Derains & Gharavi International


March 2018

Décima Conferencia Latinoamericana de Arbitraje

Yves Derains will speak at the 2018 CLA conference (Décima Conferencia Latinoamericana de Arbitraje) on the topic of “La profesionalización de los árbitros”. The conference will take place on 31 May and 1 June 2018 in Cuzco (Peru).

Protegiendo la integridad del Arbitraje

Yves Derains will speak on “Como conducir eficazmente un arbitraje internacional” at the ICC conference “Protegiendo la integridad del Arbitraje” that will be held in Cuzco (Peru) on 30 May 2018.

Primera Conferencia Conjunta ITA-ALARB sobre Arbitraje Internacional

Yves Derains will speak at the “Primera Conferencia Conjunta ITA-ALARB sobre Arbitraje Internacional” organised by the Institute for Transnational Arbitration (ITA) and the Asociación Latinoamerícana de Arbtiraje (ALARB) and dedicated to “Arbitraje sobre Conflictos de Recursos Naturales” on 3 and 4 May 2018 in Santiago (Chile).

Melanie van Leeuwen chosen to chair an ICSID Arbitration Tribunal

Melanie van Leeuwen has been chosen to chair the Tribunal in an ICSID arbitration dispute between US investors and the Republic of Armenia. This nomination has been reported in two articles.

Article published in Investment Arbitration Reporter on 16 March 2018:

A tribunal has been constituted to hear an ICSID arbitration brought by Edmond Khudyan and Arin Capital & Investment Corp against the Republic of Armenia.

The tribunal was finalized on March 16 2018 with the appointment of Melanie Van Leeuwen by the parties. Ms. Van Leeuwen is a partner at Derains & Gharavi in Paris and was previously tapped by Horthel Systems Tesa Beheer BV and Poland Gaming Holding BV to sit as the claimants’ nominee in a BIT claim against Poland.

Ank Santens of White & Case was earlier appointed by the claimants and Armenia nominated Zachary Douglas.

As we reported, the dispute relates to the US claimants’ investment in a luxury real estate project. The claimants contend Armenian authorities did nothing to come to their assistance after they were defrauded by their local partners.

We reported that, due to the relatively small size of their claim ($10-15 million) the investors initially proposed that a sole arbitrator should hear the case. However, it appears that Armenia has not agreed to that proposal.

The claimants are represented by Hughes, Hubbard & Reed. Armenia has retained CMS Hasche Sigle in Munich and Hong Kong, and Concern Dialog Law Firm in Yerevan“.

Article published in GAR on 26 March 2018 (extracts):

The latest round of panels formed at ICSID has seen first-time appointments for Melanie van Leeuwen of Derains & Gharavi, Ank Santens of White & Case, Brazil’s Eduardo Damião Gonçalves and five others, while beleaguered Bulgarian arbitrator Stanimir Alexandrov has received six appointments.

Since GAR’s last tribunal round-up in January, new panels have been formed in 23 cases. These include 14 new claims against countries including Armenia, Croatia, Egypt, Kazakhstan, Mexico, Romania, Saudia Arabia, Spain, Tanzania and Uzbekistan. Four annulment committees have been formed while five tribunals have been reconstituted following the resignation of an arbitrator (in one case, an arbitrator rejoined the panel after having resigned from it).

First-timers van Leeuwen and Santens are sitting together on a tribunal that will hear a US$15 million claim against Armenia brought by US businessman Edmond Khudyan and his California company Arin Capital. The case concerns the state’s alleged failure to act on allegations that Khudyan was defrauded by his business partner in a bankrupt real estate venture.

A Dutch national based in Paris, van Leeuwen is chairing the tribunal while Santens, a Belgian-based practitioner in New York, has been appointed by the claimants. Armenia has nominated Australian Zachary Douglas QC of Matrix Chambers in Geneva.


Edmond Khudyan and Arin Capital & Investment Corp v Republic of Armenia (ICSID Case No. ARB/17/36)
Date constituted: 15 March
• Melanie van Leeuwen (Netherlands) (appointed by the parties)
• Ank Santens (Belgium) (appointed by the claimants)
• Zachary Douglas QC (Australia) (appointed by Armenia)


Yves Derains will be the keynote speaker of the XI Conferencia de Arbitraje Internacional organized by the CAM-AMCHAM, the Instituto Ecuatoriano de Arbitraje and the University of San Francisco of Quito, in Quito on 22-23 March 2018.