News 19 Dec. 2019

Two Curtis matters feature in PLC Magazine’s Practical Law Arbitration: Top 10 English cases of 2019

Two of Curtis’ cases being handled in our London office have been recognised in PLC Magazine’s list of Top 10 Arbitration related decisions emanating from the English courts for 2019. No firm had more entrants in the 2019 list.

General Dynamics United Kingdom Ltd v The State of Libya

This case in the Court of Appeal concerned the interpretation of a key provision in the State Immunity Act 1978 as it applies to the enforcement of arbitral awards against foreign sovereigns in the English courts. Curtis acts for the state of Libya. The decision on leave to appeal is currently before the Supreme Court.

Process & Industrial Developments v Federal Republic of Nigeria

This case relates to attempts to enforce a US$9.6bn award against the state of Nigeria for whom Curtis also acts in related U.S. proceedings. The case concerns a dispute over which courts have a supervisory jurisdiction over the arbitration, and the extent to which the English court should give credit to an earlier Nigerian court decision setting aside the liability award. The case includes a public policy challenge to the award based on the damages being punitive in effect. The case is now proceeding to the Court of Appeal.