Spiliada Maritime Corp v Cansulex Ltd  AC 460 is a leading case in English law on the issue of forum non conveniens. The term "forum non conveniens" refers to the discretion of a court to refuse to hear a case if it is not the most appropriate or convenient forum to do so.
In this case, Spiliada Maritime Corp, a Greek shipping company, had a dispute with Cansulex Ltd, a Canadian shipping company, over a contract for the sale of a ship. Spiliada commenced proceedings in England, and Cansulex argued that the English court was not the appropriate forum to hear the case, and that it should be heard in Canada instead.
The court considered various factors, including the jurisdiction where the contract was made, where the ship was located, where the witnesses were located, and where the majority of the evidence was located. The court ultimately concluded that Canada was the more appropriate forum to hear the case, and therefore stayed the English proceedings.
The decision in Spiliada Maritime Corp v Cansulex Ltd established a two-stage test for determining whether a court should decline jurisdiction on the basis of forum non conveniens. The first stage involves identifying whether there is another forum that is clearly more appropriate to hear the case. If there is, then the second stage involves considering whether there are any strong reasons why the case should be heard in the current forum instead.
Overall, the case illustrates the importance of considering all relevant factors when determining the most appropriate forum for a legal dispute, and the discretion of a court to decline jurisdiction on the basis of forum non conveniens.
You can learn more about this topic with our Conflict of Laws notes.