In our June market overview we are seeing that the low
price of oil is continuing to affect the economy in Qatar, with
cut-backs and redundancies evident. However, despite the slow-down
it is forecast that US$22.2 billion will be spent on infrastructure
projects this year as Qatar presses ahead with its commitments to
hosting the FIFA 2022 World Cup and to realising the Qatar National
Analysing the impact of the reduced spend across construction
works we have identified the following trends:
general slow-down in projects;
increase in internal JV disputes; and
contractual manipulation by strategic de-scoping of works.
As a result formal disputes are on the rise. For organisations
that are contemplating formal dispute resolution proceedings here
are some of the key issues for consideration, both at the outset
and during a dispute.
Is there a magic bullet?
There is rarely if ever a ''magic bullet''. You
must prove your claim(s).
Decide early if it is a case of ''can't
pay'' or ''won't pay''. It is rarely
the former, usually the latter. The key is to escalate your claim
within a list of priorities – the ''squeaky
Taking charge of timelines
Time is always on the side of the payer, never the recipient.
Consequently the payer (employer) can always afford to sit
Unless there has been a clear and unequivocal waiver it is
difficult to avoid clearly drafted dispute escalation provisions,
(i) agree a timeline for each stage of the process;
(ii) keep a record of any failure to meet the timeline; and
(iii) warn of any failure before withdrawing from the
Decide early whether the other side's tactic is merely to
waste time. If so set your strategy to combat this.
Is this the right route forward?
Decide early whether you believe the other side is negotiating
in ''good faith''. If no then quick escalation to
formal dispute resolution proceedings is the only realistic way
Relationships are key in the Middle East. Are you concerned
about relationships going forward? This may influence your
Will my claim succeed?
You will not be paid just because you make a claim. You must
evidence each and every part of your claim by demonstrating:
(i) a contractual, or other, entitlement;
(ii) a causal link between entitlement and loss; and
(iii) the value of your claim.
The quality of the evidence required for negotiation is less
robust than that required for a formal dispute process. If it is
obvious that negotiation will or is unlikely to be successful then
prepare both. It will not be wasted time and effort.
In difficult times (such as these) you must appear resolutely
determined albeit reluctant to bring a claim if a negotiated
settlement cannot be reached.
In September we will host the third seminar in our 2016 Qatar
Law Construction Essentials series. The next in the series offers a
practical guide to common issues arising in dispute resolution
procedures in Qatar. The core focus will be how Qatar law applies
to the issues you are likely to encounter.
Dentons is the world's first polycentric global law firm. A
top 20 firm on the Acritas 2015 Global Elite Brand Index, the Firm
is committed to challenging the status quo in delivering consistent
and uncompromising quality and value in new and inventive ways.
Driven to provide clients a competitive edge, and connected to the
communities where its clients want to do business, Dentons knows
that understanding local cultures is crucial to successfully
completing a deal, resolving a dispute or solving a business
challenge. Now the world's largest law firm, Dentons'
global team builds agile, tailored solutions to meet the local,
national and global needs of private and public clients of any size
in more than 125 locations serving 50-plus countries.
The content of this article is intended to provide a general
guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought
about your specific circumstances.
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Budget 2017 is out! In his recent Budget speech, Finance Minister Heng Swee Keat announced numerous initiatives to assist SMEs with adopting digital technologies and accessing intellectual property (IP) rights. Through these initiatives, companies may now obtain the support they need in order to tap on the digital economy and improve productivity.
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