Claim No. CFI 016/2013
THE DUBAI INTERNATIONAL FINANCIAL CENTRE COURTS
IN THE COURT OF FIRST INSTANCE OF DIFC COURTS
|ROBINSON CLUB GMBH||Applicant|
ZABEEL INVESTMENT L.L.C
ORDER MADE BY H.E. JUSTICE ALI AL MADHANI
UPON reading the Application No. 001/2013;
AND UPON reading the correspondence thereto;
IT IS ORDERED THAT:
The application for permission to appeal be dismissed.
I refuse to grant permission to the applicant Robinson Club GMBH to appeal against the decision of Justice Sir David Steel of 25 November 2013 for the reason that I am of the view that the underlying purpose of the Decree of H.H. The Ruler of Dubai Constituting the Zabeel Investment Special Judicial Committee (“the Decree”), is to confer authority to deal with all cases and applications related to Zabeel Investments to the new Committee.
That includes new and pending cases or applications. The wording of the Decree is clearly drafted to reflect that intention:
Article 2(1) states that the Committee’s jurisdiction shall be:
“To hear and settle any claims and applications raised by or against Zabeel Investment.”
Article 3 of the Decree provides that “All Dubai Courts, including DIFC Courts, may not consider or resolve any applications or claims falling under the competence of the Committee as hereby determined. They shall all refrain from hearing all applications submitted to them before the issuance hereof. All such applications or claims are accordingly referred to the Committee.”The wording of these two Articles is clearly provides that the newly set up Committee shall deal with any new or pending applications. This application is a new one in that sense and capable of falling under the Committee’s jurisdiction.
The source of confusion for the Applicant is probably that in the given translation of the Decree, the provenance of which is uncertain, reference is made to “Applications” as “Demands” which led the Applicant to maintain that the Committee or Tribunal should only hear new cases or “Demands” which should be interpreted as the claiming of remedies, while he is applying to ratify and to enforce a determinative Arbitral Award that does not bring any new claim or demand and therefore would not fall under that Committee’s Jurisdiction.
When referring to the Arabic version the problematic word for me means “Application” by definition and not “Demands” as stated in the said English translation, the word “applications” is wide enough to accommodate an application for ratification and enforcement.
Although the Arbitral Award itself can be considered to be a litigated claim and no Committee or court should intervene in its merits beyond to the extent provided under the ratification power of that court, the application to ratify or to enforce is a new application however under the meaning of Articles 2 and 3 of the Decree and I do not see any issues or difficulties with this new Committee dealing with the new application to ratify or enforce the Arbitral Award.
In answer to all the other arguments put forward by the Applicant, the new Tribunal or Committee can now deal with all issues that the DIFC or Dubai Courts would have examined before the establishment of this new Tribunal.
Nassir Al Nasser
Date of Issue: 9 February 2014
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