In brief

Q. What happens if one High Court recognizes an arbitral award but another High Court refuses to recognize the identical arbitral award?

A. In Masenang Sdn Bhd v. Sabanilam Enterprise Sdn Bhd, the Federal Court was faced with this situation. [1] The Federal Court unanimously decided on 3.9.2021, that the seat of arbitration cannot simply be “Malaysia” as a whole, even for domestic arbitrations. The seat, i.e., a specific site in Malaysia, must be stated, and the courts in that location shall have exclusive supervisory jurisdiction. Because it would “give rise to deception and disorder,” and the party can no longer bring a challenge to the courts anywhere in Malaysia.

What is the law that governs both domestic and international arbitrations?

Decision of Federal court