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  1. Dispute resolution: international arbitration
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Baker McKenzie’s disputes department includes a number of partners with experience of arbitration proceedings under the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) and Singapore International Arbitration Centre (SIAC) rules, but the team is particularly active in the Thai Arbitration Institute (TAI). In 2016-2017, it has been involved in various contract disputes, insurance claims and tax issues, and has also handled a litany of enforcement matters. Timothy Breier is a US-qualified litigator with the group and focuses on bankruptcy, construction and contract disputes. Pisut Attakamol works across a range of sectors and is representing a multimedia company in defence and subsequent counterclaims concerning a failure to pay licensing fees and taxes. Kanit Vallayapet specialises in administrative disputes, while Wynn Pakdeejit and Chirachai Okanurak are also key contacts in the department. Clients have included BLCP Power, AXA Insurance and Deutsche Bank.

Of the 20 dispute resolution lawyers in Watson Farley & Williams (Thailand) Limited’s Bangkok office, 12 are internationally qualified, making it one of the largest Thai-based teams of ‘competent and qualified experts’ in international arbitration matters, ‘from partner to associate level’. The department receives regular training with London-experienced QCs and is perhaps the most active Bangkok-team in international arbitration centres throughout the region. In one recently commenced matter, Steven Burkill is representing ARS International in SIAC proceedings, worth $70m, regarding a breach of confidentiality agreement. Similarly, Burkill is involved in multiple Hong Kong International Arbitration Centre (HKIAC) claims regarding breach of contract. Kay Kian Tan, a ‘highly competent litigation expert’, is representing an energy company in an ICC arbitration case, which is governed by Chinese law, in a supply and construction dispute with a Chinese contractor. The team is also involved in obtaining recognition and enforcement in Thai courts of a Grain and Free Trade Association (GAFTA) arbitral award. Ratthakarn Boonnua as well as senior associates Lyle Andrews and Tossaporn Sumpiputtanadacha are also key contacts.

Though the Bangkok office is going through a period of regrowth, DLA Piper (Thailand) Limited remains active in arbitration proceedings in a range of forums, including ICC, SIAC, China International Economic and Trade Arbitration Commission (CIETAC) and TAI. Managing partner Peter Shelford has expertise in insurance, investment and regulatory matters, and has been involved in arbitral proceedings regarding energy pricing and construction, and has also handled enforcement matters. The department’s key clients include Diebold Nixdorf, FWD Insurance, Global Procurement Pty and Yum! Restaurants International (Thailand). Chatchai Inthasuwan retired in 2017, though the team has recruited a number of new junior-level lawyers and is investing in a period of training and organic growth. Suraphon Rittipongchusit joined Kennedys in 2017

Herbert Smith Freehills (Thailand) Limited has built a reputation in Bangkok for its formidable dispute resolution team, which is regularly involved in TAI, United Nations Commission on International Trade Law (UNCITRAL) and ICC arbitration proceedings. The department is headed by Chinnawat Thongpakdee, whose practice focuses on Thai-based disputes for international and domestic corporates; his recent work has included disputes concerning sensitive government matters, tax and customs law and contractual issues. Expanding its geographic reach, the Bangkok office regularly works alongside colleagues in the firm’s Hong Kong and Singapore offices, incorporating partners such as Alastair Henderson. The group took on two associates and of counsel, Emi Rowse; however, various practitioners have left the firm in 2016-2017, including Surapol Srangsomwong, who retired, Daniel Woods, who moved to the firm’s London office, and Gavin Margetson, who is now regional head of international arbitration at Berwin Leighton Paisner LLP.

Respondek & Fan Ltd has an active track record in ASEAN and European arbitration centres. Having qualified in the US and Germany, Andreas Respondek is the primary contact and he splits his time between the Bangkok and Singapore offices. In 2016-2017, he has been involved in arbitration proceedings in the HKIAC and ICC. The team recently filed arbitration proceedings in the ICC in Paris on behalf of an automotive systems and technology company. Similarly, Respondek is acting for a global supermarket chain in relation to damages claims against a Chinese manufacturer in an action in the HKIAC.

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