Jonathan Lim is a triple-qualified English solicitor, Singapore advocate, and New York lawyer with a focus on complex international disputes. He has a broad practice representing clients in all types of commercial and investment treaty arbitrations seated in common law and civil law jurisdictions worldwide, including England, New York, Singapore, Hong Kong, France, Brazil, The Netherlands, and Switzerland. His experience also includes ad hoc and institutional arbitrations under the rules of the HKIAC, ICC, ICDR, LCIA, PCA, SIAC, UNCITRAL, and others. He has represented both private sector and government clients in the aerospace, construction, energy, financial services, insurance, telecommunications, technology, and retail sectors, among others. Mr Lim has also worked on WTO dispute settlement matters and advised international organisations and governments in Africa and Asia on public international law issues.  

As part of an engagement by the ADB, Mr. Lim advised Palau, Papua New Guinea, Tonga, and Timor Leste on their accessions to the New York Convention. Mr Lim also worked closely with the ADB and UNCITRAL to advise governments in the South Pacific on the drafting of legislation, and he played a key role in the drafting of the 2017 Fiji International Arbitration Act, the 2020 Tonga International Arbitration Act, as well as related subsidiary legislation.  He continues to be engaged by the ADB to advise on legislation drafting in Palau, Papua New Guinea, and Timor Leste. Mr. Lim also previously assisted with the drafting of freedom of information and fisheries legislation in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq and Somalia, and he is one of the founding members of a task force formed to assist with Somalia’s accessions to the New York Convention and the World Trade Organization.

Mr. Lim regularly sits as arbitrator and has received appointments as sole and party-appointed arbitrator in multiple proceedings seated in Europe and Asia.  These include Chinese language arbitrations, bilingual English-Chinese arbitrations, as well as arbitrations governed by Chinese law, English law, German law, Singapore law and the CISG. Mr. Lim was recently Secretary to the Drafting Committee for the AFSA International Arbitration Rules, and played a significant role in the drafting of the revised rules, which came into effect on 1 June 2021. Mr. Lim also assisted the SIAC Rules Revision Executive Committee, then chaired by Gary Born, in the most recent revision of the SIAC Rules in 2016. 

Mr. Lim is Co-Chair of the Asia-Pacific Forum for International Arbitration, a Member of the AFSA International Court, and a member of the SIAC Users Council. He is an Associate Editor of the African Journal of International Arbitration.

Mr. Lim is a Visiting Senior Fellow at the National University of Singapore, where he has taught commercial and investment arbitration since 2016.  He has also lectured at the China University of Political Science and Law, King’s College London, the London School of Economics, the National Law School of India University (Bangalore), the National University of Juridical Sciences (Kolkata), and the Singapore Management University.  He also publishes and speaks regularly on international arbitration and financial regulation.

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.


  • Representing a European investor in a PCA-administered 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, with over $300 million 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.
  • Sole arbitrator in an SIAC arbitration dispute seated in Singapore arising out of a joint venture agreement governed by Singapore law.
  • Sole arbitrator in three related SIAC arbitration disputes seated in Singapore arising out of sale of goods contracts governed by the CISG.
  • Party-appointed arbitrator in a post-M&A DIS arbitration dispute seated in Munich, Germany, arising out of a sale and purchase agreement governed by German law.
  • Represented and obtained a highly favorable award for 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.
  • 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 and obtained a successful settlement for 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 successfully 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.


    • Award Text

      International Arbitration 45 Under 45

       Global Arbitration Review


    • Award Text

      Recognized for International Arbitration

      Chambers UK, Legal 500 UK


    • Award Text

      Arbitration Future Leaders

      Who’s Who Legal


  • Ranked among the leading international arbitration lawyers in Chambers UK 2024, which shares he is “tireless and analyses issues thoroughly,” and “provides excellent output and delivery.”
  • Highlighted in the 2024 edition of The Legal 500 UK in the areas of international arbitration and public international law.
  • Mr. Lim was named in Global Arbitration Review’s 45 Under 45 list 2023. He has been recognized as a leading under-45 arbitrator and practitioner in Who's Who Legal: Arbitration Future Leaders 2018–2024. Clients and peers describe him as “highly intelligent, articulate and very professional.” 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” and describe him 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.”
  • Mr. Lim was also recognized in Euromoney's LMG Rising Stars Expert Guide in 2021 for commercial arbitration in the United Kingdom.

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

    • England and Wales

    • New York

    • Singapore

  • Languages

    • Chinese (Mandarin)

    • Indonesian



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