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Jurisdiction and the QFC Courts: Breaking New Ground in Qatar

News & Judgments
8 March 2022

Paul Fisher successfully acts for BVI-registered entity in watershed jurisdiction judgment.

The QFC Civil and Commercial Court has accepted jurisdiction to determine a shareholder dispute between a company registered in the BVI, Amberberg Limited (“Amberberg”) and individual former shareholders in a QFC-registered entity. It did so pursuant to a jurisdiction clause within a shareholder agreement signed by all parties, which identified the QFC Court as the court of choice for any dispute arising from the shareholder agreement. The QFC Court described the argument upon which Amberberg succeeded as one that “could properly be regarded as novel”. This is the first time that the QFC Court has recognised jurisdiction solely pursuant to Rule 9.2 of the QFC Rules, which states that the Court “will take into account the expressed accord of the parties that the Court shall have jurisdiction”. The implication of the judgment is that choice of court clauses electing the QFC Courts may in and of themselves be a ground for establishing jurisdiction. Paul Fisher successfully acted for Amberberg, instructed by Alex Whyatt of Eversheds Sutherland, Doha.

The judgment can be read in full here.

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