Philip Tan

Associate, Singapore



Philip Tan is a member of the Firm's International Arbitration practice in Asia. Based in Singapore, Philip has worked in the New York and Washington, DC offices of White & Case.

Philip acts as counsel in commercial and investment treaty arbitrations, with an emphasis on energy and construction disputes. He has represented clients in international arbitrations under various rules, including ICC, SIAC, LCIA, UNCITRAL, and ICSID. He also has experience in U.S. litigation and bankruptcy matters, and in conducting and coordinating complex internal investigations.

Philip Tan is recognized in Asia-Pacific Legal 500 2024 as "exceptional", a "first-class lawyer in his generation", and "a rising star with capability to understand complex legal and technical issues". He is also noted by clients as "very responsive and practical", with "deep knowledge" of Asian price reviews.

An active member of the international arbitration community, Philip was previously Vice-Chair (Asia), and is now Internal Communications Co-Chair, of the Young Institute for Transnational Arbitration (Young ITA). He also teaches a course on international energy disputes as Adjunct Teaching Mentor at SMU School of Law.

Philip is also regularly involved in pro bono work. He has assisted in an educational rights lawsuit against the State of New York, and the successful representation of an indigent defendant in a criminal appeal. He has also led training workshops conducted in association with BABSEACLE at East Yangon University, Myanmar, and coordinated projects for non-profit organisations based in Singapore and other countries.

At Columbia Law School, Philip was named James Kent Scholar, and served on the board of the Columbia Human Rights Law Review – Jailhouse Lawyer's Manual. He also served as a judicial intern at the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York.

Bars and Courts
New York
District of Columbia
England and Wales
Advocate and Solicitor, Singapore
Columbia Law School
London School of Economics and Political Science


Energy and Construction Arbitrations

  • Representing various European fund entities in multiple ICC arbitrations arising out of offshore wind farm projects in Asia.
  • Representing a leading Asian energy company in a multi-billion-dollar ICC arbitration arising out of the construction of one of the largest LNG projects in the world.
  • Representing a major Japanese contractor in ad hoc arbitrations seated in London and Singapore concerning alleged defects with two South-East Asian power projects.
  • Representing an Asian contractor in a Singapore-seated arbitration against its subcontractor concerning dredging and other mechanical works.
  • Representing various Asian energy companies in LNG price review arbitrations under the major institutional rules.

Investor-State Arbitrations

  • Representing the Republic of India before a London-seated Permanent Court of Arbitration tribunal in a US$ 1.4 billion arbitration under the India-Mauritius BIT.
  • Representing the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia in Samsung Engineering Co. Ltd. v. Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, an ICSID arbitration under the Saudi Arabia-South Korea BIT relating to the claimant's interests in a project for the construction of a power and desalination plant in Saudi Arabia.

Commercial Disputes

  • Representing an Asian private equity fund in multiple SIAC arbitrations on a dispute arising out of a business acquisition, and advising on related enforcement proceedings.
  • Representing a Chinese bank in an SIAC arbitration in relation to an insurance claim arising out of a mining project.
  • Representing an Asian government agency in U.S. litigation concerning fraud and misrepresentation claims.
Speaking Engagements

Speaker, Regional Alternative Dispute Resolution Symposium, Sri Lanka (2024)

Delegate and Reporter, 3rd Annual Young ITA Global Forum (2024)

Moderator, "Careers in Arbitration Edition: Would You Rather", AAA-ICDR Y&I, Singapore Convention Week (2023)

Moderator, "Texas: Session One: Key Procedural Issues in International Arbitration", 2nd Annual Young ITA Global Forum (2023)

#YoungITATalks: "Navigating the Impossible Trinity Through Procedural Innovation: An APAC perspective", Institute for Transnational Arbitration (2023)

#YoungITATalks: "An Unruly Horse or A Crown Jewel: Working Effectively with Expert Witnesses", Institute for Transnational Arbitration (2022)

#YoungITATalks: "Carpe diem in APAC Arbitration: Opportunities and Challenges Ahead", Institute for Transnational Arbitration (2021)

"Best practices for triggering price reviews and price review negotiations", Workshop on LNG Price Reviews in Asia, NUS Energy Studies Institute (2021)

"Arbitration for the Next Generation", Webinar, YSIAC (2021)


Co-author, Decarbonisation and gas/LNG Price Reviews, OGEL 4 (2022), in Energy Transition (with Matthew Secomb)

Co-author, Cooperation on the menu in China, Global Arbitration Review, October 2021 (with Clemency Wang)

Supreme Court of India ruling allows for foreign-seated arbitrations between Indian companies, May 2021 (Co-author with Dipen Sabharwal KC, Aditya Singh, Michael McArdle)

Chapter on Project Finance, "Managing 'Belt and Road' Business Disputes: A Case Study of Legal Problems and Solutions", Wolters Kluwer, April 2021 (Co-author with Matthew Secomb)

Old is the new "new" – the rule against penalties in Singapore, January 2021 (Co-author with Matthew Secomb, Julian Bailey)

Bifurcation of Claims when Set-Off Looms, Indian Journal of Arbitration Law, Volume 7, Issue 1, July 2018 (Co-author with Matthew Secomb)

No cross-contract set-off under Security of Payment Act, August 2017 (Co-author, with Matthew Secomb and Adam Wallin)

Third Party Funding For Arbitration: An Opportunity for Singapore to Lead the Way in Regulation, Asian Dispute Review, 2016 (Co-author, with Matthew Secomb and Thomas Wingfield)

Third Party Funding: a New Chapter in Hong Kong & Singapore, July 2016 (Co-author, with Matthew Secomb, Melody Chan and Thomas Wingfield)