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Wai Yue Loh

Partner and Chief Representative of Beijing Office, Beijing, Partner, Hong Kong and Joint Managing Director, Singapore Singapore T +86 (0) 10 5706 9588
waiyueloh@incegd.com

Department Maritime, Commodities & trade, Insurance Education (University) National University of Singapore Languages English, Mandarin, Cantonese, Fujian/Taiwanese and Bahasa Indonesia/Malay (Basic)

Wai Yue Loh

You, Wai Yue Loh
& Ince, in any case

Wai Yue is Joint Managing Director of our Singapore office, Chief Representative of Ince Beijing and Head of the China Practice in Singapore. He is a litigator specialising in shipping, international trade and insurance. Wai Yue is often ranked as a leading lawyer in China by various legal directories and is noted for being ‘commercial’ and a ‘strategist who can come up with detailed solutions’.

He advises clients on Charterparties, bills of lading, contracts for port services, unsafe port and cargo claims, and ship building/sale and purchase disputes. In addition, Wai Yue advises on contracts and disputes in relation to the trade of oil, bulk cargoes (including coal and iron ore) and trade finance. He also has extensive experience advising on insurance related disputes, both on issues of coverage and subrogated recoveries.

Apart from having spent his early years of his career as a lawyer working on complex cases in the High Court and the Court of Appeal in Singapore, focusing on shipping and international trade, Wai Yue has handled arbitrations in Singapore, London and Hong Kong as well as litigation and mediation across multiple jurisdictions.

A significant part of his practice involves representing various international clients (including Chinese clients) in both ad hoc and institutional arbitrations. He is particularly familiar with arbitrations carried out under the SIAC Rules, LCIA Rules, LMAA Rules, and HKIAC Rules, as well as with enforcement issues that arise following such arbitration proceedings.

With almost 20 years of experience in Singapore, China and internationally, Wai Yue’s expertise spreads across contracts and disputes in relation to the trading of oil, dry bulk cargoes (including coal and iron ore) and trade finance. He is also a leading lawyer on charterparties, bills of lading, contracts for port services, unsafe port and cargo claims, and ship building/sale and purchase disputes.

His experience and reputation particularly in the Chinese Hull & Machinery and Marine Cargo insurance markets also makes him a port of call for insurers and insureds on issues of coverage and subrogated recoveries. As a member of the Ince’s Asia Casualty Team, Wai Yue also has considerable experience in the investigation and handling of maritime casualties and claims.

Wai Yue practised in Singapore, Hong Kong and Shanghai before moving to Beijing in 2012 to set up the Ince Beijing office where he has been Managing Partner for the last 7 years, and is responsible for all aspects of the firm’s practice in northern China. He is a regular speaker, both regionally and internationally, on topics relating to commercial disputes, maritime law, international trade, and risk & compliance.

In addition to being a Singapore lawyer with rights of audience and extensive experience before the Singapore Courts, Wai Yue is also qualified to practise Hong Kong and English law, making him one of the few triple – qualified lawyers in Asia with a deep knowledge of the various legal systems and clients’ commercial needs within the region.

In January 2020, Wai Yue was recognised as a Senior Accredited Specialist in maritime and shipping law. The accreditation is awarded by the Singapore Academy of Law in recognition of those with extensive expertise in this area of practice.

Professional Associations:

  •  Law Society of England and Wales
  •  Law Society of Singapore
  •  Law Society of Hong Kong

My matter highlights

  • Advising various insurers and reinsurers in relation to legal issues arising out of the explosion at Tianjin port on 12 August 2015. 
  • Advising one of the world’s largest dry bulk shipping operators as well as one of China’s largest commodity traders on shipping and international trade issues arising out of the Ebola crisis including the applicability of a force majeure defence in relation to its contractual obligations in the epidemic in Sierra Leone.
  • Advising a major Chinese state-owned trading company claiming US$100 million damages in respect of a series of claims against multi-national oil companies arising out of delivery of off-spec oil cargoes tendered for loading in West Africa. Advising on a complex series of inter-related Commercial Court actions and LCIA arbitrations under a series of sales contracts and dealing with issues relating to defective delivery, non-delivery of contractual cargo and wrongful repudiation. Successfully achieved amicable resolution of dispute.
  • Advising a state-owned oil company in negotiating multiple brokerage agreements for the trading of commodity futures/derivatives with various Chinese and European banks, including the provision of margin lending facilities.
  • Advising major VLCC tanker charterers and oil traders against ship-owners in relation to claims under the contracts of carriage for delay in the arrival of the cargo, resulting in oil refineries’ losses.
  • Advising an oil trading company in relation to a disputed multi-million dollar claim under a standby letter of credit, including advising on and co-ordinating complex multijurisdictional and cross-border litigation involving Hong Kong and French law and banking practice under UCP600.
  • Successfully defended a large dry bulk shipping operator against a US$30 million exposure following mistaken payment of charter hire to insolvent shipowners rather than their financiers. This technically complex matter raised difficult questions on the law of assignment (both legal and equitable) and fraud. 

My testimonials and accolades

Wai Yue Loh

“Beneath his humble demeanour and commercial approach is a razor-sharp litigator's mind, with an in-depth knowledge of international trade and shipping law.”

- Chambers Asia

Wai Yue Loh

“Highly rated by clients... 'Brilliant in the way he deals with complexities.”

- Chambers Asia Pacific 2018

My recent publications

News / Incisive Law unveils new leadership appointments across practices in Singapore

27-10-2020 / Maritime

Incisive Law LLC, the Singapore member of The Ince Group, has today announced two new hires bolstering its regional admiral capabilities.

Incisive Law unveils new leadership appointments across practices in Singapore

News / The Ince Group strengthens Asia Pacific offer by strategic changes in Singapore

10-06-2020 /

The consolidation of Ince & Co Singapore LLP with Incisive Law LLC on 1 June 2020, together with a number of senior lateral hires signals a bright future.

The Ince Group strengthens Asia Pacific offer by strategic changes in Singapore

News / Coronavirus and its impact on your contract ꟷ can you rely on 'Force Majeure'?

14-02-2020 / Maritime

On 30 January 2020, the World Health Organization (WHO) declared that the outbreak of the Novel Coronavirus (officially the “COVID-19”) was a Public Health Emergency of International Concern. The virus has been spreading rapidly both within China and globally in recent months. Both the Chinese government and other countries have adopted various measures aimed at containing the spread of COVID-19. These measures are causing disruption to international trade and transport, with the consequence that many companies have found themselves either unable to perform their contractual obligations or at risk of not being able to do so in the future. Where affected or potentially affected contracts contain force majeure (“FM”) provisions, the parties should consider if and when these provisions might be successfully invoked as a result of the COVID-19 outbreak.

Coronavirus and its impact on your contract ꟷ can you rely on 'Force Majeure'?

News / Wai Yue Loh and Edgar Chin honoured as Senior Accredited Specialists by the Singapore Academy of Law

12-02-2020 / Maritime

12 February 2020, Singapore: The Ince Group is pleased to announce that Wai Yue Loh and Edgar Chin, both directors from Incisive Law LLC (which has a Formal Law Alliance with Ince Singapore) have been recognised as Senior Accredited Specialists, by the Singapore Academy of Law (SAL), for their expertise in maritime and shipping law.

Wai Yue Loh and Edgar Chin honoured as  Senior Accredited Specialists by the Singapore Academy of Law

News / Coronavirus: Legal issues and impact on International Trade & Transportation

04-02-2020 / Maritime

The novel coronavirus was first reported in late December 2019. The outbreak of the virus originated from the inland city of Wuhan, the capital of the Hubei province, PRC, but has quickly spread to coastal cities within China such as Shanghai, Guangzhou, Shenzhen and Tianjin, among others. Additional cases are also being identified daily in an increasing number of other countries. On 30 January 2020, the World Health Organisation (WHO) declared the outbreak as a Public Health Emergency of International Concern (PHEIC) and has proposed certain Temporary Recommendations to reduce exposure to and transmission of the virus. We highlight below some potential contractual issues for international shipping and trade.

Coronavirus: Legal issues and impact on International Trade & Transportation

News / Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV): Legal issues and Impact on International Trade & Transportation

04-02-2020 / Maritime

The novel coronavirus was first reported in late December 2019. The outbreak of the virus originated from the inland city of Wuhan, the capital of the Hubei province, PRC, but has quickly spread to coastal cities within China such as Shanghai, Guangzhou, Shenzhen and Tianjin, among others. Additional cases are also being identified daily in an increasing number of other countries. On 30 January 2020, the World Health Organisation (WHO) declared the outbreak as a Public Health Emergency of International Concern (PHEIC) and has proposed certain Temporary Recommendations to reduce exposure to and transmission of the virus. We highlight below some potential contractual issues for international shipping and trade.

Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV): Legal issues and Impact on International Trade & Transportation

News / Attacks on Oil Facilities in Saudi Arabia – Potential Legal Issues

16-09-2019 / Energy & Infrastructure

On 14 September 2019 a large-scale drone attack targeted some of Saudi Arabia's principal oil production and processing facilities. In particular, the attack targeted the Khurais oil field and the Abqaiq processing facility, which is the world’s largest.

Attacks on Oil Facilities in Saudi Arabia – Potential Legal Issues

News / Ince name Beijing Chief Wai Yue Loh as new Head of its Singapore office’s China Practice

05-08-2019 /

Ince Singapore is pleased to announce that Partner and Beijing Chief Wai Yue Loh has been named the new Head of the Singapore office’s China Practice, further strengthening the business offering to clients across Asia. The litigator and specialist in shipping, commodities and energy disputes, who is qualified to practise law in Singapore, England & Wales and Hong Kong, will maintain his role leading the Beijing office, as well as his Partnership in Ince’s Hong Kong practice.

Ince name Beijing Chief Wai Yue Loh as new Head of its Singapore office’s China Practice

News / Ince Asia Team successfully held the third mock arbitration in China on 11 July in Guangzhou, with a full-house.

17-07-2019 /

The mock arbitration simulated an actual hearing of a Hong Kong international arbitration involving an international trade dispute that has shipping, trade, insurance and contract aspects, in line with one of the important roles that Hong Kong is playing under China’s Greater Bay Area initiative, that is, the role of being the legal services centre and dispute resolution centre of the world.

Ince Asia Team successfully held the third mock arbitration in China on 11 July in Guangzhou, with a full-house.

News / Hong Kong Court upholds jurisdiction clause in bill of lading with serious consequences for NVOCC

07-06-2019 / Maritime

Li Lian International Ltd v Herport Hong Kong Ltd (MOL Comfort) 2019 HKCFI 826 2019 HKEC 964nbspThis decision of the Hong Kong Court illustrates one of the potential risks associated with acting as a Non Vessel Owning Common Carrier

Hong Kong Court upholds jurisdiction clause in bill of lading  with serious consequences for NVOCC

News / Hong Kong Court upholds jurisdiction clause in bill of lading – with serious consequences for NVOCC

07-06-2019 / Maritime

Li Lian International Ltd v. Herport Hong Kong Ltd (MOL Comfort) [2019] HKCFI 826 [2019] HKEC 964 This decision of the Hong Kong Court illustrates one of the potential risks associated with acting as a Non Vessel Owning Common Carrier.

Hong Kong Court upholds jurisdiction clause in bill of lading – with serious consequences for NVOCC

News / Force Majeure & alternative modes of performance

01-10-2018 / Maritime

Classic Maritime Inc. v Limbungan Makmur SDN BHD [2018] EWHC 2389 (Comm) Under a COA between Classic Maritime Inc. (“Owners”) and Limbungan Makmur SND BHD (“Charterers”), the Charterers agreed to supply and load 59 shipments of iron ore pellets from Brazil to Malaysia between 2009 and 2017. The cargo was to be supplied from one of two ports: (i) Ponta Ubu with Samarco Mineracao SA (“Samarco”) as the shipper or (ii) Tubarao with Vale SA (“Vale”) as the shipper. Charterers did not have long term legally binding contracts with either shipper. All previous shipments under the COA had been from Ponta Ubu with Samarco as the shipper.

Force Majeure & alternative modes of performance

News / 6th Ince Beijing Shipping Trade Seminar - Mock Arbitration 22 May 2018

26-04-2018 / Commodities & Trade, Maritime

Ince Co Beijing Office will host its 6th Shipping Trade Seminar Mock Arbitration Event on Tuesday, 22 May, 2018

6th  Ince Beijing Shipping  Trade Seminar - Mock Arbitration  22 May 2018

News / Shipping E-Brief July 2016

08-07-2016 / Maritime

The Shipping E-Brief is a quarterly publication providing you with key information on legal decisions and developments in shipping and related business areas.

Shipping E-Brief July 2016

News / Court of Appeal upholds anti-suit injunction to deny right of direct action against Club

07-07-2016 / Maritime

Ship-owners' Mutual Protection and Indemnity Association (Luxembourg) v. Containerships Denizcilik Nakliyat Ve Ticaret AS (Yusuf Cepnioglu) [2016] EWCA Civ 316 The Court of Appeal has upheld an anti-suit injunction preventing cargo interests from pursuing a direct right of action against a P&I Club (“the Club”). In dismissing the appeal, the Court reinforced its commitment to protecting the Club’s contractual right to London arbitration, in priority to a direct right conferred by Turkish law.

Court of Appeal upholds anti-suit injunction to deny right of direct action against Club

News / Shipping E-Brief April 2016

29-04-2016 / Maritime

The Shipping E-Brief is a quarterly publication providing you with key information on legal decisions and developments in shipping and related business areas.

Shipping E-Brief April 2016

News / Court refuses to grant anti-suit injunction due to significant delay

28-04-2016 / Maritime

Essar Shipping Ltd v. Bank of China Ltd (Kishore) [2015] EWHC 3266 (Comm) This case is an unusual instance of the English courts refusing to grant an anti-suit injunction in the face of a clear, valid agreement in favour of London arbitration. This is in contrast with a number of other recent decisions, in which the English courts have readily granted anti-suit injunctions, some against entities pursuing Chinese proceedings.

Court refuses to grant anti-suit injunction due to significant delay

News / Tianjin six months on - Direct insurance issues

19-01-2016 / Insurance

Market estimates of the insured losses flowing from the Tianjin Explosion vary significantly, ranging from US$2 billion to US$3.5 billion and there is little consistency as to the basis upon which the estimates are calculated. It is certain, however, that Tianjin will be a very significant loss event. 

Tianjin six months on - Direct insurance issues

News / Tianjin – how we can help you

19-01-2016 / Insurance

Whether you are facing payment demands from your cedant, seeking to recover payments already deducted, or suffering reduced or minimal claims oversight, our lawyers on the ground in Beijing supported by our international insurance and reinsurance team can help you with any issues arising out of this major incident.

Tianjin – how we can help you

News / Keeping your promise: Court upholds anti-suit injunction (again)

02-11-2015 / Maritime

Southport Success SA v. Tsingshan Holding Group Co Ltd (Anna Bo) [2015] EWHC 1974 (Comm). In the latest decision on the “hot topic” of anti-suit injunctions, the Commercial Court has taken the opportunity to provide further helpful clarification of the underlying basis of its powers to grant interim relief in the form of anti-suit injunctions, and discussed the scope of potential limitations to the Court’s powers to restrain parties from pursuing foreign proceedings.

Keeping your promise: Court upholds anti-suit injunction (again)

News / No excuses! Court protects Buyers’ right to rely on refund guarantees

25-06-2015 / Maritime

Spliethoff’s Bevrachtingskantoor BV v. Bank of China [2015] EWHC 999 (Comm) A Dutch ship operating company, SBV, brought claims against a Chinese bank, BOC, for payment under two refund guarantees governed by English law. BOC withheld payment in reliance upon orders made by a Chinese court preventing BOC from making payment under the guarantees. In this decision, the English Court ordered BOC to make payment to SBV, giving effect to the contractual bargain between SBV and BOC. This important decision brings the relationship between English and foreign courts into focus once again.

No excuses! Court protects Buyers’ right to rely on refund guarantees

News / Anti-suit injunction granted in respect of warehouse certificate disputes subject to exclusive jurisdiction of English courts

26-05-2015 / Commodities & Trade

Impala Warehousing and Logistics (Shanghai) Co Ltd v. Wanxiang Resources (Singapore) PTE Ltd [2015] EWHC 811 (Comm) In June 2014, what subsequently became referred to as the “Qingdao Metals Fraud” came to light and was widely reported in the press. The alleged fraud concerned a Chinese metal trading company and its affiliates, which were reported to have been using the same stockpiles of metal commodities stored at the bonded warehouses in Qingdao Port for the purpose of collateralising multiple loans. This has given rise to litigation in multiple jurisdictions, some of which has found its way to the English courts.

Anti-suit injunction granted in respect of warehouse certificate disputes subject to exclusive jurisdiction of English courts

News / Repo transactions - implications for traders and financing banks when the goods cannot be delivered

26-05-2015 / Commodities & Trade

Mercuria Energy Trading Pte Ltd and another v. Citibank NA & another [2015] EWHC 1481 (Comm) The Commercial Court has recently issued judgment in the first round of litigation between commodities trader Mercuria and Citigroup, following the reported fraudulent use of the same stockpiles of metal commodities stored at Qingdao Port, China as collateral for multiple loans. This is the second judgment from the English courts arising out of the widely reported alleged fraud, and comes after the decision in Impala v. Wanxiang, in which a warehouse operator successfully obtained an anti-suit injunction preventing a commodities trader from continuing proceedings against it in China.

Repo transactions - implications for traders and financing banks when the goods cannot be delivered

News / Shipping E-Brief Spring 2015

01-05-2015 / Maritime

The Shipping E-brief is a quarterly publication providing you with key information on legal decisions and developments in shipping and related business areasnbspSign up here to receive the E-Brief by email each quarterOur Spring edition of the Shipping E-Brief is full of articles dealing with topical shipping issues Download the E-Brief Spring (PDF)You can also subscribe to our podcasts with iTunes

Shipping E-Brief Spring 2015

News / Direct rights of action - P&I Club succeeds in upholding anti-suit injunction

24-03-2015 / Maritime

Shipowners' Mutual Protection And Indemnity Association (Luxembourg) v. Containerships Denizcilik Nakliyat Ve Ticaret AS (Yusuf Cepnioglu) [2015] EWHC 258 (Comm) The English Court has upheld an anti-suit injunction preventing a party from pursuing direct rights of action against a P&I Club (“the Club”) in Turkey. The Court protected the Club’s contractual right to English arbitration in priority to a direct right conferred by Turkish law. This important decision brings the relationship between English and foreign courts into focus again, and raises questions regarding the effect of European regulations on English conflict of laws principles.

Direct rights of action - P&I Club succeeds in upholding anti-suit injunction

News / Delayed delivery: the right to cancel shipbuilding contracts

29-01-2015 / Maritime

Zhoushan Jinhaiwan Shipyard v. Golden Exquisite Inc. [2014] EWHC 4050 (Comm) A recent decision in the Commercial Court offers helpful guidance to both shipyards and buyers facing and considering possible cancellations of shipbuilding contracts due to delayed delivery.

Delayed delivery: the right to cancel shipbuilding contracts

News / Shipping E-Brief Winter 2015

29-01-2015 / Maritime

The Shipping E-brief is a quarterly publication providing you with key information on legal decisions and developments in shipping and related business areasnbspSign up here to receive the E-Brief by email each quarterOur Winter edition of the Shipping E-Brief is full of articles dealing with topical shipping issues Download the PDF versionYou can also subscribe to our podcasts with iTunes

Shipping E-Brief Winter 2015

News / Commercial Court rules on buyers rights to extensions of time under GAFTA 49

06-11-2014 / Commodities & Trade

Nidera BV v. Venus International Free Zone for Trading and Marine Services SAE (Pioneer Wave) [2014] EWHC 2013 (Comm) This recent decision from the Commercial Court provides useful guidance on the construction of Clause 8 of the popular GAFTA 49 form; in particular, on the nature and scope of a buyer’s right to extend the delivery period under that clause.

Commercial Court rules on buyers rights to extensions of time under GAFTA 49

News / Recent Events in Qingdao Port Highlight Risks in Commodity TradingFinancing in China

03-09-2014 / Commodities & Trade

In early June this year, a Chinese metal trading company and its affiliates were reported to have been using the same stockpiles of metal commodities stored at Dagang, Qingdao Port, China for the purpose of collateralising multiple loans. This was discovered amidst an apparently unrelated investigation by the Government into the activities of a government official in Qinghai Province, and a trail led the investigators to this Chinese metal trading company whose boss was a close ally of this government official. The allegations are still being investigated and the severity of its impact remains uncertain at this stage; it is however believed that the losses/exposure that may be caused to the banks and commodity traders involved could potentially amount to billions of US Dollars.

Recent Events in Qingdao Port Highlight Risks in Commodity TradingFinancing in China

News / Owners’ liens on cargo for unpaid freight in China

08-04-2014 / Maritime

A shipowner client comes to us with a problem. The charterer has defaulted on freight payments and/or will not pay freight due and payable under the charterparty. The charterer has also gone incommunicado. The vessel is en route to discharge its cargo in China. The bill of lading is held by the buyer/cargo receiver to whom the charterer has sold the cargo. The shipowner wants to know whether he can exercise a lien on the cargo against the lawful holder of the bill of lading until he has been paid the freight due to him from the charterer.

Owners’ liens on cargo for unpaid freight in China

News / Limited scope for challenging English maritime arbitration awards

21-01-2014 / Maritime

Primera Maritime (Hellas) Ltd and others v. Jiangsu Heavy Industry Co. Ltd [2013] EWHC 3066 (Comm) In this case, the Commercial Court reminded unsuccessful arbitration parties that appeals under s.68 Arbitration Act 1996 are only for extreme cases where the Tribunal has gone so wrong in its conduct of the arbitration that justice calls out for it to be corrected. The Court will not assist an appellant if the Tribunal reaches a conclusion on facts that the appellant does not like.

Limited scope for challenging English maritime arbitration awards