Agility awarded $1.65bn in Dispute with Iraq's Korek

By John Lee.

The International Court of Arbitration of the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) has released its findings in the arbitration case between Iraq Telecom Limited, a subsidiary of Kuwait's Agility Public Warehousing Company KSCP, and International Holdings Limited, an affiliate of Agility, as claimants; and Korek Telecom Limited and Sirwan Saber Mustafa Barzani, as respondents in relation to allegations of fraud and corruption orchestrated by Korek Telecom Company and its controlling shareholder, Sirwan Saber Mustafa Barzani, with a view to unlawfully causing the expropriation of IT's and IH's $810 million investment in Korek Telecom.

According to a statement from Agility, the ICC award holds that Korek and Barzani are jointly and severally liable, and awards damages to IH and IT of $1.65 billion.

It adds that the ICC award is final and binding.

Tarek Sultan, Agility's Vice Chairman, said:

"We hope that this outcome brings resolution and closure to the issue and that the respondents will now honor their obligations in a manner commensurate with that of businesses operating in countries that respect the rule of law.

"We remain focused on continuing to move forward with our growth strategy and profitable business partnerships - both in Iraq and around the world."

Agility, which has been doing business in Iraq for over 20 years, was represented by Gibson Dunn & Crutcher LLP, White and Case LLP and Meysan Partners LLP.

Agility has previously claimed victory in a related case in the Lebanese courts, and had a claim denied by the International Centre for the Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID).

Sirwan Barzani is reported to be a nephew of the Kurdistan Region's former president, Massoud Barzani, and first cousin of his successor, Nechirvan Barzani.

[Update 27th March: More details from White and Case LLP.]

(Source: Agility)

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