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INTERNATIONAL ARBITRATION: Game, set and match

28 January 2011  

Ben Holland and Guy Pendell look at the judgment in Dallah and the tough line taken on the enforcement of New York Convention awards in England

The Supreme Court of the UK has now issued its first decision concerning the legal framework supporting international arbitration. The case under scrutiny, Dallah Real Estate and Tourism Holding Co v The Ministry of Religious Affairs, Government of Pakistan [2010] had created controversy amongst international arbitration users, even before the Supreme Court’s judgment was handed down. In Dallah, the Court of Appeal had upheld a first instance decision to refuse to enforce an ICC award made in France by a prominent three-member international arbitration tribunal composed of a former chief justice of Pakistan and a former English Law Lord. The Supreme Court unanimously upheld the judgment of the Court of Appeal. In doing so, it held that no arbitration agreement existed to which Pakistan was a party and that there were no other grounds for enforcing the award.

Additional Info

  • Case(s) Referenced:

    Dallah v Pakistan (Dallah Real Estate and Tourism Holding Co v The Ministry of Religious Affairs, Government of Pakistan [2010] UKSC 46

    Fiona Trust & Holding Corp & ors v Privalov & ors [2007] UKHL 40

    Municipalite de Khoms El Mergeb v Dalico Cass. Civ 1ere, 20 Dec 1993.

    Peterson Farms Inc v C & M Farming Ltd [2004] EWHC 121 (Comm)