Calcutta HC Orders Execution of Arbitration Award against Hindustan Copper
The Calcutta High Court has directed the execution of a foreign award against Hindustan Copper Ltd (HCL) in India that had arisen out of a two-tier arbitration in relation to an agreement between HCL and US-based Centrotrade Minerals and Metals Inc for the supply of copper concentrate.
As per the order, the bench of justice Sugato Majumdar maintained that in view of the earlier orders passed by the Supreme Court in the same matter, the High Court does not have any scope for rehearing the enforceability issue of the arbitration award.
According to a press statement issued by law firm Karanjawala & Co, representing Centrotrade, the arbitration clause in the agreement between HCL and Centrotrade provided for a two-tier arbitration mechanism whereby any dispute was to be settled by a sole arbitrator under the aegis of the Indian Council of Arbitration (ICA).
"In the event of any party disagreeing with the award rendered by the sole arbitrator, it would have a right to appeal to a second arbitration in London under the aegis of the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC)," the statement read.
Centrotrade’s law firm further claimed that in 2017, an apex court bench had held that a two-tier arbitration agreement is valid and legally permissible in India.
"Later, in 2021, another bench of the apex court also gave a go-ahead for the execution of the ICC Foreign Award passed in favour of Centrotrade," the press statement read. However, during the execution proceedings before the Calcutta High Court, HCL vehemently contested the calculated sum payable and disputed the obligation to pay compound interest as awarded to Centrotrade.
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