Jonathan Lim

Jonathan Lim focuses his practice on international arbitration matters and complex multi-jurisdictional disputes. He has particular experience with disputes in the energy, financial services, technology and telecommunications sectors, and has represented clients in ad hoc and institutional arbitrations (including under the HKIAC, ICC, LCIA, SIAC and UNCITRAL Rules) in common law and civil law jurisdictions in Asia, Africa, Europe and the Americas. Mr. Lim has also worked on WTO dispute settlement matters involving claims under multiple WTO agreements (including GATT, GATS, TRIPS, TBT and SCM) and is part of the team representing the government of Somalia in its WTO accession process.

In addition to his practice as counsel, Mr. Lim has a developing practice as arbitrator and has received SIAC and DIS appointments as sole and party-appointed arbitrator in proceedings seated in Europe and Asia. He has also advised international organizations and governments in Africa and Asia on public international law issues (including state and international organization immunities, treaty accession, international trade law, and law of the sea) and assisted with the drafting of legislation in Fiji, Iraq, Papua New Guinea and Somalia.

Mr. Lim is also a Visiting Senior Fellow at the National University of Singapore, where he teaches a course on commercial and investment arbitration each year. He publishes and speaks regularly on international arbitration and financial regulation. He has also lectured on international arbitration and financial regulation at the Singapore Management University and the London School of Economics.

Prior to joining the firm, Mr. Lim worked with the World Bank's Finance, Private Sector and Infrastructure Practice Group in Washington DC. There, his portfolio included providing legal advisory services, on financial regulation, corporate insolvency and infrastructure-related issues, to developing country governments in Asia, Eastern Europe and the Pacific Islands. Mr. Lim also worked as a research fellow and associate for the Committee on Capital Markets Regulation in Cambridge, MA. He trained with a major Singapore law firm.

Professional Activities

Mr. Lim is appointed to the SIAC Users Council, the Young Singapore International Arbitration Centre Steering Committee, and the Committee (Singapore) for the CIArb Young Members Group. He is also co-chair of the Asia-Pacific Forum on International Arbitration and a member of its Executive Committee, and a member of the International Council for Commercial Arbitration, the Young International Arbitration Group and ICC Young Arbitrators Forum.


  • Representing a European investor in a UNCITRAL treaty arbitration against an Asian state in relation to claims arising out of the expropriation and unfair treatment of an investment in an agricultural business.
  • Representing a large Asian insurance company in a post M&A ICC arbitration seated in Hong Kong in relation to claims arising under a share purchase agreement for an acquisition in Korea, with over $1 billion in dispute.
  • Representing a large Asian technology company in connection with related NAI and CIETAC arbitrations in relation to claims arising under an investment agreement and technology licensing agreement, with over $2 billion in dispute.
  • Representing a state-owned oil and gas company in related ICC and UNCITRAL arbitrations in Asia in relation to claims arising under multiple production sharing contracts and bilateral investment treaties, with over $2.5 billion in dispute. 
  • Advising Asian governments on potential claims under various WTO Agreements (including GATT, GATS, TRIMS, TRIPS and SCM).
  • Advising the Federal Government of Somalia on its accessions to the WTO and the New York Convention.
  • Advising the Fiji, Papua New Guinea, Samoa, Tonga and Timor Leste governments on accession to the New York Convention and international arbitration legal reform in a project under the auspices of the Asian Development Bank and in coordination with UNCITRAL.
  • Represented and obtained a successful settlement for a Middle Eastern regional government in a $38 billion LCIA arbitration seated in London in relation to a claims arising out of the development of a gas field and the construction of an LPG plant, with more than $38 billion in dispute. The dispute also involved multiple related litigation proceedings in courts in the DIFC, Turkey, the United Kingdom and the United States.
  • Represented a global private equity firm in two related $560 million ICC arbitrations seated in Sao Paolo in relation to breaches of a share purchase agreement for an acquisition in Brazil. 
  • Represented a state-owned telecommunications company in defeating claims of more than $100 million in a UNCITRAL arbitration concerning a joint venture in Southeast Asia.
  • Represented oil and gas majors in gas price review arbitrations seated in New York and Geneva.
  • Represented an automobile manufacturer in a $2 billion ICC arbitration in relation to breaches of a joint venture agreement. 
  • Advised an African government on diplomatic immunities, immunities of UN Specialized Agencies, and remedies and obligations under the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea.


Mr. Lim was named as a leading under-45 arbitrator and practitioner in Who's Who Legal: Arbitration Future Leaders 2018–2020, with peers saying he is “highly intelligent, articulate and very professional” and “a sure bet as a future global leader.” Other sources say, “his work is consistently of a high quality and he never fails to provide top-of-the-class legal and strategic advice.” In the 2018 edition, respondents described Mr. Lim as "a very smart all-round lawyer with a strong work ethic," "able to digest and master a large amount of material very quickly" and "always available to provide creative and practical solutions.

Insights & News


  • Education

    • LLM, Harvard Law School, 2013

      Dean’s Scholar Prizes for International Finance, Law and Economic Development, and Regulation of Financial Institutions; Lee Foundation Scholarship
    • LLB, National University of Singapore, 2011

      Shook Lin & Bok Prize for Top Student, Law Society of Singapore Prize, C.J. Koh Scholarship
  • Admissions

    • New York

    • Singapore

  • Languages

    • Chinese (Mandarin)

    • Indonesian