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Jon Howes



Jon Howes

Jon Howes



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Jon has worked in Asia since 2000 and is recognised as one of the leading construction lawyers in the region; his clients value him for his wealth of experience and his style which is approachable, practical and hands on. Jon has recently relocated back to the UK, working from the firm’s Bristol office, and is still very much an active member of the APAC team, continuing to lead matters in Asia and regularly visits the region.

Regional experience

Jon earns the respect of market commentators as "a safe pair of hands for construction work who has been around in Singapore for a long time." A client adds: "He is very strong on construction contracts and disputes, and I am deeply impressed by his knowledge, understanding and ability to put this into a convincing argument."

Chambers & Partners, Construction, 2021

Full Profile

Jon focuses on large built environment, infrastructure and energy projects, and his client base includes many of the leading multinational companies in these sectors. He advises at all stages of the project life cycle from project inception through delivery and the resolution of claims. When supporting project delivery, Jon takes a practical and proactive approach which aims to manage risk and get commercial solutions to claims before positions become too entrenched. Jon has run some of the largest and high-profile arbitrations in Asia, as well as a large number of mediations, adjudications and expert determinations. Jon is a trained and practising arbitrator and mediator. Jon is a trained and practising arbitrator and mediator.

Jon is ranked in Chambers Asia Pacific 2022 as one of Singapore and the region’s leading construction lawyers. Clients praise him for being “street-wise and savvy”, and separate feedback includes: "He is very strong on construction contracts and disputes, and [I] am deeply impressed by his knowledge, understanding and ability to put this into a convincing argument."

Described as “one of the region’s finest construction lawyers”, a “formidable opponent” and “extremely strategic and commercially minded” by Who’s Who Legal (2019-2022), Jon has consistently been singled out  as a top ranked construction lawyer in major legal directories such as Legal 500, Chambers and Partners and Who's Who Legal.

He is an active member of the Lighthouse Club, a construction industry charity focussing on safety.


Oil & Gas

  • Acting for an oil major in an arbitration with an Indonesian contractor concerning the final account for works concerned with the construction of an on-shore production facility. This high-level case involved complex issues of contractual interpretation and measurement.
  • Acting for a Korean contractor in dispute with a Kuwaiti Corporation regarding a pipeline project in Kuwait resolved by an arbitration under LCIA rules. The case involved some highly technical issues concerning the construction and valuation of fuel transportation pipelines.
  • Acting for a Singaporean Contractor in dispute with an American Engineering firm concerning a pigging operation in Singapore referred to a SIAC arbitration. The case involved the cause of damage to a fuel storage facility and involved some highly technical analysis and expert evidence.


  • Acting for a Singaporean contractor in dispute with the Indonesian owner concerning construction of combined cycle power plant in Indonesia resolved by arbitration in Singapore under SIAC rules. The case involved a large number of disputed final account items and alleged defects. An application was made to an emergency arbitrator in relation to a call on an on demand bond.
  • Acting for a leading Singaporean contractor in international arbitration with an Indian subcontractor concerning delays and defects in combined cycle power plant constructed in Camau, Vietnam. The case involved some highly complex issues concerning defects in process system engineering.


  • Acting for a Joint Venture against a French Tunnel Machine supplier, resolved by arbitration under SIAC rules in Singapore. The case involved allegations concerning the fitness for purpose of a Tunnel Boring Machine designed to meet challenging ground conditions in Singapore. An application was made to the Singapore court in relation to an attempt to restrain a call on the supplier's bond.
  • Acting for a publicly listed Hong Kong contractor in international arbitration with the Thai joint venture partner concerning track work contract for the red line metro project in Bangkok. The case concerned the interpretation of a joint venture agreement between the two parties and involved an application to the Singapore High Court to remove an arbitrator.
  • Acting for a joint venture of large Japanese and French tunnelling contractors in international arbitration with the Government of Hong Kong following termination of contract related to deep tunnelling project under Hong Kong harbour. This very high value claim involved some very complex issues concerning control of water ingress during tunnelling.

Real Estate

  • Acting for a leading international US firm of consulting engineers in arbitration with a leading Korean conglomerate concerning foundation failure on large commercial building project in Singapore’s Central Business District. The case involved technical issues around the suitability of driven piles used on this project for mixed ground conditions and legal issues around the standard of care required from a consulting engineer.
  • Acting for three separate contractors (a leading Indian multinational, a leading Australian engineering company and a Greek owned steel contractor) in disputes with a US corporation resolved by arbitration concerning the construction of a landmark conferencing, entertainment and leisure facility in Singapore.
  • Acting for a leading UK firm of consulting engineers in arbitration with a Singaporean developer concerning allegations of failure to properly supervise construction after failure of bored pile foundations during construction of large high rise residential complex in Hong Kong. This was a "short pile" case in which it was discovered during construction that the piles had not been installed to the correct design depth. It involved a detailed forensic analysis of the piling records and legal issues concerning the standard of care required of a supervising engineer.
  • Acting for a Singapore contractor in a SIAC arbitration against a developer concerning a holiday resort in the Maldives. This final account dispute involved a number of issues, including technical issues concerning whether the natural wood used to construct the resortwas of the correct quality and had been correctly installed.

General Commercial

  • Acting for a Chinese Computer manufacturer in dispute with a Russian distributor resolved by SIAC arbitration. The case involved complex issues around debt structuring and contractual analysis of an exclusive dealership agreement.
  • Acting for an international fast moving consumer goods company in dispute with a supplier concerning the termination of a supply agreement in Indonesia. The case concerned the interplay of Indonesian law and the interpretation of a longstanding supply agreement.


  • Energy & Natural Resources

  • Infrastructure



  • Commercial Disputes

  • International Arbitration

  • Projects & Construction