King & Spalding LLP’s practice in Algeria focuses primarily on advising large multinationals on high-value projects and transactions, with a strong focus on the country’s oil and gas industry. Mehdi Haroun, the head of the practice, is Algerian-qualified and has extensive experience of the social, political, and economic environment of the country, which he brings to bear in both transactional work and in litigation. Associate Nora Djeraba, a dual French-Algerian national, also provides deep knowledge of Algeria’s legal environment. Recent work includes advice on oil and gas projects, as well as major construction and infrastructural projects in the leisure, retail, and energy spaces.
Foreign firms in Algeria
Other key lawyers:
Société des Parcs d’Alger
Baker Hughes GE
Renaissance Heavy Industries (Rönesans)
- Advising Wintershall DEA on various legal aspects of the Reggane upstream developments in Algeria and more recently, over the last year, the gas sales agreement relating to the Reggane gas field.
- Advised Anadarko on the change of control of its Algerian assets in relation to Anadarko’s acquisition by Occidental Petroleum (Oxy).
- Advising Baker Hughes – GE on the restructuring of its investment in Algeria through new corporate structures and service contracts, in the context of restricted foreign ownership legislation and following the merger between Baker Hughes and GE.
The Paris-based international arbitration team at Shearman & Sterling LLP is often instructed by the Algerian government in disputes. Yas Banifatemi and Benjamin Siino successfully acted for the Algerian government in a dispute against Orascom TMTI, involving an award by an international arbitral tribunal. Gaillard and Maude Lebois also successfully defended a claim against the Algerian state by a Spanish construction group. Coralie Darrigade represents companies and states in arbitrations.
Herbert Smith Freehills LLP
Oil and gas mandates constitute the bulk of the work that Herbert Smith Freehills LLP undertakes in Algeria. The firm has advised clients in the sector on market entry and exit, gas sales agreements, acquisitions, and projects work. The firm also has extensive experience in the construction and infrastructure sectors, having handled several contentious matters in those industries. While litigation is led by Laurence Franc-Menget and senior associate Thomas Herman, the firm draws on the expertise of a network of well-regarded local firms to assist in its execution.
Bertrand Montembault; Craig Tevendale
Other key lawyers:
‘They are always client oriented. They try to answer inquiries to advise not what they know but what the client wants to know and needs to know.’
ORTIZ CONSTRUCCIONES Y PROYECTOS SAS
Willis Towers Watson
- Advising Ortiz Construccioes y Proyectos SA in an ICSID arbitration based on the Spain/Algeria BIT.
- Advising Willis Towers Watson on the sale of its entire shareholdings in businesses in 15 African markets, including Algeria.
Linklaters LLP works with local firms to advise on key oil and gas projects, such as the high-profile $1.5bn petrochemical project between Sonatrach and Total in Arzew, which has involved the firm's experience of the Algerian foreign investment regime. The practice is also handling the sale of an international company's upstream Algerian oil and gas assets. London-based Andrew Jones heads the Africa group and Paris-based Bertrand Andriani heads the Francophone Africa practice. Managing associate Aymeric Voisin provides additional support and is a key name for project development and financings across the wider Francophone region.
Andrew Jones; Bertrand Andriani
Other key lawyers:
Carlyle Investment Management L.L.C.
LetterOne Holdings S.A.
L1E Acquisitions GmbH
- Advising an international oil and gas exploration company on the sale of its upstream Algerian oil and gas assets located in the Ghadames Basin (Rhourde El Louh and Sif Fatima).
- Advising Sonatrach and Total on the $1.5bn petrochemical project (Propane DeHydrogenation (PDH)) in Arzew, Algeria.
- Advising Carlyle on the acquisition of a significant minority stake in Compañía Española de Petróleos, SAU (Cepsa) from Mubadala Investment Company (Mubadala).
White & Case LLP handles its Algerian caseload from its Paris office, working on complex dispute resolution matters. Practice head Christophe Von Krause has a particular focus on the construction and infrastructure and energy sectors, while the firm also advises clients from the oil and gas, power, chemicals and telecoms sectors.
Christophe von Krause
- Advising a major South Korean construction conglomerate on the successful settlement of a dispute arising out of the construction of a power project.
- Advising a Franco-Malaysian company on a potential ICC arbitration over the operation of a seawater desalination plant.
- Advising one of the largest Chinese state-owned multinational engineering and construction companies in an ICC arbitration regarding a joint venture corporate dispute against Algerian shareholders.
At Eversheds El Heni (a member of Eversheds Sutherland), Tunisia-based Farès Koussay El Heni and Wesley Pydiamah, who is based in Paris, are the key names. The group handles a range of work but is particularly prominent in disputes and project and energy matters.
LPA-CGR has provided a local presence in Algeria for over a decade, having established an Algiers office in 2007. During the past year the firm's work has strongly focused on the automotive sector, with the team involved in high-profile deals. Corporate and M&A expert Rym Loucif, who heads the office, is experienced in investment and divestment operations and takes on oil and gas projects, working on financing and EPC contracts. Fellow resident partner Fatima-Zohra Bouchemla handles dispute resolution and arbitration.
Other key lawyers: