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Baker McKenzie S.A.S.

Work +57 1 634 1500

Claudia Benavides Galvís

Work +571 6341563
Baker McKenzie LLP

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Energy and natural resources

Within: Energy and natural resources

With a tradition of involvement in all aspects of the oil and gas sector, Baker McKenzie S.A.S.’s experience in power generation projects has also been growing lately, with the team undertaking various wind, solar, biomass and electricity transmission projects. On the development front, the practice advised Oak Creek Energy, Voltalia, SC Solar and SPV Villanueva on new power generation projects. Alejandro Mesa heads the nine-strong team with partners Claudia Benavides, Ciro Meza and AndrĂ©s Crump attending to relevant contentious, transactional, and private equity activity and tax matters, respectively. Recent matters included advising MAC Johnson Controls on the negotiation, finalisation and execution of an amendment to its existing natural gas supply agreement with Gas Natural. In mining, the team assisted Texas Mining and Associates with the acquisition of one of the most important emerald projects in the country, comprising several mines in the municipalities of Quipama and Muzo. The practice also advised a number of well-known international extractive companies in environmental due diligence and compliance matters. Clients include Trafigura, Schlumberger, ONGC Videsh, Petrobras, Brookfield and Talis Capital.

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Colombia: Dispute resolution


Within: Arbitration

‘Strongly recommended’, Baker McKenzie S.A.S. has a broad sector offering including international arbitration and multi-jurisdictional claims. Recently appointed global practice group chair Claudia Benavides is ‘a strong litigator with a solid reputation who can design effective strategies to advance the interests of her clients’. She heads a 14-strong practice, which has been growing its participation in construction disputes relating to large infrastructure projects, such as the one it is undertaking for a state-owned utility facing a claim from the subcontracted consortium responsible for the construction of an infrastructure project that has suffered delays. Other mandates included representing a major US multinational in international arbitration seated in Bogotá; the dispute concerns a breach of a joint operating agreement. Cristina Mejía and disputes director Juan Guillermo Otero are also noted, but former senior associate Jorge Valencia moved in house as head of litigation at Cenit Transporte y Logística de Hidrocarburos.

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Within: Leading individuals

Claudia Benavides - Baker McKenzie S.A.S.

Within: Litigation

Led by Claudia Benavides, who was recently named chair of the firm’s global practice group, Baker McKenzie S.A.S.’s Bogotá-based team has a ‘strong reputation in the market’ and ‘shines thanks to its professionalism, expertise and responsiveness’. Cristina Mejía and associates Juan Guillermo Otero and Jorge Valencia are also key members of the 14-strong group, which successfully defended Parsons Group on both legal and technical grounds against alleged responsibility for damages at a power plant; a favourable first instance ruling was confirmed on appeal, with the plaintiffs held responsible for all the defendant's costs and legal expenses. The team is currently representing leading broadcaster Caracol in a $20m lawsuit filed by local retail company Madis de Colombia regarding the alleged publication of untrue facts about Madis. Other clients include Embraer, China United Engineering Corporation, Louis Berger Group and Shell.

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Latin America: International firms

International arbitration

Within: International arbitration

Clients single out Baker McKenzie LLP for the 'very global nature of the firm, with its fully integrated offices around the world which provides just the right capabilities for multi-jurisdictional disputes'. The team, led by Bogota-based Claudia Benavides, focuses on commercial, energy and construction arbitration, and has impressive footprint covering seven Latin American jurisdictions. Current highlights include representing a consortium of multinational petroleum companies in an arbitration against Brazil's National Agency for Petroleum regarding the Lula oil reservoir, and representing a large engineering company in a dispute arising from an EPC contract of a power plant in Colombia. Grant Hanessian and Joaquim Muniz stand out for their 'wide experience in the field, solid legal knowledge and client-focus approach'. Maria del Carmen Tovar and Rodrigo Diaz de Valdes are also names to note.

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Legal Developments by:
Baker McKenzie LLP

  • The New Turkish Code of Obligations: Important Changes for Leases of Residential & Business Premises

    For decades, the primary Turkish laws governing leases of residential and business premises have been the Law on Leasing Real Property dated May 27, 1955 (the “Lease Law”) and the Turkish Code of Obligations No. 818 dated April 22, 1926 (the “Obligations Code”). Both of these laws, however, will be repealed and replaced with the new Turkish Code of Obligations No. 6098 dated January 11, 2011 (the “New Obligations Code”), which will enter into force on July 7, 2012.
    - Esin Attorney Partnership

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