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Paul Stothard is a dispute resolution lawyer based in London and Dubai. He has particular experience of international arbitration and advises clients on international disputes (including disputes relating to construction, energy and infrastructure, financial institutions, mining, telecoms, international trade, retail, hospitality, sports and media). He led the firm's disputes practice in the Middle East and was previously head of dispute resolution at another major international law firm.
Paul has experience of both commercial and investment disputes, and has acted for both investors and states. In addition to his work in international arbitration, he also has wide-ranging experience in international fraud litigation, asset-tracing and the international enforcement of judgments and arbitral awards.
Paul frequently appears as lead advocate in high-value arbitrations and been appointed as arbitrator on numerous occasions. 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). Paul is a currently a member of the ICC UK's National Committee and was a founding member of the ICC UAE's Arbitration Committee.
During his career, Paul has practiced international arbitration in London, Tokyo, Beijing and Dubai.
- Japanese / Turkish civil contractors in one of the largest construction disputes in the world with regard to a US$7.8bn contract for the construction of the civil works (underground and overground stations, bridges, carparks, depots, tunnels and a control centre) of a fully automated metro system. The claims, which were valued at in excess of US$3bn, related to all aspects of the project and included issues concerning design, delay, disputed variations, costs and scope.
- The owner of a billion-dollar landmark casino development in a Caribbean state over claims against the government relating to breaches of the concession contract and claims against the contractor involving the construction of infrastructure for the development
- 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
- Two UAE-based developers in a 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
- A Chinese mining company in LCIA proceedings relating to long-term supply contracts with entities in London and Sierra Leone
- 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
- A major European energy company in relation to disputes with the other party to a joint operating agreement and gas valuation agreements, including disputes over gas pricing, operational issues and gas transmission (UNCITRAL arbitration)
- A major European energy company on disputes regarding the sale and purchase of certain North Sea assets (High Court, London)
- 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
- 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 and was defended successfully on jurisdictional grounds.
- A state energy company on disputes with a joint venture partner relating to exploration wells in a Gulf state (LCIA arbitration)
- A state energy company on a dispute with a supplier of drilling rigs (ICC arbitration)
- A major international broadcaster in a dispute with a local partner concerning its Turkish operations (ICC arbitration)
- A Middle-Eastern refinery operator in a dispute over alleged breaches of an offtake agreement for the supply of feedstock to owners of a petrochemical plant (ICC arbitration)
- 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 recognized in international directories as a leading international arbitration practitioner. Client feedback gathered by Chambers International 2022 describes him as "very bright and focused", "a very strong lawyer in the region", "He is a very good lawyer; he really knows his stuff and he has a lot of experience.". The Legal 500 rates him as "reliable" and comments 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". Who's Who Legal ranks Paul as a Thought Leader in Construction law (2022) and a Global Leader in both Arbitration (2023) and Construction (2022).
- Founder member of the ICC Commission on Arbitration in the UAE
- Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators
- Board member of Commercial Litigators Forum
- Society of Construction Law.