IN THE MATTER OF the Arbitration (Recognition and Enforcement of Foreign Awards) Act, 2001
IN THE MATTER of the Arbitration Act 2017 AND
In the Matter of ICC Case No. 20549/ASM/JPA (C-20550/ASM)
Phillips Petroleum Company
Venezuela Limited and Conoco
Phillips Petrozualta B.V. V
Petroleus de Venezuela, S.A.,
Corpoguanipa, S.A. and PDVSA
Recognition and enforcement of arbitration award - Receiver- Appointment in aid of protection of property - Principles to be applied - Property assigned - Whether applicants will be entitled to claim property during subsequent enforcement proceedings - Whether real risk of dissipation of property which is currently the subject of sanctions imposed by a third party state.
The Claimants pursued claims in the International Chamber of Commerce ("ICC") against the Respondents in respect of the Respondents' breaches of agreements between the Claimants and the Respondents. These agreements were in relation to certain oil projects. The Claimants obtained in their favour, an award of the Arbitral Tribunal dated the 24th of April 2018 as amended by an addendum dated the 19th July 2018 made in the matter of ICC Case No.20549/ASM/JPA (C-20550/ASM) between the Claimants and the Respondents ("The Award").
The Respondents initially made payments towards the Award, but the Claimants are asserting that they defaulted on their obligations and as at 10th February 2020 the amount outstanding for payment, allowing for additional accrued interest, was US$1,292,478,124.00, together with interests continuing to accrue on that amount at a daily rate of US$287,154.00. It is on this basis, that the Claimants sought recognition and enforcement of the Award by a Fixed Date Claim Form filed on 26th March 2020.
On the 30th July 2020, the first hearing of a Fixed Date Claim Form, The Hon. Mr. Justice Batts ordered that the Award be registered in the Supreme Court of Jamaica and that the Applicant is permitted to enforce the Award. ("the Registration Order").
Mr. Justice Batts also ordered that the Respondents shall have 28 days from the date of service of the Registration Order to make an application to set aside registration of the Award. The Claimants were granted permission to serve the Registration Order outside the jurisdiction and by registered post on the Defendants. The Claimants have not been able to do so and the Court has granted an amendment to the Registration Order in respect of the method of service to be employed.
The Claimants assert that once the Respondents are served with the Registration Order, they will take active steps to prevent the enforcement of the Award. The Claimants are seeking to preserve significant assets within the jurisdiction of Jamaica which they say they have identified as assets to which the Defendants are entitled, pending further enforcement measures being taken.