Michael has over 38 years’ experience dealing with large construction projects as counsel and latterly as Adjudicator, Arbitrator and a Deputy Judge of the Technology and Construction Court in London. He is Visiting Professor of Construction Law at Manchester University and a Fellow of both the Chartered Institution of Civil Engineering Surveyors and the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators.
He has developed expertise in all aspects of infra-structure projects particularly involving government and publicly-owned entities under EPC/Turnkey, Design & Build, EPCM, BOOT and DBO forms of contract (both bespoke and FIDIC) amongst others. He is recognised as having the experience not only to master technically complex engineering issues, but also to deal with related funder, shareholder and joint venture disputes, off-shore project finance structures, insolvency and professional liabilities. He is regularly retained by Owners, Sponsors, Contractors and Liability and Professional Indemnity Insurers alike.
Michael has longstanding and extensive experience in India and the Middle East and Dubai in particular. Not only was he the principal draftsman of the Rules of the Court of the Dubai International Financial Centre and was involved in the draughtsmanship of the Arbitration Law, but he has also acted for many prominent individuals and corporations in relation to project disputes both within the region and in arbitration and court proceedings in England, Switzerland and off-shore jurisdictions.
He is ranked as a leader in the Construction field by both the current editions of The Legal 500 and Chambers & Partners. He is said to be: “very successful, very experienced and awfully popular with clients” as well as “extremely bright, very commercial and excellent to work with” and “stupendously hard-working”. He also appears in the International Who’s Who of Construction Lawyers.
He has appeared in a number of important English cases on Construction and Arbitration Law, including – Henry Boot Construction (UK) Limited v Malmaison Hotel (Manchester) Limited, the leading authority on the calculation of extensions of time and Al-Naimi v Islamic Press, concerning the application of arbitration clauses.
Current and recent cases include:
- DIFC Court – proceedings relating to building defects, issues relating to appointment of expert by Dubai courts
- DIFC Court – enforcement of DIFC-LCIA arbitration award relating to offshore works, issues as to Managing Director’s capacity under UAE law to sign arbitration agreement
- DIFC Court – enforcement of DIAC arbitration award in the DIFC where allegations of fraud are made
- IPCO v NNPC – (Court of Appeal) enforcement of USD300m+ arbitration award concerning construction of oil terminal. Allegations of fraud under the construction contract and before tribunal
- DIAC Arbitration – (seat Dubai, UAE law) dispute concerning the construction of infrastructure works
- ICC arbitration (seat London, Japanese law) concerning fraud in bidding for projects in the Middle East
- ICC arbitration (seat London, English law) acting for Middle Eastern party in joint venture with European company in construction industry
- DIAC arbitration – (seat Dubai, UAE law) acting for Master Developer in claim by Sub-Developer in dispute concerning the construction of infra-structure, hand-over of plots and termination.
- Ad hoc arbitration – (seat London, Nigerian law) counsel for party claiming in excess of USD 7 billion in respect of the construction of gas processing and power generation facility.
- ICC arbitration – (seat DIFC, UAE law) acting for Developer in connection with construction of hotel project.
- ICC arbitration – (seat Paris, Swiss law) concerning tendering for infra-structure projects in Middle East.
- Masri v CCIC and Tayseer: Michael represnets the Qatari joint venture partner of CCIC in a multi-billion dollar project for the construction of the world’s largest gas liquefaction plant for Shell in Qatar.
- Advising the Government of the Virgin Islands on the largest public works contract it has undertaken – the construction of a large international medical facility under FIDIC terms;
- Acting for a contractor in court and in arbitration against the Government of the Cayman Islands on the largest public works contract it has undertaken – the construction of two college campuses under AIA terms;
- Advising a cable-laying contractor in its relations with a state electricity company;
- LCIA arbitration concerning delays to the completion of the Las Vegas Monorail;
- Advising on tender for public works in Jersey.
- DIFC-LCIA Arbitration – (seat DIFC, UAE law) dispute concerning the construction of district cooling works
- UNCITRAL arbitration (seat New Delhi, Indian law) arbitrator in USD 1 billion+ dispute concerning construction management services in connection with the construction of a grassroots oil refinery.
- ICC arbitration (seat Qatar, Qatari law) USD 156 million dispute relating to construction of airport.
- Ad hoc arbitration (seat New Delhi, Indian law) USD 40 million+ concerning termination of construction of hydro-electric project
- DIAC arbitration – (seat Dubai, UAE law) arbitrator in AED 180m+ dispute concerning the cancellation of a hotel project
- UNCITRAL arbitration – (seat London, Zambian law) concerning supply of electrical equipment under FIDIC terms
- ICC arbitration – (seat London, English law) concerning the production of natural gas.
- ICC arbitration – (seat London, UAE law) concerning construction of sporting facilities.
- ICC arbitration concerning the construction of a power and desalination plant in Oman;
- 3 consolidated ICC arbitrations concerning the construction of motorways and national roads in Eastern Europe under FIDIC terms;
- AD HOC (seat Mumbai, Indian law) What is said to be the largest ever domestic Indian arbitration concerning delays to the construction of an oil refinery caused by a cyclone;
- ICC arbitration concerning the construction of an oil refinery in the Caribbean;
- DIAC arbitration concerning claim for professional fees.
Michael has written extensively on Construction and Arbitration topics.