Paul Stothard

Norton Rose Fulbright (Middle East) LLP

United Arab Emirates
T:+971 4 369 6318
United Arab Emirates
T:+971 4 369 6318
Paul Stothard

Paul Stothard



Paul Stothard is a dispute resolution lawyer based in Dubai. He has particular experience of international arbitration. He advises clients on international disputes involving construction, energy and infrastructure, financial institutions, international trade, retail, hospitality, sports and media.

He has experience of both commercial and investment disputes, and has acted for both investors and states. In addition to his experience in international arbitration, Paul also has wide-ranging experience in international fraud litigation, and has led internal investigations into corruption and fraud.

Paul has appeared as advocate and been appointed as arbitrator on numerous occasions before a diverse range of courts and tribunals internationally. He has represented clients in courts (English High Court and Dubai International Financial Centre Court) and in arbitration (International Chamber of Commerce, London Court of International Arbitration, International Centre for the Settlement of Investment Disputes, UNCITRAL and Dubai International Arbitration Centre).

During his career, Paul has practiced international arbitration in London, Tokyo, Beijing and Dubai.


Professional experience

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  • Representing the Japanese / Turkish civil contractors in one of the largest construction disputes in the world with regard to the US$7.8bn contract for the construction of the civil works (underground and overground stations, bridges, carparks, depots, tunnels and the control centre) of a fully automated metro system. The claims, which were valued in excess of US$3bn, related to all aspects of the project and included issues related to design, delay, disputed variations, costs and scope.
  • Representing the owner of a billion-dollar landmark casino development in a Caribbean state in relation to claims against the government relating to breaches of the concession contract and claims against the contractor involving the construction of infrastructure for the development.
  • Representing a major Japanese civil contractor in an ICC arbitration against an international consultancy firm in relation to disputes under a design consultancy agreement for overground stations.
  • Representing two UAE-based developers in relation to US$400m DIAC arbitration arising out of the termination of construction contracts by a Dubai based employer. The dispute related to the cancellation of a mixed-use development in the UAE.
  • Representing a Chinese mining company in LCIA proceedings relating to the long-term supply contracts with entities in London and Sierra Leone.
  • Representing an energy company in ICSID proceedings against an African state about the expropriation of US$2bn contractual rights under an exploration and production agreement and related contracts.
  • Representing a major European energy company in relation to disputes with the other party to a joint operating agreement and gas valuation agreements including disputes relating to gas pricing, operational issues and gas transmission (UNCITRAL arbitration).
  • Representing a major European energy company in relation to disputes regarding the sale and purchase of certain North Sea assets (High Court, London).
  • Representing a consortium of four major international banks in an LCIA arbitration against a sovereign wealth fund following its default under a shari’a-compliant finance document.
  • Representing a state in relation to a claim arising under a bilateral investment treaty before ICSID. The claim concerned the alleged expropriation of a port facility valued at in excess of US$1bn. The claim was defended successfully on jurisdictional grounds.
  • Acting for a state energy company in relation to disputes with a joint venture partner relating to exploration wells in a Gulf state (LCIA arbitration).
  • Acting for a state energy company on a dispute with the supplier of drilling rigs (ICC arbitration).
  • Acting for a major international broadcaster in a dispute with a local partner concerning its Turkish operations (ICC arbitration).
  • Acting for a Middle-Eastern refinery operator in a dispute regarding alleged breaches of an offtake agreement for the supply of feedstock to owners of a petrochemical plant (ICC arbitration).
  • Acting for a piping subcontractor in a dispute with the general contractor for the construction of a refinery in a dispute involving allegations relating to delay, defects and fraud.

Paul is recognised in international directories as a leading international arbitration practitioner. Chambers International describes him as “an excellent manager and tactician” and “a class act” (2016). Legal 500 rates him as “reliable” and notes that “numerous commentators note that Paul Stothard is ‘very highly regarded in the legal community’ and point to his impressive level of activity as a testament to his talent and congeniality”.

  • Founder member of the ICC Commission on Arbitration in the UAE.
  • LCIA
  • ICC
  • Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators
  • Board member of Commercial Litigators Forum.
  • Society of Construction Law.