Elisabeth Eljuri

Head of Latin America, Partner

Elisabeth Eljuri

Caracas

T:+58 212.276.0002

F:+58 212.276.0011

Elisabeth Eljuri is Head of Latin America for Norton Rose Fulbright. She is also one of our senior energy practitioners and a senior member of our international arbitration practice group globally.

In Latin America, Ms. Eljuri focuses on corporate and transactional work involving high-end sophisticated transactions for Fortune 500 corporations as well as international dispute work related to major projects and infrastructure.

She has significant M&A experience and over the past 20 years of practice, in addition to her contracts and general business practice, she has been regularly advising energy companies engaged in high-level transactions. She has extensive experience in profit/production sharing agreements, JOAs, farm-outs, gas licences, upstream joint venture companies as well as midstream and downstream related and major projects. Major deals she has handled include corporate acquisitions of hydrocarbon companies and producing areas (in several Latin American countries), some of the largest extra-heavy oil projects in the world, a crude oil storage and ship loading project, two of the world’s largest gas injection projects, a significant private equity deal to form a new E&P player, a major coal project and several acquisitions of other mining projects.

Ms. Eljuri also has significant experience in the Mexican oil and gas regulatory framework due to her advisory work in Mexico over the past fifteen years. She is considered a leading natural resources and energy practitioner in the Latin American region and worldwide. Every year since 2010, Who’s Who in Oil and Gas has selected Ms. Eljuri as one of the top 10 energy practitioners worldwide, stating that, “Eljuri is without question one of the world’s leading oil and gas lawyers… Eljuri has provided assistance in high profile disputes and transactions for Fortune 500 energy clients over the course of a fantastic career.” 

On the dispute side, she frequently acts as co-counsel in international arbitrations, including ICC and ICSID procedures. She has also been retained as an independent expert in international arbitrations and court proceedings and has spoken and published extensively in the area of energy and resources investment disputes and investment treaty law. Ms. Eljuri also has experience in internal investigations pertaining to compliance matters under the FCPA and European anticorruption legislation.

Ms. Eljuri is also actively committed to legal education and corporate training. She is a past president of the prestigious Houston-based AIPN. She is one of the co-chairs as well as an instructor of the AIPN/RMMLF Upstream Short Course held in Houston every year, she has been an instructor of the Oil Negotiations Skills Workshop sponsored by AIPN and she also presents courses on subjects of interest for the energy community upon clients’ request.

Ms. Eljuri served as the managing partner of the Caracas office in 2007 and 2008 and was profiled in Latin Lawyer as Latin America’s only serving female leader of an established law firm. Since 2009 she has been a member of our Canadian management committee.

Top Ranked, Chambers Latin America 2013
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  • Year of call
    New York 1993
    Venezuela 1991
  • Law school
    LL.M., Harvard Law School, 1992
    LL.B., Universidad Católica Andrés Bello, 1991
  • Speaking engagements
    • “Changes to Fiscal Regimes arising from Resource Nationalism,” World Gas Conference. Paris, June 2015.
    • “Challenges and Opportunities with the Mexican Production Sharing Contract,”  Rocky Mountain Mineral Law Foundation,  Special Institute, Cartagena, April 2015.
    • “Political Risk in Oil and Gas Projects:  Lessons Learned in Latin America,”  AIPN Spring Conference.  Austin, April 2015.
    • “Key Features of International E&P Contracts,”  CWC Mexico Conference.  Mexico City, October 2014.
    • “Case Study on Consolidation of Arbitrations under the ICC Rules,” ICC PANARB Conference, Panama, August 2014.
    • “The Spectre of Enforcement Risk and Inefficient Arbitral Procedures,” Annual ITA Workshop, Dallas, June 2014.
    • “Perspectives in Latin American Civil Law Issues in AIPN Model Contracts,” AIPN Model Contracts Workshop, San Francisco, June 2014.
    • “Mexico’s New Upstream Regime: Who benefits?” Oil Council Latin America Conference, Bogota, January 2014.
    • “Resource Nationalism, Expropriation and Creeping Expropriation affecting the Extractive Sector,” at the Special Institute on International Energy and Minerals Arbitration, Rocky Mountain Mineral Law Foundation, Toronto, September 2013.
    • “Joint Ventures with National Oil Companies,” National Oil Company and Government Entity Conference and Workshop, London, December 2012.
  • Selected client work

    Clients for whom Ms. Eljuri has acted as lead counsel or co-counsel in oil and gas, corporate and arbitration matters include the following:

    Oil and Gas

    • Major European and Asian private and state-owned oil companies investing between US$15 and US$20 billion in extra-heavy oil projects
    • Numerous international oil companies negotiating or re-negotiating upstream investments in Venezuela and other regions of Latin America
    • The purchasers of several major mining projects in Venezuela
    • A US private equity fund in the acquisition of an oil service company’s assets in Latin America

    Corporate

    • The French company Groupe Casino in a complex series of M&A transactions to partially divest from its hypermarket (EXITO) and supermarket (CADA) chain in Venezuela.  The local company was valued at around US$700 million
    • A UK-based oil services company in a major corporate reorganization
    • A US/Colombian bank in a divestiture transaction in Venezuela
    • One of the world's largest companies in an M&A transaction

    Arbitration

    • Various clients in major investment arbitrations concerning the natural resources sector filed at ICSID
    • Various clients in major commercial arbitrations under ICC rules in New York
  • Rankings and recognitions
    • Latinvex: Top 50 Female Lawyers (International) Specializing in Latin America
    • Latin America Corporate Counsel Association, 2015: Energy
    • Chambers Latin America, Venezuela 2015: Star Performer:  Energy & Natural Resources
    • Chambers Latin America, Venezuela 2015: Band 1:  Corporate/M&A
    • Chambers Latin America, Latin America Wide 2015: Band 1:  Energy & Natural Resources
    • Chambers Global: The World’s Leading Lawyers for Business, 2015: Energy & Natural Resources (Band 1 - Latin America Wide), Corporate/M&A (Band 1 – Venezuela), Energy & Natural Resources (Star Individual – Venezuela) and Energy & Natural Resources (Foreign Expert – Mexico)
    • Legal 500 Latin America 2013-14, Venezuela: Tier 1 leading lawyer in Corporate/M&A and Energy & Natural Resources
    • IFLR1000: Energy and Infrastructure: Latin America, 2013 – Leading lawyer in Banking and Finance; Projects; Corporate and Commercial; Disputes; and Energy & Natural Resources; and Compliance and Public Law
    • Chambers Global: The World’s Leading Lawyers for Business, 2013: Corporate/M&A and Energy & Natural Resources (star individual)
    • Chambers Latin America 2014 in the areas of Energy & Natural Resources (star individual ranking) and Corporate/M&A
    • The International Who’s Who of Oil and Gas Lawyers 2011, 2012, 2013 “one of the ten most highly regarded individuals” in the world
    • Best Lawyers 2012 – Lawyer of the Year in the areas of Corporate and M&A
    • Who's Who Legal, Global Mining Law Firm of the Year, 2012
    • Chambers Global: The World’s Leading Lawyers for Business, 2012: Corporate/M&A, Energy & Natural Resources
    • Latin Lawyer Law Firm Leader of the Year 2012
    • Chambers Global 2011 (Latin America) in the area of Projects – Latin America’s Top Twenty Oil & Gas Experts (Spotlight table)
    • Chambers Global and Chambers Latin America 2011 in the areas of Energy & Natural Resources (star individual ranking) and Corporate/M&A
    • The International Who’s Who of Arbitration Lawyers
    • The International Who’s Who of Mergers & Acquisitions Lawyers
    • The International Who’s Who of Corporate Governance
    • The International Who’s Who of Project Finance Lawyers
    • Euromoney Expert Guides 2010 – named "The Best of the Best 2010’ in Energy and Natural Resources “one of the top 25 natural resources and energy lawyers in the world”
    • PLC Which Lawyer? (Venezuela) in the area of Energy
  • Memberships and activities
    • Association of International Petroleum Negotiators (AIPN)
      • Past President (2014-)
      • President (2013-2014)
      • President-Elect (2012-2013)
      • Vice-President (2008-2012)
      • Regional Director for Latin America (2005-2008)
    • Institute of Transnational Arbitration (ITA)
      • Chair, Americas Initiative (2014-)
      • Vice Chair, Americas Initiative (2013-2014)
    • Young Presidents’ Organization (YPO)
      • Officer of the Venezuela Chapter (2010-2014)  
    • International Bar Association
      • Officer of the Oil and Gas Committee (2010- )
    • American Bar Association
    • New York State Bar Association
    • Miranda State Bar Association (Venezuela)
    • Official arbitrator of the local ICC chapter in Venezuela (Caracas Chamber of Commerce)
    • Official arbitrator of the CEDCA arbitration centre in Caracas
    • Asociación Latinoamericana de Arbitraje
    • Harvard Law School Alumni Association
      • Executive Committee
    • Editorial Board of the Journal of World Energy Law & Business
    • Council of the Australasian Forum for International Arbitration (AFIA)
    • National administrator for the Philip C Jessup International Law Moot Court Competition, Venezuela (1990- ) and President of the Philip C Jessup Foundation in Venezuela
    • Contracts professor, Universidad Central de Venezuela (1994-1996)