The most relevant updates from Middle East and Africa from the global International Arbitration and ADR practice group at Garrigues.
US Court asked to confirm ICC awards against Congo
Delaware-incorporated Customs and Tax Consultancy has recently filed a petition at the US District Court for the District of Columbia to confirm partial and final ICC awards against the Democratic Republic of the Congo ordering the state to pay more than US$91 million.The awards arise from a dispute over the DRC’s attempt to modernise its Customs and Excise Office, with claimants alleging that the DRC had failed to make timely payments and had further breached agreements when officials within the office refused to cooperate with the claimant´s personnel to stamp out alleged corruption in the office.
ICSID tribunal rejects €140 million claim brought by Veolia against Egypt
On 25 May 2018 an ICSID tribunal has rejected a €140 million claim brought by French utility company Veolia against Egypt under the France-Egypt bilateral investment treaty in relation to a waste management dispute subject to arbitration under the rules of the Cairo Regional Centre for International Commercial Arbitration.
Orange asks US Court to arrest Equatorial Guinean´s President Boeing
In a petition filed on 20 June 2018 with the US District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia, French telecoms group Orange has asked a US court for permission to seize a Boeing aircraft used by Equatorial Guinea’s president as it seeks to enforce the unpaid part of a €135 million ICC award against the state. Orange has asked the US court to recognise and validate the French court’s order as a foreign money judgment under Virginia state law as part of the enforcement of an ICC award arising from Equatorial Guinea’s breach of a 2011 settlement agreement that had purported to end a prior ICC dispute over their telecoms joint venture Getesa.
Lebanon hit by ICSID Treaty claim award in favour of private jet operator
On 25 June 2018 an ICSID tribunal issued its award allowing an investment treaty claim filed by German businessman Abed El Jaouni for breach of the fair and equitable treatment standard in the Germany-Lebanon bilateral investment treaty in a dispute involving the cancellation of private jet licenses in the country.The tribunal, however, rejected other heads of claim under the BIT and declined jurisdiction over claims by Lebanese-registered co-claimant Imperial Holding SAL and relating to El Jaouni’s business outside Lebanon.In addition, the tribunal invited the parties to make further submissions on the valuation of damages, if any, flowing from Lebanon’s treaty breach.
US Bay View Group files treaty claims against Rwanda
On 25 June 2018 US-incorporated Bay View Group and Spalena Company registered a claim against Rwanda before ICSID under the 2008 US-Rwanda bilateral investment treaty, in relation to a cancelled mining concession project in the west of the country.Bay View held the mining concession until 2011, when the licence was cancelled. In 2016 the Rwandan government issued exploration licences for the project to TriMetals, causing unfair treatment according to claimants.