Our lawyers are specialized in the following areas of practice:
Arbitration is a process in which parties call upon a neutral, independent third party (the arbitrator) in order to obtain a binding decision for their dispute. Parties chose their ‘private judge’ because of his/her expertise. The parties can determine the process of arbitration, which is principally confidential.
An arbitral procedure can have significant advantages in comparison to a classic litigation procedure.
Our firm is a market leader in national and international arbitration. Our associates frequently act as arbitrator in a variety of ad hoc arbitrations or arbitrations conducted within institutions, and lecture these subjects in universities.
Our firm often represents multinational enterprises in international commercial arbitration procedures. It is not exceptional that the inlay contains millions of euros. The biggest case in which our firm has represented to date concerned an action of over 1.5 billion euros.
Aside from this, the firm has acted in annulation proceedings (concerning the annulation of arbitral decisions) and enforcement proceedings (concerning recognition and execution of arbitral decisions).
Considering the increased involvement of States in international investment arbitration, our firm often represents States and emanations thereof.
Our firm has mainly worked in the following sectors: Transport, Real Estate, Investments, Mining, Energy, Diamond, Maritime, Construction, Distribution and Telecom.
Our success can be illustrated by the prices our team has won, such as: “Best Alternative Dispute Resolution Law Firm – Belgium” (2015 M&A Awards); “Dispute Resolution Law Firm of the Year in Belgium” (GLE 2015 Annual Awards); “Cross-Border Disputes Lawyer of the Year – Belgium” (2015 International M&A Awards); ”Alternative Dispute Resolutions firm of the Year – Belgium” (2015 Corporate Livewire – M&A Awards); “Dispute Resolution Law Firm of the Year in Belgium 2015” (Corporate Intl Magazine Legal Award); “Best in International Arbitration – Belgium 2014” (Acquisition International Legal Awards); “Dispute Resolution Law Firm of the Year in Belgium 2014” (Global Law Experts – GLE); “Client Choice – Dispute Resolution Law Award in Belgium 2014 (Legal Finest 200 Awards).
Our firm frequently acts in complex cases. Clients count on the long experience and the fact that our associates are familiar with different perspectives of law, on and behind the scenes.
We represent clients in a variety of judicial procedures for instance: seizure procedures, highly urgent procedures (interim proceedings), prohibitory injunctions, etc.
The academic involvement of our associates guarantees the required knowledge and insights to promote your interests in an efficient and adequate way.
In addition, our firm is a pioneer in collective redress, ranging from collective interest actions and group actions to class actions. Our associates have published articles in these areas.
The excellence of our firm is illustrated by the prizes recently won by our team, for example: “Boutique Law Firm of 2014 – Belgium” (The M&A Awards); “Dispute Resolution Law Firm of the Year in Belgium” (GLE 2015 Annual Awards); “Cross – Border Disputes Lawyer of the Year – Belgium” (Corporate Intl Magazine Legal Award); “Dispute resolution Law Firm of the Year in Belgium 2014” (Global Law Experts – Gle); Client Choice – Dispute Resolution Law Award in Belgium 2014” (Legal Finest 200 Awards).
Our firm frequently acts in franchise, commercial agency and other forms of distribution agreements. Several of our associates are active within the Belgian Franchise Federation.
With accurate advisory services, assistance in judicial procedures, conciliation, mediation & arbitration, our firm has contributed to many commercial successes of franchisees and franchisors. Besides that, our firm has helped in founding different distribution networks and restructuring them.
Regarding distribution & franchising, our firm has mainly been active in the following sectors: automobile, nutrition, food service industry, cosmetics, retail, real estate and travelling.
Our firm also provides legal support in relation to the transport and logistics component. Our firm had the opportunity to leave its mark on various interventions of the European Commission against Member States who failed to comply with EU regulations.The excellence of our firm is illustrated by various prizes won by our team. For example “Franchise Law Firm of the Year in Belgium 2014” (Corporate Intl Magazine Global Award) and “Franchise Law Firm of the Year in Belgium 2014” (Global Law Experts – GLE)
Conflict mediation is a process in which a neutral and independent third party (the mediator) assists the parties in finding the best solution for their conflict. The parties hold their fate in their own hands and the mediator doesn’t impose any decision. A skilled mediator succeeds in letting the parties tell their story, help to understand each other’s interests and generate new values and creative options. The mediator then helps the parties to efficiently negotiate their options, so as to enhance the chances of finding the most adequate solution at the end of the mediation process.
Our firm is a market leader in commercial mediation. Our associates frequently act as certified mediators and lecture in this subject matter for different trainings. They stand close towards the mediation policy and the development of new regulations concerning mediation.
In regards to mediation, the firm mainly acted in the following sectors: Transport, Real Estate, Energy, Construction, Distribution and Telecom.
The excellence of our team can be illustrated by the following prices and awards: “Best Alternative Dispute Resolution Law Firm – Belgium” (2015 M&A Awards); “Dispute Resolution Law Firm of the Year in Belgium” (GLE 2015 Annual Awards); “Cross-Border Disputes Lawyer of the Year – Belgium” (2015 International M&A Awards); ”Alternative Dispute Resolutions firm of the Year – Belgium” (2015 Corporate Livewire – M&A Awards); “Dispute Resolution Law Firm of the Year in Belgium 2015” (Corporate Intl Magazine Legal Award); “Best in International Arbitration – Belgium 2014” (Acquisition International Legal Awards); “Dispute Resolution Law Firm of the Year in Belgium 2014” (Global Law Experts – GLE); “Client Choice – Dispute Resolution Law Award in Belgium 2014 (Legal Finest 200 Awards).
Are you thinking of starting a new company/business (start up)? The associates of our firm have the needed specialization on which you can rely.
We assist our clients in various sectors, ranging from due diligence & advisory services to representation in judicial procedures.
We also assist our clients in drafting contracts, the revision of contracts, the modification of contracts and the execution of contracts.
The excellence of our firm is illustrated by various prizes, for example: “Boutique Law Firm of 2014” (The M&A Awards); “Franchise Law Firm of the Year in Belgium 2014” (Corporate Intl Magazine Global Award) and “Franchise Law Firm of the Year in Belgium 2014” (Global Law Experts – GLE).
Do you have questions about take-over, merger, bankruptcy, liquidation, the continuity of your enterprise, the possible restructuring of your enterprise etc.? Our team of lawyers, bankruptcy curators, liquidators and financial analysts is at your service. We assist both enterprises and natural persons who stand before commercial and financial challenges / opportunities.
This department is headed by Dr Konstantinos Adamantopoulos. Below is an overview of most recent interventions in Trade & EU-related fields.
ANTITRUST, DOMINANCE, ABUSES & COMPLIANCE
- Representing a telecoms company in an antitrust complaint before the European Commission.
- Advising and representing a major energy intensive industrial producer on electricity pricing practices of a dominant incumbent electricity supplier.
- Advising a member of the international barcode trade association in litigation proceedings before the national courts against the trade association, following its expulsion from membership of the association, in potential breach of EU and national competition rules.
- Successfully defending an international sports federation against abuse of dominance allegations relating to the acquisition of media rights to sports broadcasting events in the framework of international arbitration procedures.
- Advising and representing a major pharmaceutical company in connection with the European Commission's "pay for delay" antitrust investigation concerning Servier / perindopril.
- Successfully advising a major telecommunications provider on EU Competition and regulatory issues, defending it against complaints and delivering a full compliance programme for its management and sales staff.
- Representing a major international film distributor in national antitrust procedures.
- Representing a major Asian air carrier in the framework of the European Commission antitrust investigation into airline surcharges.
- Advising and representing a major international logistics company in the framework of the European Commission antitrust investigation into freight forwarders' surcharge policies.
- Advising a major international airline in a major self assessment exercise on compliance under EU antitrust rules of its joint venture with a competing airline.
- Providing EU antitrust compliance training to a major multinational container shipping company and two telecommunication operators.
- Representing a major Italian media group in a substantial State aid dispute before the EU General Court and, on appeal, the European Court of Justice.
- Advising several regional development agencies in various projects that involve diverse State aid advice, such as environmental, regional, rescue & restructuring, R & D and other types and specific forms of aid.
- We have been regularly called upon to advise major financial institutions and Governments regarding State aid during the financial crisis.
- Drafting an EU Member State's national legislation with regard to temporary State aid support to its banking sector in an attempt to deal with the financial crisis.
- Advising Hellas Gold S.A. in an in depth "Phase II" State aid investigation of the European Commission alleging the acquisition of certain assets below market value and representing this company before the EU General Court.
- Representing OTE, the major reek telecoms operator, in EU State aids procedures concerning the State funding €400 million of the total cost of OTE's Voluntary Retirement Scheme of €1.5 billion; and securing State aid clearance by the European Commission in this matter.
- Representing the Greek Government in an in depth EU State aids investigation concerning Hellenic Shipyards. We ensured that the State aids recovery order would not be enforced against the military assets of the shipyard that are exempt from the application of EU law.
- Advising and representing the Greek Government in landmark notification procedures and achieving clearance of a scheme in relation to the reform of the Greek pension system in the financial sector to bring it in line with International Accounting Standards.
- Advising a major international industry association on the applicability of State aid rules in the air transport sector with particular emphasis on the operation, by certain EU airports, of certain allegedly "discriminatory" charging patterns and policies financed by regional governments.
- Advising several airlines on compliance with the EU Aviation Emission Trading Scheme.
- Advising and representing a major EU energy intensive industrial producer in European Commission procedures concerning the price of electricity charged by the incumbent electricity producer. This case also involved the assessment of an independent arbitration award on electricity pricing under the EU State aids rules.
- Representing a major international port operator in EU State aids procedures concerning tax advantages allegedly granted by an EU Member State in the framework of a concession agreement.
- Successfully advising and representing a major international port operator in EU State aids procedures relating to a post-award amendment of its concession agreement with the Government of an EU Member State.
- Advising private electricity producers on EU State aids procedures relating to capacity adequacy mechanisms.
- Advising a major EU cement producers association in procedures for the exemption of the sector from the EU Emission Trading Mechanism.
- Advising a major Asian airline on EU merger control rules and national jurisdictional thresholds;
- Successfully representing a third party in merger proceedings between two major electronic communication undertakings;
- Advising a multinational infrastructure operator on applicable EU and EU Member State merger control rules in the course of an acquisition of a major infrastructure operator in the EU;
- Representing a third party in EU merger control proceedings regrinding a merger in the oil and gas industry in the Northern North Sea.
- Representing a major international airline in EU merger control proceedings concerning the acquisition of another international airline with substantial operations in the EU.
- Representing a third party in merger control proceedings concerning the acquisition of Olympic Airways by Aegean Airlines.
- Specialist plastic membrane manufacturer: Advising a major multinational specialized chemicals manufacturer on exports of outdoors protective garments capable of suppressing thermal signature to several third countries under the EU dual use goods regulations.
- International battery producer: Advising an international battery producer in customs proceedings alleging the export of dual-use goods without prior export classification. The case involved complex legal issues relating to exhaustion of jurisdiction when dual-use goods are transferred between Member States and undergo working and processing before being exported. The case was settled with the authorities in Germany and Italy.
- Export of dual use goods to embargo countries: Advising a client on compliance with EU and German export controls laws in relation to exporting aeronautics goods to and providing technical assistance for goods located in an embargo country.
- Export of certain car paints: Advising an international company on the EU and national export control rules governing the export of certain car paints to a military in the Middle East. The focus of the advice was on EU and national export control rules for military and dual-use goods as well as embargos and denied persons.
- Export of certain coatings for airplanes: Advising an international company on the EU and national export control rules governing the export of certain coatings for airplanes to an Indian aeroplane manufacturer.
- Compliance programmes and self assessment: Devising and conducting several export controls compliance programmes for major international corporations, including a major international industrial battery manufacturer. Advising several multinational corporate clients on the merits of proceeding with voluntary reports to relevant authorities to achieve legal certainty and clarification of "grey product definition areas".
- Due Diligence: Advising two major private equity funds in the context of their proposed acquisitions and performing due diligence on acquisition targets in the oil and IT sectors to establish these targets' compliance under EU and relevant national export controls and sanctions laws.
- EU Ivory Coast Sanctions: Advising a major international commodities trader regarding compliance with the EU Sanctions Regime applicable against Ivory Coast at the time.
- EU Iran Sanctions: Advising a major international shipping company regarding the application of the EU Iran Sanctions Regulations to this company's insurance and reinsurance contracts.
- EU Iran Sanctions: Advising a major EU oil refining company on compliance with EU Iran sanctions of payments to an Iranian crude oil supplier.
- EU Litigation: Successfully representing a Singaporean Shipping Company before EU Courts in a legal challenge of this company's listing under the EU Iran sanctions.
- EU Sanctions and Sports: Advising a major international sport association with regard to the listing of a football club under EU sanctions regulations applicable against Belarus and on the scope of the "cultural exemption" of the Treaty for the Functioning of the EU.
- Termination of the EU anti-dumping duties against large industrial scanners originating in China;
- A zero EU anti-dumping duty for an Indian stainless steel producer and the smallest EU dumping duty for another Indian stainless steel produce;
- Leading counsel in the landmark Zhenjiang Xinanchem EU Court of Justice case which resulted in the annulment of EU antidumping duties on a major Chinese origin fertiliser;
- Representation of two major Indian and Taiwanese producers of CD-Rs in an interim review that resulted in the repeal of the EU anti-dumping measures on CD-Rs from Taiwan and the anti-subsidy measures on CD-Rs from India;
- Termination of the EU anti-dumping investigation into colour television picture tubes from China;
- Termination of the EU antidumping duties on large electrolytic aluminium electrolytic capacitors from Japan and the USA; and
- EU General Court annulment of EU antidumping and countervailing duties on stainless steel bright bars from India.
- The termination of three EU anti-subsidy investigations against bicycles; certain plastic fibres; and stainless steel products respectively from China (2013-2015) – a series of unprecedented terminations of EU anti-subsidy investigations against China – in which KA-Legal Partner Dr. Adamantopoulos was the leading counsel for the Ministry of Commerce of the People's Republic of China;
- The representation of Third Parties in the WTO Panel and Appellate Body Dispute Settlement Proceedings concerning EU and US Measures Affecting Trade in Large Civil Aircraft (the famous Airbus – Boeing disputes);
- Successfully representing several Indian producers in Mukand et al., proceedings before the EU General Court for the annulment of EU countervailing duties imposed on imports of Indian stainless steel bright bars.
- Advising a WTO Member Government in the handling of textiles and clothing disputes with the EU following the withdrawal of quotas on EU imports of such products; and
- Advising the Indian Government regarding safeguard measures adopted by the EU against imports of basic steel products such as hot rolled coils and quarto plates.
- Representing Jinko Solar Inc. in litigation concerning the EU's solar anti-dumping investigation;
- Representing a Chinese exporter in the landmark judgement before the European Court of Justice in Case C-337/09 P, Zhejiang Xinan Chemical Industrial Group v Council, which secured the annulment of EU anti-dumping measures on the grounds that State control of a company cannot be the sole reason to deny its MET application; and
- Representing Indian exporters in the landmark judgement before the European Court of First Instance in Case T-58/99, Mukand v Council, which secured the first-ever annulment of EU anti-subsidy measures, on the grounds of unproven injury due to anti-competitive conduct by the Union industry.
- Legal advice to a WTO Member Government on the WTO-compatibility of EU actions in the framework of the EU's anti-dumping and anti-subsidy investigations into solar panels (crystalline silicon photovoltaic modules and key components) originating in or consigned from China;
- Representation of the Government of South Korea in the Panel and Appellate Body proceedings in the Airbus/Boeing EU-US dispute before the WTO’s Dispute Settlement Body;
- Successfully advising the Government of India in Dispute Settlement Consultations with the EU against the continuing imposition of EU anti-dumping duties against hot-rolled coils from India;
- European Communities – Measures Affecting Trade in Large Civil Aircraft (WT/DS316);
- United States – Measures Affecting Trade in Large Civil Aircraft (WT/DS353);
- Legal advice to the Government of India regarding the workings of the WTO Dispute Settlement Mechanism and compliance of certain anti-dumping and anti-subsidy measures adopted by the EU with WTO legal requirements with a view to initiating WTO dispute settlement procedures regarding stainless steel bars, stainless steel wires and quarto steel plates;
- Advice to a WTO Member Government in the framework of the controversial EU anti-dumping proceeding concerning certain footwear with leather uppers originating in China and Vietnam;
- Advice to the Ukrainian Government in relation to a dispute settlement procedure between the Ukraine and the EU regarding the Ukraine's investment laws in the car manufacturing sector and the relevant Ukrainian State subsidies in that sector. The work involved substantial advice concerning the interpretation of the EU-Ukraine Partnership and Cooperation Agreement, as well as several Articles of the GATT, the WTO Agreement on Subsidies and Countervailing Measures, the WTO Customs Valuation Agreement, the WTO Agreement on Safeguards, and the WTO Dispute Settlement Understanding;
- Legal advice regarding the locus standi of a South-East Asian Government under the WTO Dispute Settlement Mechanism in the framework of a potential WTO complaint against an EU anti-dumping regulation; and
- Advice to Governments of certain WTO Members regarding the compliance of non-market economy status with WTO law.
- Assisting a non WTO Member in its accession negotiations to the WTO over a period of 10 years;
- Advising a WTO Member Government on certain EU anti-dumping investigations and the impact of the reform of EU trade remedy laws in light of the impending recognition of China as a Market Economy Country;
- Advising a WTO Member Government in GATT Article XXIV:6 negotiations with the EU following the EU's enlargement;
- Advising a WTO Member Government on several aspects (anti-dumping, anti-subsidy and safeguards) of the Rules Negotiations in the WTO Doha Round negotiations; and
- Training WTO Member Government officials on how to conduct anti-dumping, anti-subsidy and safeguard investigations.
- Advising a major multinational corporation on public procurement procedures in the gambling and gaming sectors.
- Advising on compliance under EU media and State aids laws of the operation of a public service broadcaster in an EU Member State.
- Advising Governments in drafting legislation in compliance with the EU rules to protect companies of major importance in strategic sectors of national economies.
- Advising on all aspects of regulation in the electronic communications sector.
- Advising various companies, including potential investors, on all aspects of gaming legislation to ensure compliance with EU internal market legislation- monitoring key developments in the EU and EU litigation cases in relation to the regulation of games of chance at EU/national level.
- Advising a major Greek corporate entity on aspects of the privatization of a major Casino in Greece. The advice included a further analysis of the EU State aid, public procurement and EU internal market rules.
- Advising a major corporate on the tax treatment of online gambling in Greece.
- Successfully advising a major EU telecoms operator on the disposal of a majority interest on a telecoms satelite under EU public procurement rules.
- Successfully advising a major EU airport operator on the application of EU public procurement rues to proposed amendments of its concession arrangements.
- Representing Hellas Gold SA and European Goldfields Limited in a major State aid procedure before the EU General Court in Luxembourg against the European Commission's decision in relation to alleged State aid as a result of a below market value sale in the mining sector in Greece.
- Representing Chinese exporters before the European Court Justice against a European Commission appeal regarding the imposition of EU anti-dumping duties on Chinese herbicide glyphosate. This is has been a landmark case that influenced the trade relations between China and the EU.
- Representing a major media group in Italy before the European Courts in State aid litigation proceedings regarding alleged aid for the purchase of digital decoders.
- Advising a major international sports association in an arbitration with a media company, where abuse of a dominant position affecting the licensing of TV broadcasting rights was alleged.
- Representing a tobacco processing company in litigation before the national and EU Courts.
- Represented the European Commission and the European Investment Bank in public procurement litigation before the European Courts.
- Representing a major Russian client in an action for damages before the European Courts alleging illegal imposition of anti-dumping duties whilst a cartel was operating in Europe.
- Successfully representing several Indian stainless steel manufacturers before the EU General Court in challenging the legality of EU antidumping and countervailing duties imposed on EU imports of Indian stainless steel bars.
- Representing a major Greek ferry company before the EU general Court and European Court of Justice in the famous "Greek Ferries carte" case.