Chérine Ftouki is a global international arbitration professional at Mayer Brown and a member of both the International Arbitration practice and the Global Knowledge Management team.
Chérine received a comprehensive dual legal education in both civil and common law, and her experience spans various areas, including Investor-State Arbitration, International Commercial Arbitration, Public International Law, Dispute Resolution, and International Energy Trade Law.
She has obtained significant legal experience in International Arbitration, which allows her to assist in advisory work relating to arbitration and post-arbitration proceedings, as well as energy and infrastructure projects. She has substantive knowledge of Investment Treaty Arbitration and the protection of foreign investments and has strong multi-jurisdictional connections, particularly in the Middle-East region.
Prior to joining Mayer Brown, Chérine worked for a boutique law firm in London. She predominantly worked with the Arbitration practice, assisting mainly on US and Latin America contentious and arbitration matters, including various disputes linked to global instability, regulatory changes and financial pressures leading to a range of problems for energy projects, oil and gas facilities, offshore drilling and maritime transactions.
She then joined the Energy & Infrastructures group of a large American global firm in the UK, where she mainly focused on advising clients in the MENA region, She worked on several projects related to construction and shipping industries in the Middle East, advising a variety of stakeholders, including governments, NGOs and corporations. Chérine gained valuable experience in diverse cross-border energy negotiations, which cover both upstream and downstream operations. Her specific focus lies in the areas of energy transition and green energy governmental incentives. In particular, she has knowledge in market access issues, including LNG, green energy (solar, hydrogen), infrastructures and mining disputes, amongst others.
Chérine has worked on complex and high-value cross-border international investment and commercial arbitrations conducted under leading international arbitration institutions such as ICSID, ICC, LCIA, or on Ad hoc arbitrations. She has been involved in arbitration proceedings under the rules of various trade bodies such as the LMAA, UNCITRAL, LCIA, or ICC.
Investment Treaty Arbitration & International Commercial Arbitration
- A Panama oil-company — ICC Arbitration under UNCITRAL Rules: advice related to a dispute in relation to breach of a service agreement related to oil exploration and production asset located in the Republic of Yemen.*
- A global design, engineering and management consulting company with a branch office in Qatar — ICC Arbitration against an unincorporated joint venture of companies carrying out construction works of a Qatari complex project: advice on a dispute related to consultancy agreement for Architectural Finishes Design Service.*
- A global engineering and construction company: advice in connection to a prospective arbitration seated at Qatar Chamber of Commerce Arbitration under ICC rule, arising from an investor-state dispute involving high profile and complex construction projects in Qatar in readiness for the FIFA 2022 World Cup.*
- A province of Pakistan (part of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan) — ICSID Arbitration, subsequent ICC Arbitration: advice on subsequent English proceedings to assist a Pakistani province (part of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan) in Commercial Court proceedings concerning an underlying ICC arbitration arising from a US $6billion gold and copper mining dispute in Pakistan with Tethyan Copper Company Pty Limited (an Australian joint venture company owned by Barrick Gold Corporation and Antofagasta Plc). Province of Balochistan v Tethyan Copper Company Pty Limited  EWHC 1884 (Comm).*
- A Venezuelan state-owned oil and natural gas company, dispute related to the Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB) global fraud investigation: advice in connection to a dispute consequent to an arbitral award rendered for the non-payment of offshore drilling invoices. Advising on application to the French courts to have an UNCITRAL award set aside on the basis that the drilling contract was tainted by “money-laundering, bribery and corruption”. Subsequent legal advice on seeking the lift of a freezing injunction on an escrow account holding $340 million caught up in the sovereign wealth fund 1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB) global fraud investigation.*
- A Latin-American state-owned oil and natural gas company: advice in a dispute with a Jamaican state-owned entity involving legal expertise on an ICC arbitration claim linked to a Joint Venture Agreement and subsequent advice on tax issues, public law policy considerations due to a change of regulations. Assisted to recover compensation in line with client's legitimate expectations.*
- A major state-owned oil and natural gas company: advice in connection with 10 interrelated ad hoc arbitrations conducted in accordance to LMAA Rules, disputes in respect to maritime and offshore support - charterers’ obligation.*
- A renowned state-owned entity commercializing hydrocarbons, both oil and gas refined products: advising on all types of trading and on a dispute linked to joint venture banking arrangements impact due to US Sanction against Venezuela. The case involved high-level considerations of US Trump Administration Embargo and Sanctions Regulations.*
- A Georgian state-owned oil entity: advice in connection with a dispute linked to a Joint Venture Agreement made to ensure the westward transit of oil via the territory of Georgia, the reconstruction and operation of an existing pipeline, and construction of new westward pipelines project in Georgia with other state-owned enterprise.*
- An English football club: mediation under the Swiss Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS).*
- Advising a Swiss NGO foundation in petitioning the District Court of Harris County, Texas, US: for the families of some of the victims of Beirut’s deadly 2020 port blast to file a $250 million lawsuit against an American-Norwegian firm.*
- An international law claim in the High Court of Justice of England and Wales regarding the funding of an Al-Qaeda affiliated terrorist and jihadist organization during the Syrian civil war by a State entity: assisting with drafting a memorandum on state Immunity and government entities funding of terrorist activities and armed conflicts through financial fraud.*
- A Qatari yachts company – Commercial Court of England & Wales: advice related to a Shipbuilding Repair and Refit Agreement dispute under a Parent Company Guarantee.*
- A shareholder of a British boutique law firm: advice following the issue of a petition directly against other shareholders claim for unfair prejudice pursuant to s994 of the Companies Act 2006.*
- A high-profile bank customer: litigation against a renowned British bank pursuant to the disclosure of confidential data and banking confidentiality breach.*
- Employees of a Chemicals Company: advice in class action trial linked to a dispute related to product liability.*
- Various French companies: disputes related to product liability (asbestos and solvents), insurance law, and social security litigation (occupational diseases and hazards, employer liability for gross negligence).*
- A French corporation: advice in connection with white-collar crime allegations under French Law.*
* Experience gained prior to joining Mayer Brown
University of Westminster, Graduate Diploma in Law (GDL)
King's College London, LLM, International Dispute Resolution
Master’s Director Prof. Holger Hestermeyer
La Sorbonne-Panthéon Paris I, Master of Laws “Maîtrise”
Master of International Law, Speciality International Business Law, Master's Director Prof. Sylvain Bollée
Université Toulouse Capitole UT1, French LLB “Licence de Droit”
Speciality Business & Contract Law – Exchange Program at the University of Nottingham
- Member of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators (CiArb)
- Member of the Young International Arbitration Group (YIAG) at the London Court of International Arbitration (LCIA)
- Arbitrator - Willem C. Vis International Commercial Arbitration Moot 2019 - 2021
- Young ICSID Member - International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID)