Paul TAston
Senior Partner
Currently a senior equity partner in HFW's Singapore office, Paul has worked in the firm's London, Shanghai, Hong Kong and Singapore (which he founded in 1991) offices. In total, he has practiced in Singapore for more than 20 years.
He has substantial experience of acting for parties in international arbitration and mediation in several jurisdictions. Where appropriate he acts as an advocate.

Paul advises on commercial transactions and projects in the maritime, offshore and commodity sectors (mainly Oil and Gas). He specialises in all aspects of shipping, transport and insurance, down and midstream oil and gas transactions, ship building and repair disputes, advising shipyards and buyers on contracts for the construction of various offshore structures, (rigs/FPSO) as well as their utilization offshore. 

In 2017, Paul was invited by the Singapore Academy of Law, under the Chairmanship of the Honourable Steven Chong Lord Justice of Appeal, to sit on a working committee to establish a scheme for accreditation of Singapore Advocates in the marine and shipping sector.

He has expertise in relation to long and short-term contracts for the supply, transportation, sale and purchase, and storage of petroleum products and LNG. These include:
  • Considerable experience as counsel of conducting substantial arbitrations in London, Paris, Singapore, Hong Kong, Houston, PRC, Thailand and Indonesia.
  • Substantial experience in offshore projects (EPC, EPCIC) for the building, commissioning and utilization of an array of offshore structures including jack up and semi submersible rigs, float over barges, pipe laying vessels, FPSO, FSU and FSO (gas and oil), LNG, FSRU and FLNG to include arbitrations concerning building and construction disputes.  
  • Resource development projects to include gas logistical supply base, installation of FSU in offshore blocks, subsea pipe line disputes and disputes concerning oil field platforms, risers and clamps.
  • To include sub sea installation and commissioning, platforms and associated equipment.
  • Significant experience of conversion of vessels.
  • Ship repair experience includes, capzing of passenger ferry in floating dock, explosion of LPG  vessel, fire and total losses in several shipyards.  Numerous ship repair and conversion disputes.
  • Drafting bespoke new building contracts for rigs and off shore structure and negotiating disputes and cancellation of same.
  • Technical disputes relating to stern tube bearing arrangements, usual engine failures and metallurgical disputes and also working closely with numerous experts.
  • Oil and gas contamination disputes and numerous sale and purchase disputes of petroleum and other commodities (ion ore/coal).
  • Major non marine insurance disputes concerned hotel property damage and loss of attractions disputes arising to of Asian Tsunami Dec 2004, acting for major hotel chains, product recall liability for manufacturer of foodstuffs, DOI insurances disputes and BI and CAR disputes.
  • Handled major arbitration in shipbuilding disputes, repair disputes, sale of goods and charter party matters.  Conducts own advocacy where appropriate, to include emergency arbitrations, preliminary issues and full hearing.
Phone: +65 6411 5338
Country of Residence: Singapore
Nationality: British
  • OIL & GAS
    1994-1997, Board Member (custodial) FEOP (Far East Oil Pricing Index)
    2013, Associate Mediator, Singapore Mediation Centre
    2014, Fellow of the CIArb (Diploma in International Arbitration)
    2016, Ambassador to Mission to Seafarers Singapore
    2017, Ambassador to WISTA
    2014-2018, Board Member SCMA
    1977, Sheffield University, LLB (Hons) Upper Second Class
    Chambers Global Guide 2018

    Legal 500 Asia-Pacific Guide 2018, International Arbitration