputes. With over twenty years of legal experience as a mediator, arbitrator, litigator, advocate before executive branch agencies, and key staffer in the legislative and judicial branches, Mr. Seat brings a wealth of experience to his work as a mediator and arbitrator to help parties reach successful resolutions of complex disputes.

Mr. Seat began his legal career in a federal clerkship with U.S. District Judge William H. Becker, and then litigated antitrust and commercial disputes for many years at a major Washington law firm, Howrey, Simon, Arnold & White, where he first worked on telecom and technology issues. In 1993, Mr. Seat was named General Counsel of the Antitrust, Business Rights and Competition Subcommittee of the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee, where he served for four years, playing a significant role in the enactment of the Telecommunications Act of 1996. Returning to the private sector in 1997, Mr. Seat rounded out his experience with a senior in-house counsel position at MCI, one of the nation’s largest telecommunications firms. At MCI, he gained a first-hand appreciation for the important perspective brought to issues and disputes by in-house decision-makers. Mr. Seat also deepened his knowledge of telecom issues and gained experience addressing competition-related issues in the corporate setting, as well as helping resolve disputes among large organizations.

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Additional articles by Keith Seat