Ray O'Connor specialises in both contentious and non-contentious aspects of engineering and construction dealing with major infrastructure, rail/light rail, civil engineering, energy, process plant, PFI/PPP, development and building projects.

    He advises on the full range of construction documents/procurement including EPC contracts, D&B/D&C contracts, traditional procurement contracts, O&M Agreements, professional appointments, collateral warranties, bonds, guarantees, PFI / PPP agreements, development agreements, agreements for lease, concession agreements, funding agreements and other documentation relating to the engineering, procurement and construction aspects of projects.

    Ray also advises clients regarding all aspects of domestic and international disputes and has experience of a broad range of dispute resolution techniques including litigation, arbitration, expert determination, adjudication and other forms of alternative dispute resolution (ADR).

    Ray has worked as in-house counsel for a strategic development arm of a Middle East sovereign wealth fund. He has also worked on secondment for Bombardier Transportation in the UK advising in relation to a wide range of rail related issues and for a major developer in Qatar setting up a suite of FIDIC contracts and dealing with the construction contracts / disputes for a US$5 billion regeneration project. As a result, he is fully aware of the commercial realities faced by clients and always takes this into account for all his clients.

    Ray is the co-author of Thomson Reuters publication “Business Laws of Kuwait and Qatar" (2009/10 and 2010/11) and has published a number of articles in the business magazine in Qatar, The Edge.

    He was also ranked as a "Rising Star" in the 2009 and 2010 editions of Chambers UK and described as "a strong all-round construction lawyer who really gets under the skin of the legal issues”.

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    Major Infrastructure/Development

    • Major urban regeneration – Advising a Middle East developer (in house) generally in relation to all construction issues associated with the procurement and construction of a flagship US$5 billion regeneration in the centre of Doha, Qatar. Examples include reviewing, amending, drafting, negotiating, providing training and workshops on the following:
      • Various Consultant Appointments (FIDIC with Particular Conditions and entirely bespoke forms);
      • FIDIC Red / Yellow Book and Particular Condition and bespoke forms of construction contracts;
      • Letters of Award / Letters of Intent;
      • DBOM for District Cooling and Vacuum Waste Management (Yellow / Gold Book variants);
      • Bespoke short form goods, works and services procurement contracts;
      • Bespoke value engineering and non-disclosure agreements to facilitate pre-tender value engineering of high value / higher cost risk items;
      • Joint venture arrangements with an international hotel operator / associated construction contracts;
      • Innovative framework concrete supply agreement / license arrangements for large scale concrete supply.
    • Railway stations – Advising a UK government agency responsible for the delivery of transport and infrastructure projects, Centro, in relation to claims arising in relation to the £20 million construction of a second access way .
    • Airports – Analysing contracts and advising an international contractor in relation to potential claims connected with variations and delays in respect of the New Doha International Airport.
    • Tram systems – Drafting, negotiating and tendering NEC3 based contracts for the entire upgrade of the oldest tram system in the UK (including 15 kilometre of new track, 74 new tram stops, various highway junctions and a new depot, maintenance and stabling facility).
    • Lead consultants – Advising a Qatari developer in relation to the suspension and termination of one of its lead consultants, including reviewing complex associated claims and counterclaims under Qatari law. Matter settled following exchange of pre-court position statements and commercial negotiations.
    • Transport Interchange – Advising a UK government agency responsible for the delivery of transport and infrastructure projects, Centro, in relation to the new transport interchange development (bus, rail and light rail interchange) in the City of Wolverhampton.
    • Tram system – Drafting one of the largest joint employer advance design consultancy agreements for the extension of the Nottingham Tram system (NET2) and running the entire procurement process.
    • Urban regeneration – Advising in relation to the regeneration project in Reading Town Centre - a circa £100 million-plus mixed-use development.
    • Hotels – Providing construction and development related advice to an international hotel operator in relation to hotels in Qatar and in the UK.
    • Agricultural – Drafting FIDIC based conditions and variation agreements and professional appointments for a circa US$8 million new farm in Qatar.
    • Strategic Reserves Management – Drafting and negotiating international supply and erection contracts (heavy plant and bunkers) for a strategic grain security programme in the Middle East.
    • Light rail system – Advising in relation to the implementation of a light rail system into a mixed use development in the Middle East.
    • Golf course – Reviewing and amending consultancy agreements for the proposed new Golf Course at Education City, Doha.
    • Funding arrangements – Advising Royal Bank of Scotland, Barclays, HSBC and Bank of Ireland on the construction aspects of numerous real estate finance/secured lending projects.

    Energy and Process Plant

    • Sub-station – Advising the main contractor in disputes up and down the contractual chain regarding the construction of Europe’s largest sub-station.
    • Ports / Grain Handling Facilities – Advising on stakeholder interface agreements and bespoke FIDIC conditions and procurement documents for a design, project management and construction contract in relation to a new 270,000mt grain handling terminal and associated mega grain handling facilities/process plant at the New Port Project being constructed in Qatar – estimated capital cost US$137 million.
    • CHP – Advising ABB Limited in relation to various energy services/combined heat and power projects (circa 2-8 MW) in the public and private sectors. Contracts bespoke forms and include long term operation and maintenance (circa 10-15 years).
    • Medical Production Facility – Acting for a design and engineering division of Amec, defending court proceedings in relation to the design and construction of a "cutting edge" medical production facility in the UK. Matter settled following facilitative mediation.
    • Energy/CHP – Advising the Carbon & Energy Fund in relation to several projects under their £1.2 billion investment programme across the NHS hospital estate– CHP and related systems and construction works including long term circa 15 year O+M regimes. Bespoke contracts based on NHS PFI contract.
    • Power lines/irrigation – Advising on government MOU’s / joint venture arrangements and project structuring for a circa US$220 million power line in Sudan (including issues associated with a circa US$90 million canal system from the River Nile and repayment via a Power Purchase Agreement) needed for the proposed development of a circa US$1 billion 250,000 acre farm in Sudan.
    • CHP – Acting for a main contractor, EnerG Combined Power Limited, in relation to numerous contracts in the public and private sectors in relation to the provision of energy services / provision of combined heat and power process plant – to be designed, built and operated by the main contractor.
    • City Scale Slaughterhouse/Agricultural Market – Drafting and negotiating contracts and integrated procurement advice for the design and construction of a two kilometre livestock management and slaughterhouse facility including integrated processing plant facilities, separate supply agreements (nomination and novation), head office facilities, accommodation, sewage and waste water treatment plants.
    • Power Sector Corporate DD – Advising on engineering and construction documentation in relation to a corporate transaction valued at approximately £1.5 billion in the power sector.
    • Processing Plant/Corporate DD – Advising on suitability of plant and engineering contracts in connection with the acquisition of a processing facility / company in the Middle East.
    • Sewage Water Treatment Plant – Advising a household waste management company under an NEC option C, target cost contract in relation to a contract for the construction of a waste treatment facility. Claims in relation to defective design and / or workmanship. Matter settled by way of facilitative mediation.
    • District Cooling/Vacuum Waste Management – Drafting and negotiating district cooling contracts and vacuum waste contracts and associated O+M arrangement based on FIDIC Gold Book for a Middle East developer.

    Education

    • University of Reading, LL.B., 1998
    • De Montfort University, L.P.C., 1999

    Admissions

    • England and Wales

    Languages

    • English
    • French
    • Recommended in Chambers UK 2018 for Construction, Midlands
    • Recommended in The Legal 500 UK 2017 for Construction

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