BOSTON — A Massachusetts federal judge on June 18 declined to adjourn an Austrian company’s action to enforce a roughly 142 million euro award against a Taiwanese company for a pharmaceuticals contract dispute despite a pending set-aside proceeding in Germany and said the Austrian company may seek limited jurisdictional discovery regarding whether the Taiwanese company is operated from Massachusetts.
WASHINGTON, D.C. — A Finnish businessman in a June 4 status report to a District of Columbia federal court said he intends to move for entry of default judgment against the Arab Republic of Egypt for an arbitral award worth more than $115 million for its 2000 expropriation of his investments in an iron ore mining concession after the clerk entered default against Egypt, which has not responded to service for more than six months.
WASHINGTON, D.C. — Swedish investors and their companies argue in a June 16 appellee brief to the District of Columbia Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals that the government of Romania cannot challenge a district court’s confirmation of an arbitral award worth more than $356 million and its imposition of sanctions for noncompliance with discovery because Romania previously admitted that its payment in Romanian currency was worth $96 million less than the court’s judgment.
WASHINGTON, D.C. — An International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) tribunal in a decision published June 17 declined a request by the Kingdom of Norway to bifurcate the quantum phase of an arbitration brought by Latvian investors in the snow crab industry, noting that the investors have already begun briefing the merits after their earlier request for bifurcation of jurisdictional issues was rejected.
CHICAGO — A Japanese businessman ordered by an arbitral panel to pay his former law firm $54 million for a bonus fee after four months of representation argues in a June 4 appellant brief to the Seventh Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals that it should vacate the award and order a new arbitration because the panel violated due process by prohibiting him from submitting a defense after he missed a hearing due to a medical emergency.
PHOENIX — An Arizona federal judge on June 16 ruled that an insurer is not obligated to pay defense costs a cotton grower’s association incurred during an international arbitration with an Indian company because the cotton grower did not file a claim regarding the arbitration until more than three years after it received a demand for arbitration, which the judge said constituted the commencement of the claim.
LONDON — The Judicial Committee of the Privy Council of the United Kingdom on June 14 set aside an order of the Mauritius Supreme Court that found that a $115.3 million arbitral award in favor of a shipping joint venture violated public policy, writing that the Supreme Court erred by failing to respect the finality of the award and basing its ruling on the alleged illegality of the parties’ underlying contract.
WASHINGTON, D.C. — A District of Columbia federal judge on June 14 entered default judgment confirming an arbitral award against the Republic of Guinea in favor of a Senegalese company for more than 7.4 million euros plus interest for nonpayment of a road repair contract after Guinea failed to appear.
LOS ANGELES — A California federal judge on June 11 remanded an attorney’s lawsuit against his former firm to state court after finding that the firm cannot not invoke federal jurisdiction under the New York Convention because the attorney’s state court complaint arises from the parties’ domestic partnership agreement, not the international arbitration settlement that sparked the parties’ dispute.
ALLENTOWN, Pa. — A Pennsylvania federal judge on June 9 granted a motion to stay litigation and compel arbitration of a suit brought by a company against one of its German shareholders for allegedly violating a noncompete clause, writing that the company’s choice to commence arbitration while the lawsuit was pending “reset the clock” on the German shareholder’s right to seek a stay of litigation.
WASHINGTON, D.C. — An International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) tribunal on June 3 rejected the bulk of a Canadian investor’s claims against the Republic of Costa Rica, including for alleged expropriation of its investment in an open-pit gold mine, writing that while Costa Rica’s legislative ban on mining was unfair, no damages could be awarded as the mining license at issue was appropriately annulled.
SAN FRANCISCO — A Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel on June 4 withdrew its opinion in which it ruled by majority that an Indian incense company as nonsignatory to an arbitration agreement can’t rely on doctrines of equitable estoppel to compel arbitration with a former partner and his company, denied a pending petition for rehearing of the case and said it will issue a new ruling soon.
LONDON — Two European investors in a Slovenian oil and gas field on May 27 announced that they have retained counsel to represent them in a planned arbitration in which they will seek more than 100 million euros in damages from the government of Slovenia for allegedly breaching investment treaties and impairing their investment by imposing environmental assessment requirements prior to low-volume hydraulic stimulation of existing oil wells.
CINCINNATI — Ford Motor Co. in a June 1 appellee brief to the Sixth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals says a Kuwaiti car dealer’s argument that the Motor Vehicle Franchise Contract Arbitration Fairness Act (the Fairness Act) applies to foreign dealers and should have precluded a district court from ordering it to arbitrate a dispute with Ford is moot and contends that the Fairness Act applies only domestically.
WASHINGTON, D.C. — A District of Columbia federal judge on June 1 denied Ukraine’s motion to stay execution of a more than $172 million judgment without requiring a bond to satisfy an arbitral award it was ordered to pay a Russian oil company, finding that Ukraine’s sovereign status and arguments that it is likely to succeed in a pending appeal of the award do not create “unusual circumstances” that would exempt it from the bond requirement.
WASHINGTON, D.C. — An International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) annulment committee on May 28 ordered a damages award against the Republic of Ecuador in favor of an oil exploration company reduced by $36 million, down to approximately $412 million, after it annulled two portions of the award that it found the original tribunal failed to support with stated reasoning.
WASHINGTON, D.C. — An International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) tribunal on May 17 stayed enforcement of nearly $30 million in damages and interest that was awarded against the Republic of Guatemala for lowering tariffs on electricity distribution in violation of an international investment treaty while its application to annul the award is pending.
WASHINGTON, D.C. — A group of an expropriated oil company’s shareholders urge the District of Columbia Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals in a May 24 appellant brief to issue a writ of mandamus lifting a district court’s stay of its action to confirm an award worth more than $57 billion against Russia pending an appeal to the Dutch Supreme Court, writing that the stay was inappropriate under the New York Convention and that the alleged error is part of a “broader trend” in courts within the circuit.
WASHINGTON, D.C. — A District of Columbia federal judge on May 17 denied the Kingdom of Spain’s motion to dismiss a petition to enforce an arbitral award against it worth more than 51 million euros for breaches of the Energy Charter Treaty (ECT) but granted Spain’s motion to stay the action pending the results of its application to annul the award before the International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID).
STRASBOURG, France — The European Court of Human Rights on May 20 ruled that an Italian company’s “right to a fair trial” was violated by the Italian government because a state-sponsored Roman arbitral tribunal that decided a dispute against the company in the early 2000s failed to elicit conflict-of-interest disclosures from one arbitrator who was actively representing the opposing party in litigation at the time of the arbitration.