After being called to the Bar in 1994, Ifti worked for a year in London with the Office of the General Counsel in the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development. On his return to Pakistan in 1995 he practiced with some of the leading commercial law firms in the country before establishing Bhandari Naqvi Riaz in 2003. His areas of expertise include domestic and international arbitration (private and public international law), banking, company, commercial, construction, Constitutional, corporate, power sector, privatisation and white collar crime and anti-money laundering litigation as well as corporate advisory and transactional services.  

Ifti has acted in investor-state treaty disputes and 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. He co-authored the chapter on Pakistan in the Asia Arbitration Handbook (Oxford 2011) and has represented Pakistan in Working Group II of the UN Commission on International Trade Law (UNCITRAL). He has also been appointed as an amicus curiae by the Lahore High Court.

Chambers and Partners has ranked Ifti in Band 1 for Commercial Dispute Resolution in Pakistan from 2014 to 2020 and he is one of the few lawyers in Pakistan to have been ranked for both dispute resolution and corporate advisory work. Chambers and Partners (the Asia Pacific 2017 edition) has quoted clients referring to Ifti as “a really impressive advocate with extraordinary pleading and drafting skills who always tries to cover all aspects of the matter at hand” and in the 2018 edition as “a leading disputes specialist advising on large-scale commercial litigation and arbitration. Clients provide warm praise of his abilities, one explaining: ‘He has an exceptional quality of head and heart; a thorough gentleman, honest and meticulous in his work. He contributes immaculate legal research and language.’”

Acted as the lead local counsel for the respondent in a US$750 m arbitral claim before ICSID in which all claims were dismissed

Acted as the lead local counsel in advising the respondent in the post-hearing stage of a US$450 m arbitral claim before ICSID; acted for the respondent in the subsequent litigation that was filed and the settlement negotiations

Acted in a number of construction contract disputes before the dispute resolution boards and arbitration proceedings under FIDIC contracts

Acted in a number of arbitrations in Pakistan and abroad arising out of contracts for the sale of goods and other commercial disputes and related court proceedings in Pakistan

Acted as junior counsel in the landmark judgment on international arbitration by the Supreme Court of Pakistan reported as Hitachi Limited v. Rupali Polyester Limited, 1998 SCMR 1618

Acted in a number of winding up proceedings and shareholder disputes

Acted for and against the Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan before the Superior Courts in a variety of corporate disputes and appellate proceedings, including for the SECP before the Supreme Court in a leading case on the interplay between the company law and the accountability laws reported as Muhammad Nadeem Anwar v. Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan, 2013 SCMR 1376

Acted for and against the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Pakistan before the Superior Courts

Acted for the Privatisation Commission in various proceedings before the Superior Courts

Acted for banks and for customers in banking matters before the Superior Courts and the Banking Courts and negotiated settlements

Acted before the Superior Courts in judicial review, administrative law, and constitutional matters

Acted for parties under investigation by the National Accountability Bureau, Federal Investigation Agency before the agencies and the Superior Courts

Conducted internal corporate inquiries arising out of allegations of corruption

Represented Pakistan in the UNCITRAL working group on the revision of the UNCITRAL arbitration rules

Assisted the Attorney General for Pakistan in negotiating a BIT with the USA (the treaty was not concluded)

Appeared before the Customs, Excise and Sales Tax Appellate Tribunal and the Federal Service Tribunal

Appeared before regulatory bodies such as the Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan, the National Electric Power Regulatory Authority, the Competition Commission of Pakistan, the State Bank of Pakistan, the Environmental Protection Department and in land acquisition proceedings

Advised on a wide range of transactional matters

Acted for and advised clients from a wide spectrum of sectors, such as: banking and non-banking finance, construction, insurance, real estate, zoning, textiles, pharmaceuticals, agro-industries, schools, cement manufacturers, sugar mills, technology, telecommunications and media, chemicals and petro-chemicals, the power sector, publishing, hotels, mining, defence contracting, a missionary church and the leader of a global religious community

  • Winchester College, Winchester, UK (1983 – 1987)
  • BA (Hons) in Philosophy, Politics and Economics, Oxford University, St Edmund Hall,      Oxford, UK (1988 – 1992)
  • Common Professional Examination in Law, College of Law, London, UK (1992-1993)
  • Member, Supreme Court Bar Association
  • Member, Lahore High Court Bar Association
  • Member, Punjab Bar Council

Contact

Emailiur@bnrlaw.net

Admissions

Called to the Bar of England and Wales1994
Advocate of the High Courts1997
Advocate of the Supreme Court2010

Areas of Expertise

Arbitration: Domestic and International
Banking and Finance
Commercial Litigation
Company Law and SECP Regulation
Constitutional Law and Human Rights
Construction Law
Power Sector Litigation
Privatisation
White Collar Crime