Hon. Lord Chief Justice Michael Whitten QC

Chief Justice
, Supreme Court of Tonga
Profile / Bio: 

Michael Whitten QC is the current Lord Chief Justice of the Kingdom of Tonga. Prior to his Honour’s appointment in mid-2019, he was a member of the Victorian Bar and Chancery Chambers in Melbourne, Victoria. There, he practised for more than 20 years in commercial litigation, specialising in building, construction, infrastructure and energy disputes. Prior to that, his Honour’s legal career started in Brisbane in the Public Defender’s Office, then associate to the late Judge J.P. Kimmins, then as a law clerk at Blake Dawson Waldron, before being called to the Bar there in 1990. He has appeared in all jurisdictions throughout most of Australia and in domestic and international arbitrations.

He is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators, and was an accredited NMAS mediator. He was one of the founding members of MTECC, a virtual chambers dedicated to promoting its members in the construction law field, particularly, for international arbitration in the Asia-Pacific region, and was its Chair between 2016 and 2019. He was a member of the Australian Bar Association’s Arbitration committee until his current appointment in mid-2019. He is a co-author of the 4th, 5th and 6th editions of ‘Brooking on Building Contracts” and presented numerous CLE papers throughout his career at the Bar. His Honour’s work in Tonga has included consulting on the International Arbitration Bill following Tonga’s accession to the New York Convention, the 164th country to do so, on 12 June 2020.


Title Date Learning Materials Topic
Remarks of Michael Whitten QC 17 March 2021 Document Capacity Development, Finance, Industry and Trade, Knowledge Management, Private Sector