Ruby Roz Agricol v Republic of Kazakhstan

15 March, 2017

Paul Key QC and Siddharth Dhar acted for the Republic of Kazakhstan in major 7-day Commercial Court trial involving detailed allegations of Kazakh and Lebanese law relating to very significant claims brought against the State by Ruby Roz, a Kazakh poultry farm company. The sum in dispute was approximately $400m and brought into question whether the dispute resolution clause apparently entered into by the State was enforceable. The Court was required to consider the underlying basis for State immunity and consent to non-local dispute resolution.

Mr Justice Knowles agreed with a 2013 award issued by an UNCITRAL tribunal, which in August 2013 had rejected Ruby Roz’s claims against Kazakhstan on the basis of lack of jurisdiction.

Mr Justice Knowles also denied Ruby Roz the opportunity to apply for further appeal and ordered the company to reimburse the state US$608,000 by way of an immediate interim payment on account of legal fees. The UK Arbitration Act permits, in certain circumstances, a full re-hearing of the jurisdictional arguments which were run in the underlying arbitration.

Paul and Siddharth were instructed by Peter Wolrich and Virginie Liautaud at Curtis, Mallet-Prevost Colt & Mosle LLP.