If the Paris Court of Appeal embarks on this path and decides to apply the French material rules, the two judgments may be inconsistent. French jurisprudence tends to suggest that an arbitration agreement can be extended to all companies in a group, including those that are not signatories12. It remains to be decided whether the French Court of Appeal will be sensitive to an argument that the arbitration agreement is non-immediate and that a reasoned arbitration award confirming the arbitration agreement would also be non-issue. The question of the seat of the court arose in the context of an enforcement procedure. Nigeria argued that the seat was Nigeria and that the “place” of the arbitration agreement should relate only to the physical place of the hearings. On the other hand, P-ID stated that the seat was England and that “Venus” was referring to the legal seat of arbitration. As the court had already ruled on the case (and this was not disputed by Nigeria), the court found that it was no longer open to Nigeria to reopen the issue. The Tribunal also confirmed that the Tribunal had made the correct decision regarding the seat. It was agreed that the principles of construction in Nigerian law were the same as those provided for under English law. The court also took into account the inclusion of the Nigerian ACA rules, which contained rules for determining the legal seat.

The court found that the seat was England because: the Court of Appeal disagreed and found that Sections 1 and 15 of the FDA in itself provide for the explicit choice of English law for the Article 14 arbitration agreement. The Court found it imperative (point 62) that Nigeria asked the English courts to quash the additional liability because of serious irregularities. That request was denied. Nigeria then asked the Nigerian courts to quash the sentence. Before the Nigerian courts ruled on the application for annulment, the court issued a procedural order confirming that the seat of arbitration was London, England. It should also be noted that the Kabab-Ji SAL/Kout Food Group has refused to suspend the English recognition procedure, while a nullity procedure is under way at the Paris Court of Appeal. This decision creates the necessary conditions for potentially contradictory and inconsistent judgments in England, Wales and France. BCZ submitted that the SPA had never been executed, but that it was agreed to resolve all disputes arising from it.

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