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Headline International Arbitration Legal News from LexisNexis®
ICSID Refuses To Reconsider Decision Ordering Immediate $25M Payment
WASHINGTON, D.C. - Tribunal members for the International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) on Nov. 14 released a decision refusing to reconsider a recent order in which a Bangladesh oil and gas company was ordered to immediately pay a $25,312,747 arbitration award, plus 139,988,337 Bangladesh Taka and interest (Niko Resources [Bangladesh] Ltd. v. People's Republic of Bangladesh, et al., Nos. ARB/10/11 and ARB/10/18, ICSID).
ITLOS Will Hear Panama's Case Against Italy For Vessel Seizure
HAMBURG, Germany - The International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea (ITLOS) on Nov. 4 found that it has jurisdiction over a case commenced by Panama against Italy in relation to the alleged unlawful detention of a vessel, finding that all of Panama's claims are admissible (The MV "Norstar" Case [Panama v. Italy], No. 25, ITLOS).
ICSID Releases Award, Finds It Lacks Jurisdiction Over CAFTA Claims
WASHINGTON, D.C. - The International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) on Oct. 26 released an interim award on jurisdiction in an arbitration commenced by investors, who allege that the Republic of Costa Rica expropriated their investment in luxury beachfront property, finding that it lacks jurisdiction to hear claims related to many of the allegedly affected lots of land (Spence International Investments et al. v. Republic of Costa Rica, No. UNCT/13/2, ICSID).
ICSID Orders Renco And Peru To Pay Costs Of Treaty Arbitration
PARIS - After issuing a recent award in which it found that Renco Group Inc. failed to show that the Republic of Peru had agreed to arbitrate disputes under a treaty, a tribunal for the International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) on Nov. 11 released an award in which it ordered the parties to pay their owns costs of the case and half of ICSID's expenses (The Renco Group, Inc. v. Republic of Peru, No. [UNCT/13/1], ICSID).
2nd Circuit Refuses To Rehear Appeal Of Order Confirming $400M Award
NEW YORK - The Second Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Nov. 1 refused to reconsider its previous decision to affirm a district court's order confirming a $400 million arbitral award issued in favor of a Mexican corporation in a dispute over underlying contracts for the construction of offshore platforms (Corporacion Mexicana De Mantenimiento Intergral, S. De R.L. De C.V. v. Pemex-Exploracion Y, No. 13-4022, 2nd Cir.).
2nd Circuit Affirms Confirmation Of ICC Award For ConocoPhillips
NEW YORK - The Second Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Nov. 7 affirmed a district court's decision to deny a petition to vacate an award filed by two subsidiaries of a Venezuela oil company and granting a cross-petition to confirm the award filed by ConocoPhillips Co., finding that the appellants failed to present any evidence that the award violated public policy (PDV Sweeny, Inc., et al. v. ConocoPhillips Co., et al., No. 16-170, 2nd Cir.).
9th Circuit Affirms Confirmation Of Award For Breach Of Breeding Contracts
LOS ANGELES - After finding that enforcement of an arbitral award issued in Ireland was appropriate, the Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Nov. 14 affirmed a district court's confirmation of an award in relation to a breach of contracts for horse breeding (Linley Investments, et al. v. Jerry Jamgotchian, No. 14-56437, 9th Cir.; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 20431).
Justice Enforces $74M Award Issued In Pipeline Dispute For ConocoPhillips
LONDON - An England and Wales justice on Nov. 10 granted an application filed by two gas companies to enforce a $74 million arbitration award that was issued in their favor by a tribunal in Singapore, rejecting an Indonesian entity's application to set aside the award under English arbitration law (PT Transportasi Gas Indonesia V. ConocoPhillips [Grissik] Ltd PetroChina International Jabung Ltd., No.  EWHC 2834 [Comm], England and Wales High, Comm.).
Justice Finds Vessel Owner Was Not Entitled To Damages, Affirms Award
LONDON - An English justice on Nov. 17 rejected an appeal of an award filed by the purchaser of a vessel that suffered engine failure, refusing to set aside a decision that the builder of the ship was liable only to make repairs or to pay for the cost of replacement or repair of physical damage (Star Polaris LLC v. HHIC-PHIL Inc., No.  EWHC 2941 [Comm], England and Wales High, Comm.).
Judge Confirms $3.2M Award, Finds Company Cannot Withhold Taxes
NEW YORK - A New York federal judge on Nov. 3 granted an English company's petition to confirm a $3.2 million arbitral award plus interest issued in its favor in relation to a patent license agreement dispute, finding that the respondent was not entitled to deduct amounts from the award to satisfy Taiwanese tax laws (Mondis Technology Ltd. v. Wistron Corporation, No. 15-CV-02340, S.D. N.Y.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 152785).
Czech Ministry Seeks High Court Review Of D.C. Circuit Ruling Enforcing Award
WASHINGTON, D.C. - The Czech Republic Ministry of Health on Nov. 4 filed a petition for writ of certiorari in the U.S. Supreme Court, seeking review of an appeals court ruling that reversed a decision to grant a petition to confirm a $325 million arbitral award (The Czech Republic-Ministry of Health v. Diag Human S.E., No. 16-620, U.S. Sup.; 2016 U.S. S. Ct. Briefs LEXIS 4060).
Judge Dismisses Case Filed Over Iraqi Facility Project For Lack Of Standing
NEW YORK - A New York federal judge on Nov. 14 found that the owner of an Iraqi company that was contracted to build a vehicle maintenance facility in Iraq failed to show that he had standing to sue the International Centre for Dispute Resolution (ICDR) and a company in relation to an arbitral award dismissing his claims (Wameedh Al Azzawi v. International Centre for Dispute Resolution, et al., No. 16-548, S.D. N.Y.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 157712).
ICSID To Hold Merits Hearing In Treaty Dispute Filed Against Estonia
WASHINGTON, D.C. - A tribunal for the International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) on Nov. 4 said a hearing on jurisdiction and the merits in an international treaty arbitration brought by investors against the Republic of Estonia will begin next week (United Utilities (Tallinn) B.V., et al. v. Republic of Estonia, No. ARB/14/24, ICSID).
Panel: It Is Up To Arbitrators To Decide If Reinsurance Row Is Arbitrable
PHILADELPHIA - A Third Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel on Oct. 25 vacated a lower court ruling that a reinsurance arbitration clause was unenforceable (S. Jersey Sanitation Company, Inc. v. Applied Underwriters Captive Risk Assurance Company, Inc., No. 14-4010, 3rd Cir.; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 19245).
The Arbitrability Of State Disputes Under Brazilian Law
By Gustavo Fernandes de Andrade and Allison M. Stowell The 2015 Amendments to Brazil's Arbitration Law definitively settled a question that had long been percolating: whether the Brazilian state and state entities could enter into enforceable arbitration agreements. The answer, a resounding yes, is not a change in direction, but rather reflects the organic development of arbitration with state entities alongside Brazil's explosive growth of commercial arbitration over the past twenty years. The growth of both private and state arbitration is rooted in Brazil's Arbitration Law, passed in 1996. That law begins, "people capable of entering into contracts may use arbitration to resolve conflicts regarding disposable patrimonial rights."1 Disposable patrimonial rights are rights that can be alienated or assigned, and have an economic or pecuniary nature-in essence, they can be transferred to third parties and reduced to monetary amounts.
Romanian Agency Reverses $13.7M Tax Assessment, Gabriel Resources Reports
WASHINGTON, D.C. - A Canadian resource company on Sept. 27 said the Romanian National Agency for Fiscal Administration (ANAF) has reversed a tax assessment in which it sought $13.7 million in value added tax and penalties and announced updates in a related arbitration currently pending before the International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) (Gabriel Resources Ltd. and Gabriel Resources [Jersey] v. Romania [ICSID Case No. ARB/15/31]).
Judge Rules In Favor Of Turkish Investor, Denies Judgment For Kyrgyz
NEW YORK - After finding that an international tribunal has jurisdiction over an investment dispute related to a hotel and that the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York was the appropriate venue for enforcement proceedings, a New York federal judge on Oct. 3 granted judgment for a Turkish investor, finding that a $11,528,563 award, including costs and interest, should be confirmed (Sistem Muhendislik Insaat Ve Ticaret, A.S. v. The Kyrgyz Republic, No. 12-CV-4502, S.D. N.Y.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 136905).
ICSID Orders Tanzanian Bank To Pay $148 Million Under Purchase Agreement
WASHINGTON, D.C. - A tribunal for the International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) on Oct. 19 released its decision in a dispute over loans, ordering that a Tanzanian bank pay a U.K. bank $148.4 million under a power purchase agreement (Standard Chartered Bank v. United Republic of Tanzania, No. ARB/10/12, ICSID).
ICSID Panel Rejects Venezuela's Attempt To Disqualify Arbitrator
WASHINGTON, D.C. - Two members of a tribunal for the International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) on Oct. 3 released their decision to reject a third attempt by the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela to disqualify an arbitrator, finding nothing to support a finding that he manifestly lacks the ability to be impartial in hearing the case (Fabrica De Vidrios Los Andres C.A., et al. v. Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela, No. ARB/12/21, ICSID).
ICSID Refuses To Annul Award Dismissing Claims Against Greece
WASHINGTON, D.C. - After finding no contradictory reasoning in an award that dismissed a Greek company and bank's investment-related claims against the Hellenic Republic for lack of jurisdiction, an ad hoc committee for the International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) on Sept. 30 released a decision in which it refused to partially annul the award (Postova banka, a.s. and Istrokapital SE v. Hellenic Republic, No. ARB/13/8, ICSID).
ICSID Refuses To Supplement Award In Favor Of Turkmenistan
WASHINGTON, D.C. - A tribunal for the International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICISD) on Oct. 4 denied a Turkish construction company's request for supplementation of an award in which the tribunal dismissed its claims, finding that the tribunal did not omit findings related to certain assets (In The Arbitration Proceeding Between Ickale Insaat Limited Sirketi and Turkmenistan, No. ARB/10/24, ICSID).
Parties Submit Arguments Disputing Confirmation Of $20M Award In High Court
WASHINGTON, D.C. - The government of Belize and two Belizean entities recently filed briefs in the U.S. Supreme Court, submitting arguments in relation to the enforcement of a $20,106,100 arbitral award issued in favor of the companies (Government of Belize v. BCB Holdings Limited, et al., No. 16-136, U.S. Sup.).
Federal Judge Confirms $46 Million Award Issued Against Republic Of Niger
WASHINGTON, D.C. - After finding that it had jurisdiction over a petition to confirm a $46,128,410 arbitral award that was issued in favor of a biometric and electronic passport maker, a District of Columbia federal judge on Sept. 27 confirmed the award and entered judgment against the Republic of Niger (Africard Co. Ltd. v. Republic of Niger, No. 16-00196, D. D.C.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 132128).
Federal Judge Confirms $1.6M Award For Liberian Vessel Owner
SALT LAKE CITY - After a Utah-based charterer failed to respond to a Liberian vessel owner's petition to confirm a $1,669,221 arbitral award that was issued in London in its favor, a Utah federal judge on Sept. 27 found that the award must be confirmed under the Convention on the Recognition and Enforcement of Foreign Arbitral Awards (Asphalt Trader Ltd. v. Taryn Capital Energy LLC, No. 1:16-cv-00054, D. Utah; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 132647).
Judge Stays Case Pending Appeal Of Ruling Setting Aside Yukos Awards
WASHINGTON, D.C. - A District of Columbia federal judge on Sept. 30 granted a motion filed by investors in OAO Yukos Oil Co. to stay a petition to confirm, pending the outcome of their appeal of a Dutch court's order setting aside more than $50 billion in arbitral awards issued in their favor and against the Russian Federation (Hulley Enterprises Limited [Cyprus], et al., No. 1:14-cv-01996, D. D.C.).
Judge Rejected Argentina's Request To Set Aside $20M ICSID Award
WASHINGTON, D.C. - A District of Columbia federal judge on Sept. 30 found that an international tribunal was not biased and did not exceed its authority when it issued a $20,957,809 arbitral award in favor of a United Kingdom company, denying an application filed by the Republic of Argentina to set aside the award and granting the company's cross-petition to confirm (The Republic of Argentina v. AWG Group Ltd., No. 1:15-cv-01057, D. D.C.).
PCA Commission Will Hear Maritime Boundary Dispute Commenced By Timor-Leste
THE HAGUE, Netherlands - The Permanent Court of Arbitration (PCA) on Sept. 26 said a commission appointed in a maritime boundary conciliation between the Democratic Republic of Timor-Leste and the Commonwealth of Australia has issued a decision that it has the authority to continue with hearing the case (Arbitration under the Timor Sea Treaty [Timor-Leste v. Australia], No. 2013-16, PCA).
Judge Finds Clause Is Enforceable, Compels Arbitration In South Africa
CHARLESTON, W.Va. - After finding that claims that arose in a dispute over a distribution agreement related to an underlying arbitration clause, a West Virginia federal judge on Oct. 4 granted a motion to compel arbitration of the case in South Africa (Shilmann Rocbit LLC v. American Blasting Consumables Inc., No. 2:16-cv-06745, S.D. W.Va.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 137412).
Cocoa Trading House Appeals Order Vacating $2.6M Award To 2nd Circuit
NEW YORK - A New Jersey cocoa trading house on Oct. 14 filed a notice of appeal with the Second Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals, seeking to appeal an order granting a petition to vacate a $2,606,626 arbitral award issued against a cooperative made up of Peruvian farmers (Cooperativa Agraria Industrial Naranjillo Ltda. V. Transmar Commodity Group Ltd., No. 16-3356, S.D. N.Y.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 129969).
ICSID Arbitral Tribunals And The Direct Referrals To The Court Of Justice Of The European Union
By Anamaria Toma-Bianov I. Introduction Despite the fact that questions regarding the interpretation and application of the EU law arise frequently in arbitration proceedings, the Court of Justice of the European Union proved to be extremely selective in admitting a reference for preliminary ruling submitted by an arbitral tribunal. Two recent preliminary rulings of the Court of Justice in Merck Canada1 and Ascendi2 reopened the debates over the construal of the concept "court[s] or tribunal[s] of a Member State" within the wording of Article 267 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (TFEU).
Should The Uplift Element Of Third Party Funding Be Recoverable In International Arbitration: Whose Risk Is It Anyway?
By James Freeman and Louise Fisher I. The Underlying Arbitration In the recent case of Essar Oilfields Services Limited v. Norscot Management Pvt Limited  EWHC 2361 (Comm), 15 September 2016 (Essar v Norscot), the Commercial Court held that it is within an arbitral tribunal's discretion to award a claimant not only the advance received from a third-party funder to cover the costs of the arbitration, but also the uplift payable by the claimant to the third-party funder in the event of success.
ICSID Refuses To Award $422M In Damages Related To Newspaper Seizure
WASHINGTON, D.C. - A tribunal appointed in a second arbitration involving claims asserted against the Republic of Chile in relation to the military seizure of a newspaper in the 1970s released an award on Sept. 14 in which it found that the former owner of the newspaper was not entitled to more than $422 million in damages and dismissed all claims (Victor Pey Casado and Foundation Presidente Allende v. Republic of Chile, No. ARB/98/2, ICSID).
PCA Says It Will Hear Vessel Seizure Case Between Malta And Sao Tome
THE HAGUE, Netherlands - The Permanent Court of Arbitration (PCA) on Sept. 12 released its award in an arbitration commenced by Malta against the Republic of Sao Tome of in relation to the seizure of a vessel, finding that it has jurisdiction over the case and that Malta is entitled to some reparation for certain penalties imposed by Sao Tome that were not warranted (The Duzgit Integrity Arbitration [Malta v. Sao Tome and Principe], No. 2014-07, PCA).
10th Circuit Will Not Rehear Appeal Of Order Rejecting $1.6 Million Award
DENVER - The 10th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Aug. 31 refused to rehear a Chinese company's appeal of a decision to dismiss its petition to confirm an arbitral award that was issued in its favor, denying its petition for rehearing en banc (CEEG [Shanghai] Solar Science & Technology Co., Ltd. v. Lumos Solar LLC, No. 15-1256, 10th Cir.).
ICSID Partially Grants Kenya's Request For Discovery In BIT Arbitration
WASHINGTON, D.C. - A tribunal for the International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) on Sept. 12 released an order in an arbitration commenced by mining entities against the Republic of Kenya, partially granting Kenya's request for production of documents in the case (Cortec Mining Kenya Limited, Cortec [Pty] Limited and Stirling Capital Limited v. Republic of Kenya, ICSID Case No. ARB/15/29).
11th Circuit Finds Seaman's Claims Must Be Arbitrated Under Contract
MIAMI - After finding that a cruise line worker's employment contract envisioned performance abroad because he worked on international waters, the 11th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Aug. 29 affirmed a decision finding that an arbitration clause was enforceable under the Convention on the Recognition and Enforcement of Foreign Arbitral Awards (Francis D'Cruz v. NCL [Bahamas] Ltd., et al., No. 15-11766, 11th Cir.; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 15932).
ICSID Holds Hearing In Mining-Related Dispute Filed Against Romania
WASHINGTON, D.C. - The International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) on Sept. 12 announced that a hearing on provisional measures in an arbitration commenced by a Canadian resource company against Romania has been scheduled (Gabriel Resources Ltd. and Gabriel Resources (Jersey) v. Romania (ICSID Case No. ARB/15/31).
ITLOS Holds Hearing On Italy's Objections To Tribunal's Jurisdiction
HAMBURG, Germany - The International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea (ITLOS) on Sept. 12 announced that it held a hearing on Italy's objections to its jurisdiction over a case filed by Panama in relation to the allegedly unlawful detention of a vessel that supplied gasoil to yachts (The MV "Norstar" Case [Panama v. Italy], No. 25, ITLOS).
PCA Holds 1st Session In Maritime Boundary Dispute Commenced By Timor-Leste
THE HAGUE, Netherlands - The Permanent Court of Arbitration (PCA) on Aug. 31 said that it held the opening session in a maritime boundary conciliation between the Democratic Republic of Timor-Leste and the Commonwealth of Australia, during which the parties made submissions on the background of the dispute (Arbitration under the Timor Sea Treaty [Timor-Leste v. Australia], No. 2013-16, PCA).
Federal Judge Finds Removal Under Convention Is Not Proper, Remands
SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico - A federal judge in Puerto Rico on Sept. 19 granted a motion to remand claims for damages related to the alleged impairment of an exclusive distribution agreement, finding that a company validly pleaded a tortious interference claim and that the court could not exercise federal question jurisdiction under the Convention on the Recognition and Enforcement of Foreign Arbitral Awards (Air-Con Inc. v. Daikin Applied Latin America LLC, et al., No. 15-2683, D. Puerto Rico; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 128863).
ICDR Awards Firm Costs Incurred In Mexican Litigation Over Arbitrability
VANCOUVER, British Columbia - A Canadian mining firm on Aug. 31 announced in a news release that an arbitrator has issued an award in its favor, ordering a Texas entity and its Mexican affiliate to pay it $468,726.92 in costs and expenses that were incurred while challenging the arbitrability of a dispute in Mexico (Goldgroup Mining Inc. v. Dyna USA Inc., et al., No. No. 50-20-1400-0226, ICDR).
Swedish Court Rejects Appeal Of Tribunal's Award Ordering Costs
STOCKHOLM, Sweden - A Swedish appeals court on Aug. 25 rejected a company's appeal of an award ordering the company to pay the arbitration costs of a tribunal, litigation costs and interest (AFO Entreprenader AB in bankruptcy v. Infratek Sverige AB, No. 391-16, Svea App.).
Guyana Files Amicus Brief In High Court, Requests Ruling For Belize
WASHINGTON, D.C. - The government of Guyana on Aug. 26 filed an amicus curiae brief with the U.S. Supreme Court, arguing that confirmation of a $20,106,100 arbitral award issued in favor of two companies will have harmful consequences to the Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ) and to international comity (Government of Belize v. BCB Holdings Limited, et al., No. 16-136, U.S. Sup.; 2016 U.S. S. Ct. Briefs LEXIS 3163).