Kim Beng specialises in dispute resolution. He is extensively involved in complex commercial and infrastructure projects, many of which involve cross-border elements. Adept at handling simple contract disagreements to difficult, multi-faceted and intense challenges, he seeks foremost to understand client’s interests and help secure for them the best possible outcomes.
He regularly advises and acts for clients on projects in building and construction, investment and joint ventures, finance, mining and minerals, power and utilities, oil & gas and telecommunications infrastructure and networks. In addition to representing a number of public corporations in Singapore, he also acts for leading companies from Asia, Europe and North America, in their cross-border projects, disputes and international arbitration matters.
Recognitions and Appointments
Kim Beng is a Senior Accredited Specialist in Building and Construction Law, being one of under a dozen practitioners to receive this recognition inaugurated by the Singapore Academy of Law in 2018 for professional excellence in these areas of practice.
He regularly receives appointments to act as arbitrator by the Singapore International Arbitration Centre.
He is consistently recommended and ranked by various legal publications, with recent examples being:
- Legal 500 Asia Pacific (2015 and 2017 editions) – International Arbitration and Construction
- IFLR 1000 (2015 to 2018 editions) – Leading Lawyer for Energy and Infrastructure disputes
- Chambers Asia Pacific (2018 edition) – Construction
He is Adjunct Faculty at the Singapore Management University, teaching the course on International Construction Law.
He also contributes to law reform efforts of the Law Reform Committee of the Singapore Academy of Law, participating as a member of the Sub-Committee for the Review of Building and Construction Law in Singapore.
Kim Beng’s experience includes:
- Acting for a leading South East Asian resource owner against a global engineering group in disputes over claims in excess of US$100 million, in relation to a mining project in Asia. The disputes involve complex issues of plant design and engineering, and project management, procurement and coordination of construction works involving over 250 contractors and trades (and over US$350 million in aggregate value). Arbitration proceedings under the SIAC Rules over a portion of the disputes are in progress. The governing law of the contract is English law.
- Acting for one of Indonesia's largest mining companies in disputes with the EPCM contractors in a US$180 million bulk handling conveyor project. The disputes involve three contracts involving two different entities, with each contract governed by different laws, and involve legal and technical issues that are multi-layered and highly complex.
- Acting for a global infrastructure solutions company in disputes with the employer and with sub-contractors and vendors on the wrongful repudiation of a US$120 million contract for the design, engineering, supply and installation of a rail propulsion system. The assessment of damages is complex, involving hundreds of sub-contracts and vendor/supplier contracts under different governing laws, with multiple considerations on mitigation.
- Advising the client, which is a joint venture involving the participation of a global port operator, in disputes with the Chinese entity engaged to design and construct a container terminal in the Middle East. The disputes are on claims involving issues of delay, extensions of time, loss and expense claims including prolongation costs, works optimisation and value engineering, and dissatisfaction with determinations by the Engineer. The contract is based on the FIDIC form, and arbitration will be administered by the ICC.
- Advising a power and utilities company on claims and issues arising from an EPC project for a 10 million kilowatts power plant development in Asia. The total contract amount is in excess of US$1.6 billion. The plan is designed to be equipped with coal-fired units of the largest single-machine capacity in Southeast Asia - representing the highest level of coal-fired power technology in the world. The EPC contract is based on the FIDIC form of contract.
- Acting for an owner and operator of power assets in the region a dispute over the EPC contract for the design and construction of a 2x100 MW coal-fired power plant. Issues in dispute include rights of access and to easements; entitlement to extensions of time and claims for prolongation and acceleration; and consequential liabilities under the Power Purchase Agreement.
- Advised and acted for one of the region’s largest offshore engineering services contractor in a dispute over a US$400 million contract for the FEED, procurement of processing plant and living quarters of a floating production storage and off-take platform. The disputes revolved around issues of failure of design and engineering, non-conformances in the works, and delays to completion, and include issues of causation; contractual notification requirements; limits of liability; warranties and indemnities. Governing law of the contract was English law. In addition to claims over the substantive performance of the works, the disputes also involved issues of the applicable law in an application for interim relief before foreign courts to support an arbitration.
- Advised and acted on dispute over an EPC contract for the topsides to a production, drilling and quarters platform for the Ivar Aasen Development Project. In addition to claims over the performance of the works, the disputes involved issues of representations and warranties in reimbursement contracts; and the exercise of rights to conduct audits.
- Advised and acted for a U.S. multi-national public company in a dispute over a mechanical works and engineering contract in an EPC contract for a chemicals plant. The factual issues revolve around claims of defective design; non-conformances in the works; acts of prevention and delays to completion, and involve legal issues of causation; contractual notification requirements; limits of liability; warranties and indemnities.
- Acting for a European multi-national company in disputes arising out of an agreement for the construction and supply of wind turbine generators located in the northeastern region of Thailand. The issues in dispute include claims of delays and disruptions in works, alleged defects, and for unpaid amounts owed estimated at US$40 million.
- Acting for a global vendor of building efficiency products and services in an ad hoc arbitration against a subsidiary of a global conglomerate over disputes arising from the design and construction of a cooling plant in Singapore. The disputes involve complex and highly technical issues of high voltage electrical design and equipment manufacture, as well as on the design, engineering, operation and maintenance of cooling plants.
- Advising one of the region’s leading oil and gas infrastructure services companies, in a dispute arising out of a joint venture agreement with a public-listed European technology company. The disputes relate to an undertaking to construct and operate a state-of-the-art, one-of-its-kind "clean-energy and waste treatment" plant. The disputes relate to all aspects of the undertaking, including finance, security, joint venture relationships and construction.
Building & Construction
- Advising and acting on a dispute with a European contractor on a project for the design and construction of a 22 mega watt Tier III data centre in Europe, involving the NEC form of contract. Issues in dispute include formation of contract; design and programming defaults; delays and claims for extension of time; and contract renunciation and termination.
- Representing the regional arm of a leading global construction corporation in respect of an SIA arbitration involving a dispute against a Singapore company regarding the construction of a prestigious office development. The dispute is governed by the laws of Singapore. The disputed amount is estimated at S$40 million. The dispute involves issues of delay and concurrent delay, prolongation, extensions of time, liquidated damages, variations, defects liability and warranty claims.
- Representing an international building contractor in various disputes on the various construction projects in Singapore, including prestige residential developments; mixed-use retail commercial and residential developments; institutions; and government buildings. The disputes typically involve issues of delay and concurrent delay, prolongation, extensions of time, liquidated damages, variations, defects liability and warranty claims.
- Advising and acting for a major insurance corporation with over S$60 billion in assets, on various contractual and project-related issues arising from the design and construction of a mixed retail and office development in Singapore.
- Acting for a specialist sub-contractor in a High Court suit against the main contractor involving claims in excess of S$17 million, arising out of the Terminal 3, Singapore Changi Airport project.
- Advising and acting for a global chemicals company in a dispute with a utilities supply company on disputes arising from a contract for the supply of utilities and off-take agreement. In dispute are issues including vitiation of contract and the foreseeability of revisions to water price tariffs.
- Acting for a leading global oil and gas service provider, publicly listed on the main board of a South East Asian country, in claims against an African oil and gas contractor specialising in well construction and remedial services. The claims involve unpaid sums said to be wrongful withheld under an agreement for the acquisition of shares in a company owning significant oil & gas related assets. The respondent has also made counterclaims arising from allegations of warranty breaches, involving Singapore law and Nigerian law.
- Acting for a significant oil and gas entity in relation to a US$30 million claim over the sale and purchase of shares in two oil and gas exploration companies under SIAC rules. The claim arises from the sale of two oil and gas companies in Indonesia, and the allegations that the basis of certain tax obligations were not accurate. In particular, the cases involve complex issues of the arbitrability of tax disputes, and also the implementation of a new legislation relating to the sale of oil and gas companies under Indonesian law.
- Acting for a major property developer in an arbitration on various disputes and issues arising from its US$140 million contract for the sale and purchase of a major mixed commercial residential and retail complex in Vietnam, governed by Vietnamese law. The arbitration gave rise to a challenge against the office of the Emergency Arbitrator appointed on the application by the purchaser for certain interim reliefs – a first under the particular arbitration rules.
- Acting for a global building protection and security solutions company against an Asian contractor, in disputes arising from a manufacturing and supply agreement, involving issues relating to volume commitments and adjustments for price fluctuations based on market forces. The contract is governed by Taiwanese law.
- Acting for a concessionaire with rights to a natural gas field in a South-East Asian country in an arbitration against a drilling contractor, over disputes involving drilling works for an exploration project, with claims in excess of US$10 million.
- Acting for and advising a global telecommunications network services provider in upstream and downstream disputes in South-East Asia, involving claims in excess of US$10 million.
- Acting for and advising a U.S. public-listed contractor in the petroleum industry on disputes arising from various contracts relating to the supply of specialist equipment and construction of various semi-submersible offshore oil drilling vessels, with claims in excess of US$25 million.
- Acting for a Cayman-registered company in an ICC dispute against a subsidiary of a European conglomerate, in a dispute arising from an agreement for the sale and purchase of shares in a public-listed manufacturing company in Asia.
- Advising a private equity fund on disputes among its shareholders concerning investments in telecommunications infrastructure in South-East Asia.
- Advising an international banking corporation on claims arising from various foreign exchange derivative transactions under ISDA contracts, amounting to US$49 million.
- Acting in an ad hoc arbitration under the UNCITRAL Rules, against a European conglomerate over claims arising out of an agreement for the sale and purchase of shares.
- Acting for a regional commodities company in an SIAC arbitration on disputes arising from various contracts for the sale and purchase of coal.
Memberships / Directorships
- Member, Law Reform Committee of the Singapore Academy of Law : Sub-Committee for the Review of Building and Construction Law in Singapore
- Member, Law Society of Singapore
- Member, Singapore Academy of Law