Update: Claim against Rwanda at ICSID

On May 24th counsel from Joseph Hage Aaronson LLP, a law firm based in London, submitted two memoranda on behalf of the Rwandan government. One of the memoranda covered preliminary objections and the other is a counter-memorial.

The case was brought by Bayview Group LLC and The Spalena Company LLC against the government of Rwanda based on the Rwanda-US BIT, filed on June 22nd 2018. The dispute relates to the cancellation of a mining concession earlier last year.

With regards to preliminary objections, counsel argues that the tribunal lacks jurisdiction:

  • Ratione temporis: some of the claims pre-date the coming into force of the Rwanda-US BIT and that claims related to expropriation, violation of the FET and MST,MFN and NT standards are out of time.
  • Ratione personae: the claimants has not sufficiently proven that they own or control the mining company whose license has been revoked in Rwanda not have they shown financial loss arising from the alleged breaches
  • Ratione materiae: the claimant's Investment does not qualify as such under the Rwanda-US BIT or ICSID rules.
  • Ratione Voluntaris: the claimant has not respected the dispute settle process under the Rwanda-US BIT which requires

On June 28th, the tribunal would has issued a decision on the Respondet’s request to address its objections as preliminary objections, and as such the proceedings on the merits have been suspended. The tribunal will therefore make a decision on these objections prior to reviewing the merits of the case.

The Claimant’s are represented by Duane Morris out of USA. The tribunal is composed of J.Truman Bidwell JR appointed by the claimanr, Barbara Dohmann appointed by the respondent and Nicholas Phillips.

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