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mediator dispute problem conflictThe preamble to the Singapore Convention (the Convention) states that “mediation is increasingly used in international and domestic commercial practice as an alternative to litigation,” “the use of mediation results in significant benefits” and “the establishment of a framework for international settlement agreements resulting from mediation … would contribute to the development of harmonious international economic relations.”

The Convention is not about primacy of mediation over arbitration or litigation. It is about assuring the increasing viability of international commerce. The United Nation’s International Trade Law’s (UNCITRAL) working committee crafted the Convention with particular care so as not to create a schism within the legal community nor unduly complicate the life of legal practitioners. The end result is a protocol that will increase the range and impact of practitioners’ tools to employ in pursuit of the economic interests of their clients and their commercial relations.

The Convention will have a profound impact on the practice of law in New York, the epicenter of global finance and commerce. This article will provide a primer for New York practitioners on the Convention, including these key insights:

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