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Dentons PNG, the Papua New Guinea firm of Dentons, has represented the country in obtaining from its Supreme Court a judgment quashing a $3 billion arbitration claim brought by Independent Timbers and Stevedoring which was advised by Squire Patton Boggs, Manatt, Phelps & Philips and Leahy Lewin Lowing Sullivan.
The claim was brought by IT&S in 2015, and made against PNG’s failure to act on a forestry and road project agreement in the country’s Western Province.
The Dentons team, led by partners Erik Andersen and Stephen Massa, was instructed by the PNG attorney-general and state solicitor. It contested the arbitration and challenged the arbitral court’s jurisdiction over the claim.
After a lengthy battle, PNG’s Supreme Court ruled that a claim by arbitration is not authorised in this case, permanently staying the arbitration and awarding all costs to PNG.
According to Dentons, had the ruling not been in its client’s favour, the result would have been worth a third of the country’s annual budget.
Source : Asian Legal Business