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The 36 Group

Work 020 7421 8000
Fax 020 7421 8035
360 LDE
London, Singapore
The 36 Group, Charles Debattista, London, ENGLAND

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Charles Debattista

Work 020 7440 6900
The 36 Group (The 36 Group)


Charles Debattista specialises in all areas of dry shipping law and related aspects of international trade, including charterparties, bills of lading, international sale of commodities and goods, letters of credit, bank guarantees, cargo insurance, ship management contracts and ship sales. With full rights of audience before the Courts in England and Wales, Charles also has an extensive advocacy practice in arbitration hearings in the UK and abroad: he also regularly sits as an Arbitrator. His international arbitration practice started in 2002, since when he has either appeared or been an arbitrator in well over 200 arbitration references, in this country and abroad. Widely published, he has been closely associated with many of the main instruments used in shipping and trade law. He acts as Counsel in shipping and commodity disputes conducted under LMAA, ICC, LCIA, SCMA arbitrations or ad hoc arbitrations. Where legal representation is agreed between the parties, Charles is also particularly well-placed to appear as Counsel before Gafta and Fosfa Boards and tribunals, having spent twelve years appearing as trade representative before tribunals sitting within those institutions.


Joined Stone Chambers in October 2004 as an associate member and arbitrator. Accepted an invitation to become a full member of Chambers in 2013. Qualified as an advocate in Malta (1978), he is a Registered European Lawyer with the Bar of England and Wales with rights of audience before the courts in conjunction with other members of the Bar. Taught at the University of Southampton, where he was Professor of Commercial Law until 2011. He has written many books and articles on his area of expertise, most recently ‘Bills of Lading in Export Trade’ (2009, Tottel). Charles’s works have been cited in a number of Court decisions; examples are: in the House of Lords in The Rafaela S [2005] 2 AC 423 and in The Starsin [2003] 1 All ER (Comm) 625; and in the Court of Appeal in Singapore in Uco Bank v Golden Shore Transportation [2005] SGCA 42.


English, Italian, Maltese.


Chartered Institute of Arbitrators; London Maritime Arbitrators’ Association; British Maritime Law Association; Singapore Chamber for Maritime Arbitration, Banking Commission and Transport and Logistics Commission of the International Chambers of Commerce; The Baltic Exchange.


Leighton Park School, Reading; Royal University of Malta (1977 LLD); St Edmund Hall, Oxford (1979 BA Hons Juris; 1983 MA; Rhodes Scholar and Open Scholar).

London Bar


Within: Commodities – Leading juniors

Charles Debattista - The 36 GroupKnown as "Mr. International Trade", he is a star junior who would be recommended among any group at any set.

Within: Commodities

In June 2018, the former members of Stone Chambers, which in 2016 became part of St Philips Stone, joined the The 36 Group to create "36 Stone". Vasanti Selvaratnam QC is the set’s only silk handling commodities cases, but Charles Debattista is a leading junior in this field, and in Thunderbird v Wellgrain he handled a complex case arising from soybean shipments.

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Within: Shipping – Leading juniors

Charles Debattista - The 36 GroupHas a wealth of experience.

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