Practice

International Litigation & Arbitration

Leading firm in international law and global disputes

Foley Hoag is recognized for having one of the world’s most experienced International Litigation and Arbitration practices. In addition to our highly-renowned Public International Law practice, the firm boasts a sophisticated and widely recognized International Arbitration practice that handles complex and high-volume controversies, both in investor-State disputes and commercial disputes.

Publications such as Chambers and Partners, Global Arbitration Review, Who’s Who Legal, Legal500 and Latinvex, among others, have recognized our International Litigation and Arbitration team among the top practices in the field, and our attorneys among the best practitioners. Recent recognitions include being named  "Practice of the Year" by Law360 and “Arbitration Team of the Year” by Jus Mundi.

Our firm has an unparalleled record of success representing sovereign States and State-owned entities in a wide range of international disputes. We are the counsel of choice of more than 60 States and State-owned enterprises on State-to-State, investor-State and commercial arbitrations pertaining to:

  • International Treaties
  • International Investment Law and Bilateral Investment Treaties
  • Delimitation of Maritime and Land Boundaries
  • Sovereign and Diplomatic Privileges and Immunities
  • International Taxation
  • International Aviation 
  • International Environmental Law
  • Use of force and the law of armed conflict
  • International Trade and Sanctions
  • Human Rights
  • United Nations and International Organizations
  • International Commercial Disputes

Our lawyers have experience handling disputes arising out of international contracts in the fields of:

  • Infrastructure and Public Works
  • Energy
  • Oil & Gas
  • Mining
  • Telecommunications
  • Intellectual property 
  • International purchase and sale of goods and services 

We have appeared before all major international arbitral fora and our attorneys frequently sit as arbitrators in cases disputed before these, including:

  • International Court of Justice
  • International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID)
  • International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea
  • International Chamber of Commerce (ICC)
  • London Court of Arbitration (LCIA)
  • International Centre for Dispute Resolution (ICDR)
  • Stockholm Chamber of Commerce (SCC)
  • International Institute for Conflict Prevention and Resolution (CPR)
  • American Arbitration Association

Additionally, we have had unparalleled success in obtaining the dismissal of cases while representing sovereign States in litigation in U.S. and French national courts. Our experience includes defenses based on:

  • Jurisdictional immunity under the U.S. Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act and French principles of sovereign immunity
  • Diplomatic and head-of-State immunities
  • Immunity of the governmental property of sovereign States from judicial attachment and execution

Our team is widely recognized for its diversity. Trained in both common and civil law, our more than 50 attorneys are fluent in more than 20 languages. While our firm has acted on behalf of States and State-owned entities across the globe, we recently launched our Latin America and Africa practices to help us better serve our clients in the these regions.

Areas of Focus

Our team has handled several of the most high-profile matters of the last four decades in the fields of:
  • Public International Law
  • International Investment Law and Bilateral Investment Treaties
  • Delimitation of Maritime and Land Boundaries
  • Sovereign and Diplomatic Privileges and Immunities
  • International Taxation
  • International Aviation
  • International Environmental Law
  • Use of force and the law of armed conflict
  • International Trade and Sanctions
  • Human Rights
  • United Nations and International Organizations
  • Commercial Arbitration

Experience

Our distinguished track record includes the following cases and clients:

STATE-TO-STATE DISPUTES

  • Application of the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide (The Gambia v. Myanmar). We represent the Republic of The Gambia in a lawsuit under the Genocide Convention seeking to hold Myanmar accountable under international law for genocide against the Rohingya. We secured a unanimous provisional measures order against Myanmar.
  • Application of the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination (Azerbaijan v. Armenia and Armenia v. Azerbaijan). We represent Armenia in proceedings arising from allegations of breach of the CERD. We secured critical victories for Armenia on the Parties’ requests for provisional measures.
  • The State of Qatar and the Arab Republic of Egypt, the Kingdom of Bahrain, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates (2017) – Application (A); and, the State of Qatar and the Arab Republic of Egypt, the Kingdom of Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates (2017) – Application (B). We successfully represented the State of Qatar in proceedings before the ICJ brought by Bahrain, Egypt, Saudi Arabia and the UAE against decisions on the jurisdiction of the ICAO Council to hear a complaint by Qatar arising under the Convention on International Civil Aviation and the International Air Services Transit Agreement. 
  • Land and Maritime Delimitation and Sovereignty over Islands (Gabon/Equatorial Guinea). We represent the Republic of Equatorial Guinea in a dispute with Gabon regarding the maritime boundary, the land boundary and sovereignty over islands. 
  • Guyana v. Venezuela (Case Concerning the Arbitral Award of 3 October 1899). We represent Guyana in a case brought to confirm the international boundary between the two States as determined by an arbitral award whose validity Venezuela has challenged.
  • Nicaragua v. Colombia (Case Concerning Territorial and Maritime Dispute). We successfully represented Nicaragua in this case to delimit maritime boundaries in the western Caribbean Sea. Nicaragua achieved a major victory over Colombia, obtaining access to the full extent of its 200 nautical mile exclusive economic zone and continental shelf, which Colombia sought to cut off at 70 nautical miles, and more than 75% of the waters claimed by both States in the Caribbean Sea.
  • Argentina v. Uruguay (Case Concerning Pulp Mills on the Uruguay River). We successfully represented Uruguay in this proceeding, defending its right to sustainable development through the construction of a paper pulp mill by showing that the mill satisfied the highest environmental standards. The Court rejected Argentina’s request to shut down the plant based on unproven allegations of harm to the river shared by the two States.
  • Philippines v. China. We successfully represented the Philippines in an arbitration pursuant to Annex VII of the United Nations Convention Law of the Sea regarding maritime jurisdiction. The Tribunal rejected China’s claim to “historic rights” in the maritime areas encompassed by its so-called “nine-dashed line” as inconsistent with the U.N. Convention on the Law of the Sea, and found that China violated the Philippines' sovereign rights under the Convention.
  • Bangladesh v. Myanmar. We successfully represented Bangladesh in this case before the International Tribunal on the Law of the Sea to delimit the maritime boundary between Bangladesh and Myanmar in the Bay of Bengal. The Judgment, issued on 14 March 2012, gave Bangladesh the vast majority of the disputed maritime area, as well as an extended continental shelf beyond 200 nautical miles.

 

INVESTOR-STATE DISPUTES

  • Raiffeisen Bank International AG and Raiffeisen Bank Austria d.d. v. Republic of Croatia. We successfully represented Croatia in an UNCITRAL arbitration under the Croatia-Austria BIT, as well as in parallel proceedings before German courts. We secured a historical decision of the Oberlandesgericht accepting our request that the Claimants’ request for arbitration be inadmissible under EU law in accordance with the European Court of Justice’s Judgment in Achmea that the arbitration provisions in intra-EU investment treaties are void. This was the first time a court in the European Union concluded that the principles of EU law enunciated by the CJEU in Achmea apply beyond the Achmea litigation.
  • Ritika Mehta, Vinita Agarwal, and Prenay Agarwal v. the Oriental Republic of Uruguay. We successfully represented Uruguay in an UNCITRAL arbitration before the PCA under the Uruguay-UK BIT, involving a large-scale iron ore mining project, which Claimants alleged to be worth $3.47 billion. The tribunal unanimously denied jurisdiction and ordered Claimants to pay Uruguay’s legal fees
  • Thomas Gosling and others v. Republic of Mauritius. We successfully helped Mauritius defeat a challenge to its protection of the first UNESCO World heritage site commemorating resistance against slavery. The claim brought by UK investors who sought to turn it into a luxury resort complex was fully dismissed by an ICSID tribunal.
  • Philip Morris Brands Sàrl, Philip Morris Products S.A. and Abal Hermanos S.A. v. Oriental Republic of Uruguay. We successfully represented Uruguay in a case involving claims of breaches to fair and equitable treatment, alleged indirect expropriation and denial of justice arising out of the implementation of tobacco regulations.
  • Ping An Life Insurance Company of China, Limited and Ping An Insurance (Group) Company of China, Limited v. Kingdom of Belgium. We successfully represented the Kingdom of Belgium in this ICSID arbitration filed by Chinese financial services company Ping An under the Belgium-China BIT. The tribunal held that it lacked jurisdiction ratione temporis because the dispute settlement provisions of the new treaty did not cover disputes that arose before its entry into force.

 

INTERNATIONAL COMMERCIAL ARBITRATION

  • We represent a Latin American State-owned oil company in an ICC arbitration brought against the operator of a petroleum block, and its co-concessionaires and guarantors.
  • We represent the Ministry of Infrastructure and Energy of a Balkan State in an ICC arbitration concerning the termination of a contract for the construction of a wastewater collection and treatment system.
  • We achieved a complete victory on behalf of a South Asian State agency in an ICC arbitration brought by a solar energy over the latter’s breach of a Power Purchase Agreement for the construction and operation of a solar power plant.

People

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Get to know the attorneys in our International Litigation & Arbitration practice.

Diego Cadena

International Counsel

Washington, DC

202.261.7369

Baldomero Casado

International Associate

Washington, DC

202.269.7382

Diem Huong Ho

International Associate

Washington, DC

202.223.7307

Juan Pablo Hugues

International Associate

Washington, DC

202-394-6572

Pablo Nilo Donoso

International Associate

Washington, DC

202.261.7420

Sudhanshu Roy

International Associate

Washington, DC

202.261.7345

Alberto Wray

International Counsel

Washington, DC

202.261.7340