Hamid Gharavi is at the “top of the field” say market commentators, who describe him as “a very sharp and creative lawyer with a true understanding of and vision for the arbitration world”.
Dr Hamid Gharavi is a founding partner of Derains & Gharavi.
Dr Hamid Gharavi has acted as arbitrator or counsel in over 200 ad hoc and institutional arbitrations, including commercial and over 30 investment arbitrations under foreign investment laws and bilateral and multilateral treaties, in relation to a broad spectrum of issues ranging from sanctions to political takings, and industries, ranging from oil and gas, mining, M&A, military ordnance and defence, telecommunications, media, and aviation, to agency, distribution, sales, construction (including all types of design contracts and engineering projects), poultry, duty free, hospitality, real estate, wood and derived products, pharmaceuticals, and sports, including commercial, disciplinary sanctions and doping.
Dr Gharavi has secured as counsel landmark victories both for investors and sovereign states, including the first award ever of moral damages in favour of an investor under a BIT (DLP v Yemen, ICSID case no. ARB/05/17), an award in favour of an investor finding public tender results to be in violation of a BIT (Joseph Charles Lemire v Ukraine, ICSID case no. ARB/06/18), three ICSID Awards for investors against Kazakhstan, including two awards in favour of Turkish entities for deprivation of their shares by the host state’s judiciary for the benefit of a third private party (Rumeli/Telsim v Kazakhstan, ICSID case no. ARB/05/16 and Aktau Petrol Ticaret AŞ v Kazakhstan, ICSID case no. ARB/15/8) and a third for a US investor for political taking by Kazakhstan (Caratube International Oil Company LLP and Mr Devincci Salah Hourani v Kazakhstan, ICSID case no. ARB/13/13), an award in favour of a French investor ordering for the first time specific performance (Mr Franck Charles Arif v Republic of Moldova, ICSID case no. ARB/11/23), a decision on jurisdiction for Sudan finding for the first time ever that a foreign nationality of the investor was secured by fraud and thus ineffective (Michael Dagher v Sudan, ICSID case no. ARB/14/2), an award in favour of Iranian investors against the Republic of Korea for US$68 million holding that a governmental organ abused its sovereign capacity in intervening in the closure of the acquisition of a state asset, and this moreover on the pretextual grounds, whereas the underlying reasons were due to a shift of the Republic of Korea’s policy towards Iran (Mohammad Reza Dayyani, et al v The Republic of Korea, PCA case no. 2015-38), an award on jurisdiction in favour of the Republic of Turkey dismissing the largest ICSID claim ever (US$19 billion) against a sovereign state (Saba Fakes v Republic of Turkey, ICSID case no. ARB/07/20), and three awards for the Republic of Albania, the first dismissing for the first time ever a case based on a fork-in-the-road provision of a BIT (Pantechniki SA Contractors and Engineers v Republic of Albania, ICSID case no. ARB/07/21), the second dismissing the entire claim for lack of jurisdiction ratione materiae and personae, with full legal and arbitration costs (Burimi Srl and Eagle Games Sha v Republic of Albania, ICSID case no. ARB/11/18) and the third dismissing claims on the ground that the state measures were legitimate public measure safeguards compliant procedurally and substantively under international law (Mamidoil Jetoil Greek Petroleum Products Société Anonyme SA v Republic of Albania, ICSID case no. ARB/11/24).
Dr Gharavi has had a comparable success in commercial cases as counsel for claimants or respondents, and similarly balanced appointments as counsel or arbitrator by investors and businessmen or commercial companies and sovereign states or public entities thereof as counsel or arbitrator in commercial and investment cases.
He has been appointed to the panel of ICSID arbitrators, to the Court of the Istanbul Arbitration Centre, to the Court of the LCIA (from 2008 to 2012), the commission on arbitration of the ICC, as the president of the board of the Tehran Regional Arbitration Centre, as well as to other panels, including DIAC, SIAC and the Court of Arbitration for Sport.
Dr Gharavi teaches investment arbitration in the master’s programme “Droit international économique” at the University of Paris II Panthéon – Assas. He is the author of a book entitled The International Effectiveness of the Annulment of an Arbitral Award, published by Kluwer Law International, and publications in all the main arbitration law reviews, and a regular speaker at conferences.
Dr Gharavi holds a PhD from the University of Paris II, and postgraduate degrees from New York University school of law and University of Paris I Panthéon – Sorbonne.