KUALA LUMPUR: A new Admiralty Court focusing on maritime disputes will commence today along with the New Civil Court (NCvC).
Chief Justice Tun Zaki Azmi said the centralisation of information on registration of claims and caveats at the Admiralty Court will greatly alleviate time and expense, compared with having to check on such matters at various registries throughout the country.
“The purpose of the court is to give parties the option, by consent, to have all claims dealt with expeditiously at one centralised point, in a court which routinely deals with such matters,” he said in his speech at its launch in the Jalan Duta court complex here yesterday.
Currently, there are 65 admiralty-related cases in the country with 35 cases being handled in Kuala Lumpur. Only 14 of the 35 are backlog cases. Zaki added that the target was for cases to be disposed of within nine months.
Among cases under the jurisdiction of the Admiralty Court would be those involving shipping, marine insurance, death or losses in marine activities, international trading and admiralty-related issues under Section 24(b) ofthe Courts of Judicature Act 1964.
High Court judge Justices P. Nallini and K. Anantham will deal with the matters arising in the new court, which will be supported by an admiralty registry comprising registrars, clerks and bailiffs.
Later, Zaki told a press conference that he hoped the court would benefit the business community and improve the country’s economy by attracting more people to Kuala Lumpur.
“Assuming a collision takes place between ships in the Straits of Malacca,” he said, “the parties can go to Indonesia, Singapore or Kuala Lumpur.
“The perception now is that Singapore is faster and more efficient in disposing of the case. These are the people we are trying to attract.”
Zaki added that the court was also testing a new system that would enable lawyers to handle case management matters via teleconference. The system, expected to help reduce time and costs, has been tested since a week ago.
Source: The Star