CASENOTE: Danish Polish Telecommunication Group I/S v. Telekomunikacja Polska SA [2011] IEHC 369 (6 October 2011)

Author:Mr Andrew Lenny, Claire McGrade and David O'Donohoe
Profession:Arthur Cox

In February 2011, Danish Polish Telecommunication Group I/S (the "Applicant") applied to the Irish High Court to have an arbitration award recognised and enforced in Ireland. The award was actually a Partial Award – in the amount of approximately €268 million - which has been granted in 2010 by an arbitral tribunal in Vienna against Telekomunikacja Polska SA (the "Respondent") in the context of a multi staged and ongoing arbitration. By proceedings issued in the Commercial Court of Vienna, Austria on 2nd December, 2010 ("the Austrian Proceedings"), the Respondent sought to challenge the Partial Award in accordance with the UNCITRAL Arbitration Rules and applied for it to be set aside. It was on this basis that the Respondent resisted an application to have the Partial Award recognised and enforced in Ireland. On 6 October 2011, upon application made by Arthur Cox acting on behalf of the Respondent, Ms Justice Finlay Geoghegan of the High Court granted an adjournment of the application for recognition and enforcement of the Partial Award, pending the outcome of the Austrian Proceedings. Application to recognise and enforce Article 35 Recognition and enforcement and Article 36 Grounds for refusing recognition or enforcement of the Model Law governed the issues determined on this application. The Applicant submitted the following: that each of the grounds relied upon by the Respondent pursuant to Article 36(1) were without foundation; that the Court should refuse the application for adjournment pending the determination of the Austrian Proceedings. It submitted that the expert opinions of the Respondent's Austrian lawyers, when properly analysed, did not establish reasonable or substantial grounds in favour of the Respondent succeeding to set aside the Partial Award in the Austrian proceedings; that if the High Court were to exercise its discretion to adjourn its decision on recognition and enforcement pending a determination of the Austrian Proceedings, that it should: make an order for the recognition and enforcement of part of the Partial Award; and should make an order requiring the provision of security for costs. The Respondent contended that the High Court should refuse the recognition and enforcement of the Partial Award under 36(i) and (iv) of the Model Law, or, in the...

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