Sabrina Aïnouz is a partner in the International Dispute Resolution Practice Group. She has more than 15 years of experience representing states, state-owned entities and private sector companies in commercial and investment arbitrations.

    Sabrina acts as counsel for states, state-owned entities and private sector companies in investor-state and commercial arbitrations in a variety of fields, including oil and gas, mining, construction, telecommunications, agriculture and post-M&A disputes. She has represented clients in ICSID, ICC, SCC and UNCITRAL arbitrations, with disputed amounts ranging from US$20 million to US$12 billion.

    Sabrina also acts as counsel in enforcement proceedings and in proceedings for the annulment of international awards before ICSID and French courts.

    She is a member of the ICC International Court of Arbitration.

    Prior to joining the firm, Sabrina practiced for more than 15 years in leading international arbitration law firms in Paris.

    Award Mouse thought multimedia interface book medal screen monitor

    Representative Arbitration Cases

    • Counsel for Algeria in a US$3.6 billion ICSID arbitration initiated by a Danish oil company, under the Algeria-Denmark BIT, in connection with the alleged expropriation of its rights under a production sharing agreement.
    • Counsel for Sonatrach, the Algerian national oil company, in a US$12 billion UNCITRAL arbitration initiated by US and Danish oil companies in connection with the alleged breach of tax provisions in a production sharing agreement (arbitration in French and English; Algerian law applicable).
    • Counsel for the Russian Federation in a US$1 billion UNCITRAL arbitration initiated by a US oil major in connection with the alleged breach of profit tax provisions in a production sharing agreement.
    • Counsel for the Republic of Kazakhstan and the Kazakh NOC in a parallel US$7 billion UNCITRAL arbitration and expert determination proceedings against a consortium of oil majors in connection with the alleged breach by the consortium of a production sharing agreement.
    • Counsel for the Republic of Kazakhstan and the Kazakh NOC in a US$4 billion UNCITRAL arbitration against a consortium of oil majors in connection with the alleged breach by the consortium of the profit sharing provisions in a production sharing agreement.
    • Counsel for the Republic of Kazakhstan and the Kazakh NOC in an UNCITRAL arbitration against a consortium of oil majors in connection with the alleged breach by the consortium of the cost recovery provisions in a production sharing agreement.
    • Counsel for Turkmenistan in a US$275 million ICSID arbitration initiated by a Turkish company, under the Turkey-Turkmenistan BIT, in connection with the alleged expropriation of its rights under major construction contracts.
    • Counsel for Turkmenistan in a US$65 million ICSID arbitration initiated by a UK company, under the UK-Turkmenistan BIT, in connection with the alleged expropriation of its rights under major construction contracts.
    • Counsel for Turkmenistan in a US$65 million ICSID arbitration initiated by a German national, under the Germany-Turkmenistan BIT, in connection with the alleged expropriation of a poultry business.
    • Counsel for PDVSA, the Venezuelan national oil company, in a US$7 billion ICC arbitration initiated by an oil major in connection with alleged breaches of a production sharing agreement.
    • Counsel for PDVSA in a US$200 million ICC arbitration in connection with alleged breaches of an oil supply agreement.
    • Counsel for an oil company in an ICC arbitration and parallel proceedings before the London High Court initiated by an African state national oil company in connection with the acquisition of an oil permit.
    • Counsel for a Saudi industrial group in an ICC arbitration against an Italian fashion house in connection with the termination of a franchising agreement.
    • Counsel for a Russian national in connection with a potential US$600 million UNCITRAL arbitration against an Eastern European state arising out of the confiscation by the state of bonds and monies in violation of the state’s obligations under a BIT.
    • Counsel for a multinational mining company in connection with potential ICSID and ICC arbitrations arising out of the violation by an African state of its obligations following the adoption of a new mining code imposing additional charges upon mining operations.
    • Counsel for a junior mining company in a pre-arbitration dispute with an Eastern European state in connection with the granting by the state of two mining exploitation permits.
    • Counsel for a junior oil company in a pre-arbitration dispute with a West African state arising out of the renewal of the exploration phase of an exploration and production sharing agreement.

    Enforcement and Annulment Proceedings

    • Counsel for the Republic of Kazakhstan in ICSID proceedings for the annulment of an arbitral award declining jurisdiction.
    • Counsel for Turkmenistan in ICSID proceedings for the annulment of an arbitral award declining jurisdiction.
    • Counsel for Turkmenistan in ICSID proceedings for the annulment of an arbitral award rendered in favor of a German national.
    • Counsel for an Indian state-owned space company in proceedings for the annulment of an ICC international arbitral award before the Paris Court of Appeals.
    • Counsel for a Mexican state-owned bank in French proceedings for the annulment of an ICC international arbitral award before the Paris Court of Appeals.
    • Counsel for a Mexican airline company in French proceedings for the annulment of an ICC international arbitral award before the Paris Court of Appeals.
    • Counsel for Turkmenistan in French proceedings for the annulment of an exequatur order issued in France.
    • Counsel for Turkmenistan in French proceedings for the release of conservatory attachments over a presidential aircraft in France before the Toulouse Court of Appeals.
    • Counsel for Turkmenistan and a Turkmen state-owned entity in French proceedings for the release of conservatory attachments over bank accounts and company shares held in France before the Paris Court of Appeals.
    • Counsel for PDVSA in connection with the potential enforcement in France of a US$12 billion worldwide freezing order issued by the London High Court (Mareva Injunction).
    • Counsel for a national oil and gas company in connection with the potential enforcement in France of an SCC award rendered against another national oil and gas company.
    • Counsel for an African national oil and gas company in French proceedings for the enforcement of two ICC awards rendered against the African state.

    Education

    • Paris X, Master II in International Dispute Resolution, with honors, 2004
    • Paris X, Master I in Political Science, with honors, 2003
    • Paris X, Master I in Business Law, with honors, 2002

    Admissions

    • Paris, 2006

    Languages

    • French
    • English

    • Speaker, “The Sanitary Crisis: A Turning Point in the Digitalization of Arbitration?” Aix-Marseille III University/Club de l’Arbitrage Webinar, September 30, 2020.
    • Speaker, “ICC’s Innovative Techniques Aimed at Mitigating the Effects of the COVID-19 Pandemic,” ICC/Legal Doctrine Webinar, June 23, 2020.
    • Co-author, “Commercial Arbitration: France,” GAR Know-How, 2018-2020.
    • Speaker, “Public tenders and arbitration: the African experience,” Paris Arbitration Week, April 1, 2019.
    • Speaker, “The GAR Live Question Time: investor-state disputes,” First Annual GAR Live Conference in Moscow, March 21, 2019.
    • Moderator, “Investment Arbitration: What Can We Expect in the Next 10 Years?” 3rd CARDS Tour de Arbitration, Paris, February 5, 2019.
    • Co-author, “ICSID Tribunal’s ratione materiae jurisdiction in light of 50 years of ICSID African Jurisprudence,” LGDJ, 2019.
    • Co-author, “Mining Arbitration in Central Asia,” GAR Guide to Mining Arbitration, 2019.
    • Speaker, “Investment Arbitration and Africa: Challenges and Perspectives,” Institut Supérieur de Management, Dakkar, May 12, 2018.
    • Speaker, “Structuring Arbitration in Share Purchase and Shareholder Agreements,” Paris Arbitration Week, April 10, 2018.
    • Speaker, “International Arbitration: How to Promote Efficiency and Contain Costs?” Kazakh National Chamber of Commerce, KPMG Kazakhstan, Astana, March 2018.
    • Lecturer, “Introduction to International Arbitration,” International Business Development MBA, ICD International Business School, February 2018.
    • Speaker, “50 years of Africa at ICSID: Retrospective and Prospective Views,” ICSID ratione materiae jurisdiction, Institut Afrique Monde, Jus Africa, Paris, March 27, 2017.
    • Speaker, “Skills that make a difference: What it takes to be effective counsel in international arbitration,” Launch of the Young ArbitralWomen Practitioners (YAWP), Zurich, April 7, 2016.
    • Speaker, “Investment arbitration and Turkey – Making the best use of it,” Second Annual GAR Live Conference in Istanbul, June 26, 2014.
    • Lecturer, training programs on international law, arbitration and investment treaties for the Libyan National Oil Corporation, 2016-2017.
    • Lecturer, training programs on international law, arbitration and investment treaties for Sonatrach, the Algerian national oil company, 2010-2012.

    Award Mouse thought multimedia interface book medal screen monitor