Kuwait wins case against foreign consortium seeking compensation

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KUWAIT CITY, Jan 15,: The Fatwa and Legislation Department on Sunday declared that a verdict in favor of Kuwait had been issued regarding the international arbitration presented by a consortium of Italian and Spanish companies. The consortium is a party of the contract for construction and maintenance of Jamal Abdulnasser Street, against the Kuwaiti Government, represented by the Ministry of Public Works in front of the international arbitration center for settling investment disputes — affiliated to the World Bank.

The Kuwaiti legislation department said in a statement that the consortium sought a compensation totaling USD 264 million for purported violations on part of the State of Kuwait, namely alleged irregular fees, as these companies claim, in addition to interests and arbitration costs. Moreover, the consortium claims that the State of Kuwait breached a number of terms in the bilateral agreements with Italy and Spain on protecting and encouraging investments.

The Fatwa Department also said in a statement that Kuwait challenged the claims, noting that the arbitration authority was not specialized in cross-examining disputes because it was related to a commercial contract and not investments in the sense that places it under the category of protection as enshrined in international conventions. Kuwait had also challenged the capacity of the litigants, and responded in details to their claims for compensations The case had dragged on for six years, during which the two parties exchanged lines of defense, documents and proofs where the Kuwaiti legal team succeeded in persuading the arbitrators that the other party had no right to ask for compensation. (KUNA)

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