The launch of the Singapore Ship Sale Form (SSF) by the Singapore Maritime Foundation (SMF) is in response to the Singapore and Asian maritime community’s call for an alternative form that would cater to their needs, in view of increasing maritime activities and maritime arbitration cases in Asia.

The last three decades have been a remarkable period of growth for Asia shipping. Behind much of this growth are a number of economies in East Asia, notably, Singapore, Japan, China, Hong Kong and South Korea. Today, Asia is a dominant force in world shipping and Asian ship owners control about 50% of the world's fleet.

Spurred by the vigorous growth of the Chinese and Indian economies, Asia’s economic and commercial landscape is moving away from being the world’s supplier of goods and services to a significant consumer of goods and services. With the centre of gravity of global shipping fast gravitating to Asia, ship sales and purchases will increase exponentially. Maritime arbitration and disputes cases in the region will also increase.

These lend credence to the need to have these disputes arbitrated in Asia itself. The new form for ship sale and purchase, which was conceptualised under the framework of updated shipping regulations and recent banking practices, seeks to serve as a viable alternative option next to other widely used forms.