The K&L Gates Qatar-based Construction & Infrastructure team received two awards during the recent 2019 Qatar Business Law Forum Awards, retaining the “Property and Construction Firm of the Year” title for a second consecutive year, as well as earning a new recognition for “Alternative Dispute Resolution Firm of the Year.” The annual forum and awards ceremony recognizes exceptional achievement within Qatar’s legal community and is judged by a panel of nearly 30 industry leaders, academic practitioners, and government officials. The firm is honored to receive these awards, which highlight our commitment to not only the Qatari market but also our Middle East practice.
K&L Gates is pleased to have been named the “Best Firm to Handle the Construction Project of the Future” by Above the Law.
“The construction industry has been around for centuries, but that doesn’t mean it hasn’t adapted to the changing times. The Construction and Infrastructure Group at K&L Gates draws from vast past experience to focus on ensuring that construction projects are sustainable for the next generation. The firm’s lawyers specialize in niche areas like integrating technology and IP into construction projects and incorporating clean energy and green initiatives. When you’re planning a construction project for a better tomorrow, K&L Gates is thinking ahead.”
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The Q&A is part of the global guide to construction and projects. Areas covered include trends and significant deals, the main parties, procurement arrangements, transaction structures and corporate vehicles, financing projects, security and contractual protections required by funders, standard forms of contract, risk allocation, exclusion of liability, caps and force majeure. Also covered are material delays and variations, appointing and paying contractors, subcontractors, licences and consents, project insurance, labour laws, health and safety, environmental issues, corrupt business practices and bribery, bankruptcy and insolvency, public private partnerships (PPPs), dispute resolution, tax, the main construction organisations, and proposals for reform.Read More
By Michael P. Cotton, K&L Gates, Pittsburgh
Through a recent amendment to Article 257 of the UAE Penal Code, any arbitrators, experts, or translators who issue biased decisions or opinions in UAE arbitration proceedings may now be subject to criminal liability. The new law has led to widespread concern and uncertainty in the international arbitration community.
In Appeal No. 173/2016, the Qatar Court of Cassation considered an appeal against the Court of Appeal’s decision dismissing an application for the enforcement of an International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) award.
The Qatari Court of Cassation has clarified the position on enforcement of foreign arbitral awards in Qatar, by confirming that none of the domestic requirements relating to certification and authentication of foreign official documents apply to international awards, thanks to the New York Convention.
This judgment is a significant step in the right direction for arbitration in Qatar, especially where it concerns the hotly debated topic of enforcement of foreign awards. Qatar, which has a mixed legal system (Civil Law based on overriding principles of the Shari’a), does not recognise the principle of legal precedent in the same way as a common law jurisdiction does. Judges are generally not strictly bound by the decisions made in previous cases or by superior courts. However, whilst this judgment may not be strictly binding on the lower courts in Qatar, it may be considered as highly persuasive, and is therefore not a case that the lower courts should overlook lightly.
It remains to be seen whether the French courts will uphold or dismiss the appeal in the parallel proceedings to annul the award. Until then, the Court of Cassation’s judgment stands and provides considerable clarity on the requirements for enforcement of an ICC award in Qatar. (Appeal No. 173/2016).
Welcome to this 32nd edition of Arbitration World.
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We are very pleased to include in this edition, as part of our series of guest contributions from expert witnesses, an article by Howard Rosen and Noel Matthews of FTI Consulting, regarding how “country risk” can affect the value of investments and the approach towards this issue in damages calculations in international arbitration.
We review recent developments in arbitration in Qatar, including court decisions regarding the validity of arbitration agreements and the enforcement of arbitration awards. As part of a series of articles related to so-called “Bermuda Form” liability insurance policies, we look at the process of formation of the arbitral tribunal in Bermuda Form policies and whether such insurance policies may conflict with certain U.S. state laws regulating insurance.
We report on a recent decision of the English Commercial Court regarding enforcement of a tribunal’s order for a provisional payment, as well as a recent UK Privy Council decision on the meaning and effect of permissive arbitration clauses. We review the new mediation rules of the Vienna International Arbitration Centre (VIAC) and report on the work of an International Bar Association (IBA) Subcommittee in assessing how states have defined the public policy exception under the New York Convention.
We review some recent decisions of the Federal Supreme Court of Switzerland on arbitration award set-aside applications in the past year. We are also very pleased to include a guest contribution from Ben Beaumont, a barrister from Thomas More Chambers and Chairman of the Arbitration Club, regarding a recent decision of the Federal Supreme Court of Switzerland on the role of a Dispute Adjudication Board (DAB) under the FIDIC Red Book regime.
We also provide our usual update on developments from around the globe in international arbitration and investment treaty arbitration.
We hope you find this edition of Arbitration World of interest, and we welcome any feedback (email email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org).
In a previous blog post, we looked at suspension and termination of a construction contract under a Civil Code system. We focused, in particular, on the FIDIC form of contract and looked at how that would be treated under the Qatar Civil Code.
In this article, we will continue that review, but look at how suspension and termination would operate under the UAE Civil Code.
By Alexander Brightman, K&L Gates, Doha
Although “freedom of contract” is a concept that is recognised in both the common law and civil law jurisdictions, the codified and prescriptive nature of a civil law system means that the relevant provisions of the Civil Code may even be implied into robustly drafted contracts, including standard forms. As set out below, such implied provisions could have the undesirable effect of delaying termination whilst a court order is obtained or exposing the terminating party to a claim for breach of contract (and compensation) for unlawful termination. In this article, I will be discussing suspension and termination rights under the FIDIC Contract (Red and Yellow Books), before examining the position under the Qatar Civil Code. In a follow-up blog post, I will look at suspension and termination under the UAE Civil Code.
K&L Gates and Marsh recently co-sponsored a one-day, complimentary seminar titled “EPC Contracting Issues in the Oil & Gas Industry.”
The seminar featured six hour-long sessions, including a luncheon presentation by Robert Peterson, senior partner at Oliver Wyman, and an industry roundtable review panel consisting of industry experts from Exxon Mobil, Phillips 66, Chicago Bridge & Iron Company, Fluor, and Aker Solutions.
More than 100 representatives from leading energy companies attended the seminar at the JW Marriott Houston Downtown.
Houston partners Randel Young and John Sullivan III, Pittsburgh partners Richard Paciaroni and Jason Richey, London partner Matthew Smith, Washington, D.C. partner Steven Sparling, and Dallas partner Beth Petronio, along with Pittsburgh associate Jackie Celender, presented during the seminar.
Seminar materials can be found here.