The Firm has extensive experience in handling arbitrations and arbitration related issues with respect to both domestic and international arbitration regimes, including disputes under the ICC, LCIA, SIAC, DIAC, ICSID and UNCITRAL arbitration regimes. Members of the Firm have acted as arbitrators in international and domestic disputes, both as sole arbitrators as well as members of three-party arbitral tribunals, and are on the panel of approved arbitrators of the Dubai International Arbitration Centre and the Singapore International Arbitration Centre.
The expertise of the Firm in arbitration related matters has been repeatedly recognised. The three name partners of the Firm were all appointed by Pakistan as participants to the UNCITRAL Working Group II (Arbitration and Conciliation) held in February and September 2009. Pakistan was elected Rapporteur to the session in September 2009. Since 2011, all three name partners have been appointed to represent the Pakistan Business Council at the sessions of UNCITRAL Working Group II. The three name partners of the Firm also co-authored the chapter on Pakistan in the Asia Arbitration Handbook, a treatise published by the Oxford University Press in 2011. A member of the Firm was also appointed as an amicus curiae by the Honourable Lahore High Court, Lahore in an arbitration related matter. Another member of the Firm was appointed to the high-level committee set up to negotiate Bilateral Investment Treaties on behalf of Pakistan and advised the Government on related issues. In addition, a member of the Firm advised the Federal Government in revising a bill dealing with the domestic arbitration framework. Subsequently, when domestic arbitration became a provincial subject after the promulgation of the 18th Amendment to the Constitution of Pakistan in 2009, members of the Firm prepared a model provincial bill for revising the domestic arbitration framework in accordance with the UNCITRAL Model Law in collaboration with an agency set up by USAID.
The expertise of the Firm in arbitration related matters has also consistently been recognised by government agencies when selecting counsel in important disputes. The Firm was the lead local counsel for Pakistan in the dispute with India relating to the design of the Baglihar Hydro-Electric Plant. This dispute was decided by a Neutral Expert appointed by the World Bank and was the first of its kind to be adjudicated. The Firm subsequently also advised the Pakistan Commissioner for Indus Waters in the dispute relating to the Kishenganga Hydro-Electric Plant. The Firm also assisted the Attorney General for Pakistan in representing the Federal Government before the Supreme Court of Pakistan in a dispute arising out of an arbitration relating to the quantum of profits payable by the Federation under Article 161 of the Constitution of Pakistan.
The Firm has acted as counsel for Pakistan in the construction and public international law disputes with Impregilo of Italy and Bayindir of Turkey both filed before arbitral tribunals constituted by the International Centre for the Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) in Paris. The Firm has appeared before the ICSID tribunal in the Bayindir case as co-counsel in a panel consisting of international arbitration law experts from London and Paris. The award in the Bayindir case dismissed the US$ 756 million claim by Bayindir against Pakistan in its entirety. The Firm also assisted the Attorney General for Pakistan in the case involving SGS, a Swiss pre-shipment inspection company which was challenging arbitration in Pakistan as being precluded by Pakistan’s commitments under the ICSID Convention.
The Firm acted for the Pakistan Water and Power Development Authority in proceedings involving a broad spectrum of construction law issues arising out of the Ghazi-Barotha Hydropower Project before the Disputes Review Board and the arbitral tribunal constituted under the FIDIC contracts. The Firm was also involved in the well known arbitration related litigation between the Pakistan Water and Power Development Authority and The Hub Power Company Limited.
The Firm’s expertise in arbitration issues has also consistently been acknowledged by the private sector. Members of the Firm assisted senior counsel in the landmark Hitachi Limited case before the Supreme Court of Pakistan. Members of the Firm also assisted senior counsel in an LCIA arbitration in London and represented a multinational oil company in a multi-million dollar ICC arbitration arising out of a contractual dispute with one of its site contractors. The Firm has also advised a Karachi based group of companies in connection with ICC arbitration proceedings initiated against it by an international telecommunications conglomerate.
The Firm is currently acting in a number of arbitration matters. These matters include the following:
• acting for the claimant in a multi-billion US dollar ICSID claim against the State by a mining concessionaire;
• representing solar energy companies against the Central Power Purchasing Agency in three connected LCIA arbitrations relating to breach of contract and claims for liquidated damages;
• representing one of South Korea’s largest company’s in international arbitration under the SIAC rules in a dispute arising out of an international sale of goods agreement;
• representing a South African defence sub-contractor in court proceedings initiated by the main contractor to one of the Armed Forces in a contract involving an ICC arbitration clause. It is expected that the matter will be referred to ICC arbitration for which the Firm’s services will be required;
• representing a Dubai based company with respect to disputes regarding broadcasting rights in Pakistan. The Firm is also acting for that company in a number of domestic arbitrations and the partners have all appeared in Court in arbitration related matters, including a dispute between the International Cricket Council and the Pakistan Cricket Board, and the local arbitration filed by Pakistan against an entity which has filed ICSID proceedings against Pakistan;
• representing a local construction company in a domestic court challenge to an ICC award passed in Singapore by a Hong Kong based arbitrator;
• representing a local media company in challenging before domestic courts an UNCITRAL award passed by a Singapore-based arbitrator. The Firm had earlier also represented the same media company in the arbitration proceedings;
• representing a local media company in challenging a domestic award before the Honourable Islamabad High Court. The Firm had earlier represented the same media company in the arbitral proceedings. The Firm is also representing the same firm in arbitral proceedings pending before a different arbitrator;
• challenging a US$ 2.85 million domestic award before the Islamabad High Court on behalf of international investors;
• representing a group of dispossessed property owners in statutory arbitration proceedings to determine the quantum of compensation due for land originally requisitioned by the Government of Sindh in June 1947;
• representing a partner in a dispute involving a television production joint venture.