It was announced this week that Russian Federation has been ordered to pay $50 billion to the former owners of Yukos, what was once the country's largest oil company, after a Dutch appeals court overturned a previous ruling. The decision by The Hague Court of Appeal reinstates the world's largest arbitration award.
Zaiwalla was consulted after the award was published in the Yukos case and contributed to the earlier success in The Hague District Court in respect of the Russian Federation challenging the awards. The Firm assisted the Russian Government in selecting and instructing Professor van den Berg to act for them in the Dutch Court after Sarosh Zaiwalla, Founder and Senior Partner, was consulted. Following the success in the Dutch court for the appeal process where Russia lost, Zaiwalla was not involved in any way.
At the time, Mr Zaiwalla raised his argument with Professor van den Berg, noting that the energy treaty had not been approved by the Russian Parliament, and therefore the arbitration agreement was non-existent. Mr Zaiwalla's suggested argument won the case, saving Russia a liability of $50 billion. Mr Zaiwalla has referred to his involvement in the Yukos case in his book “Honour Bound - adventures of an Indian lawyer in the English Court", which has been published by HarperCollins.
Commenting on this news, Mr Zaiwalla said: "Our initial involvement in the Yukos matter and subsequent victory opened a lot of doors for Zaiwalla & Co. in Russia. Our argument won the case and gave them the ground to challenge the award."
Zaiwalla & Co was highlighted in The Letter of the Law on Friday, 21 February 2020 and can be accessed here.