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Arbitration: Our experience

  • Acted for Czech Investment Fund in dispute with an English merchant bank over banking covenants concerning a shareholding in the major department store in Prague. Arbitration in London under LCIA Rules. Arbitrator: Gary Born.
  • Acted for English / Italian joint venture company in dispute with global vehicle manufacturer. Claims for unpaid invoices and injunctions to restrain interference with contractual rights. Acted for same JV company in resisting claim that contract lawfully terminated for overcharging and dishonesty. Counterclaim for lost profit for wrongful termination.  Both arbitrations were consolidated. Arbitration in London under ICC Rules. Arbitrators: L Yves Fortier CC QC, Paul Hannon and Anthony Boswood QC. Evidential hearing March 2007 on liability involving c30 witnesses and 4 experts. Quantum hearing involving 4 witnesses and 3 experts October 2007. The clients were successful at both stages recovering £45+m.  Specific activity included resisting application for a summary determination and several disclosure applications.
  • Acted for a US corporation in its multi-billion dollar claim against a government body in Kazakhstan for breach of contract and fraud in respect of a major metro and rail infrastructure project in Kazakhstan.  The claim was for £2.5 billion, and was brought by way of an ICC arbitration in London under Kazakh law.  The case had complex facts and documentation, and involved difficult issues of causation and loss under Kazakh law.
  • Advised pharmaceutical company in dispute with American manufacturer of medical products on alleged failure to properly market products.
  • Acted for logistics company in claim for freight charges in ICC arbitration. Tribunal: Hilary Heilbron QC.
  • Acted in applications to Commercial Court in London under ss67/68 Arbitration Act 1996 arising from award made in international arbitration. Case reported as PGN v CNH [2009] EWHC 977 (Comm).
  • Acted for listed UK plc in dispute with US wine company for termination of distribution and storage contract. Tribunal: Andrew Foyle, William Rowley QC and Hilary Heilbron QC.
  • Acted as sole arbitrator in English / Scottish dispute concerning a contract for a film set.
  • Acted to register and enforce a Bulgarian award in the UK.
  • Acted for Dutch metals company in claim for non-delivery and loss due to market movements.
  • Acted for a Channel Islands company on claims of business interruption caused by foul water ingress.
  • Acted on commission claims arising from introductions of Chinese oil and gas companies to opportunities in Saudi Arabia.
  • Acting for German wind farm technology company in dispute with Indian joint venture partner.
  • Acting for Serbian distributor of medical products in dispute with Anglo-German principal

Reported Cases

Commercial arbitration cases are not reported: the privacy and confidentiality of arbitration is one if its perceived advantages.  It is when the cases come before the Courts, in aid of arbitration or to enforce it, that sometimes they become public (arbitration cases are often in private and hence not reported).

PGN Logistics Ltd v CNH Global NV
The ability of the Court to interfere in a case of serious irregularity (in this case by the arbitrators exceeding their jurisdiction by amending the award to correct a failure to award interest) was to be exercised only if the irregularity caused substantial injustice.  An award of interest was so commonplace that good reason had to be shown as to why interest was not awarded and hence there was no injustice by reaching the correct objective result.

Enercon GmbH v Enercon India Limited [2012]
Although it appeared to be a case where the Court should exercise its powers to appoint an arbitrator out of international comity the courts of India would be afforded a short period to complete hearing a matter and the English proceedings would be stayed for a short period to enable that to occur.

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