Dispute resolution: international arbitration in Thailand

Baker McKenzie

Baker McKenzie's international arbitration practice has handled disputes in the construction, insurance, and banking and finance sectors in domestic and regional arbitration forums. The team is jointly headed by Chirachai Okanurak, who is well-versed in ICC and UNCITRAL proceedings and Kanit Vallayapet, who has decades of experience in arbitration. Wynn Pakdeejit is experienced in the Thai Arbitration Institute and also has experience in enforcement proceedings, having recently acted to enforce an LCIA award in a Thai court.

Practice head(s):

Chirachai Okanurak; Kanit Vallayapet; Wynn Pakdeejit

Key clients

Bangkok Expressway and Metro

PTT Group

Hyundai Heavy Industries

True Move

True Corporation

General Motors Thailand

Deutsche Bank AG

Watson Farley & Williams (Thailand) Limited

Watson Farley & Williams (Thailand) Limited provides 'outstanding service in international arbitration' and is well versed in a variety of arbitral forums, including the LCIA, SIAC and UNCITRAL. Practice head Steven Burkill has particular experience in London and Singapore-based arbitration involving power and energy projects. Another key contact in the team is the 'very highly regardedKay Kian Tan, who specialises in disputes involving energy, international trade, transport and insurance. Other names to note include Ratthakarn Boonnua and Belle Chewprecha.

Practice head(s):

Steven Burkill

Other key lawyers:

Kay Kian Tan; Ratthakarn Boonnua

Testimonials

‘WFW Thailand is the pre-eminent international arbitration disputes practice in Thailand.’

‘WFW Thailand merits its position as the go-to disputes firm in Bangkok.’

WFW Thailand provide an outstanding dispute resolution service both in international arbitration in the region and globally.’

‘Steve Burkill and Kay Kian Tan are excellent and provide a deep understanding of Thai and SE dispute resolution.’

‘Steve and Kay have spent significant periods in Thailand and are very highly regarded by Thai and international clients doing business in the region.’

‘Ratthakarn Boonua has a wide international arbitration practice and a vibrant Thai Court commercial practice acting as advocate in the Thai courts and arbitration on some of the largest commercial disputes in the country.’

‘The team is responsive, quick to grasp legal problems and find innovative solutions for clients.’

‘Bhavish is responsive and incisive. He gets to the nub of the issue very quickly, and is able to convey the legal position in an easily understandable manner.’

Key clients

Christiani & Nielsen (Thai)

Louis Dreyfus Commodities

PTT Public Company

Work highlights

  • Representing Louis Dreyfus Commodities Suisse SA in enforcing six arbitral awards against commodities traders in Thailand collectively worth $10m.

DLA Piper

DLA Piper (Thailand) Limited's Bangkok team has a strong understanding of the enforcement of arbitral awards, and is able to link up with its colleagues in established centres of arbitration such as London, Singapore and Hong Kong to provide seamless service in major international arbitration. The practice group is jointly led by Don  Rojanapenkul and Peter Shelford, the latter of whom has expertise in insurance and reinsurance and construction disputes in the TAI and SIAC. Another name to note includes senior consultant Robert Tang, who focuses on energy and construction-related disputes.

Practice head(s):

Peter Shelford; Don Rojanapenkul

Other key lawyers:

Robert Tang

Key clients

AIG

Allied World Assurance

Chubb

Diebold Nixdorf

Dhipaya Insurance

GLH Asset Management Corporation

HKR International (Thailand)

Work highlights

  • Acting as counsel for AECOM Technology Corporation, DMJM International and AECOM USA INC in relation to a multiparty arbitration concerning the $100m construction of Suvarnabhumi airport.
  • Acting for APICO LLC in ICC arbitration proceedings resulting from a gas sales agreement in Thailand worth $15m.
  • Represented clients in defending multiple arbitration claims filed by multiple buyers alleging breach of various agreements, including a villa construction agreement and land lease agreement.
  • Acting for a Eurosport Events, based in the UK, in relation to their dispute with a Thai investing party. The dispute concerns a FIA world touring car championship event.

Herbert Smith Freehills (Thailand) Limited

Herbert Smith Freehills (Thailand) Limited's international arbitration practice is active throughout the Asia Pacific region, with high-level experience in Bangkok, Singapore and Kuala Lumpur. Chinnawat Thongpakdee heads the Bangkok office and has acted for Thai and international companies in disputes across a variety of key industry sectors. Leveraging its international network, the firm is also capable of acting on arbitration and enforcement matters involving parallel proceedings in other jurisdictions.

Practice head(s):

Chinnawat Thongpakdee

Tilleke & Gibbins

Tilleke & Gibbins has a track record of success at the TAI and often acts as local counsel in UNCITRAL and ICC arbitration with a Thai law element. The practice group is jointly led by John Frangos and Michael Ramirez, the latter of whom is a member of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators and has experience representing clients in regional enforcement proceedings. Recent highlights included Frangos acting for the Japan Transport Engineering company in arbitration regarding the manufacture and supply of rail cars for a subway line in Bangkok. Thawat Damsa-ard is also recommended.

Practice head(s):

John Frangos; Michael Ramirez

Other key lawyers:

Thawat Damsa-ard

Key clients

East Japan Railway Company

Everest Reinsurance Company

Japan Transport Engineering Company

Work highlights

  • Conducting an arbitration for Japan Transport Engineering Company which was sub contracted to manufacture and supply rail cars for a new subway line in Bangkok.

Weerawong, Chinnavat & Partners

Weerawong, Chinnavat & Partners has experience in many of the primary centres of international arbitration in the Asia Pacific region, including Singapore and Hong Kong. Moreover, the firm's expertise has also seen it involved in proceedings outside the region. Key contacts in the team include Phisit  Dejchaiyasak, who heads the arbitration team, and Warathorn Wongsawangsiri, who has handled a variety of disputes at the Hong Kong International Arbitration Centre and Singapore International Centre. In addition to its arbitration work, the firm also handles the enforcement of arbitral awards.

Practice head(s):

Phisit Dejchaiyasak

Other key lawyers:

Warathorn Wongsawangsiri

Key clients

Radisson Blu Hotel

Work highlights

  • Advised a real estate investment company based in Macau in the enforcement of a Singapore International Arbitration Center award in Thailand in connection with a contractual dispute with a number of entities in South East Asia.
  • Representing LP Holdings in an international arbitration at the Hong Kong IA centre in a dispute with Hilton hotel in relation to the hotel management agreement.
  • Represents Radisson Blue Hotel in an international arbitration case at Singapore IA center in relation to the termination of a hotel management agreement.
  • Representing Pacific Phuket in relation to a hotel management agreement with Regent Asia in which RA agreed to provide services including the construction, management and operation of the hotel.