International law firm Bird & Bird wins a $149m judgment from the English Commercial Court for Carpatsky Petroleum Corporation (CPC), a subsidiary of Kuwait Energy, against PJSC Ukrnafta arising out of a joint activity agreement relating to gas fields in Ukraine.
The Dispute Resolution team at Bird & Bird led by partner Sophie Eyre and assisted by associate Simona Peter, represented CPC and sought to enforce an arbitral award from Stockholm under the New York Convention in London. Ukrnafta claimed that the award was invalid claiming fraud, issue estoppel, varying governing laws, invalidity of arbitration agreement and non-existent parties to agreements. The claims led to a full retrial of all issues raised in the arbitration and experts in Ukrainian civil and criminal law, Delaware law and Swedish law were required. The case has provided good guidance from the English Commercial Court on issue estoppel and the inability of parties to swap and change governing laws between different courts.
Sophie Eyre, co-head of the London Dispute Resolution practice at Bird & Bird says: "This has been a hard fought legally technical dispute which has lasted over three years. Our London Dispute Resolution team have proudly represented CPC throughout the process and ultimately, the English Commercial Court came to the right conclusion."