ICSID: Mauritania wins arm wrestling against Bumi (Exclusive)

A hidden transaction changes everything in this long standoff between Mauritania and Bumi.

The two-year dispute with the Paris-based International Center for the Resolution of Disputes and Investment Disputes (ICSID) has seen the Mauritanian state’s dispute with Tamagot Bumi and Bumi Mauritania unfold. The court condemns Bumi to pay 3, 3 million euros to the Mauritanian state for abusive procedures.


In this case, Mauritania was defended by Eric Diamantis, Pierre Ferroud and Jamal Taleb of Clyde. Opposite, Bumi had opted for the tandem Laurent Jaeger and Pascal Agboyibor from Orrick.

The knot of the case

In fact, the lawyers who defended Mauritania established that Bumi Mauritania had been sold by the Abeidina family. The sale was posted on the Jakarta Stock Exchange. Having provided all the evidence of the covert deal before ICSID, the Mauritanian state’s lawyers raised the incompetence of the court, which heavily condemned Bumi.

The dispute between the two parties dates back to 2013 when the Mauritanian Ministry of Oil, Energy and Mines decided to

not to commute the exploration licenses of the two Bumi companies under an operating license, arguing that the start of the work was delayed. A position diametrically opposed to statements by BUMI estimated to have invested up to $ 43 million on the sites in question.

The granting of a mining exploration license to TAMAGOT BUMI Mauritanie SA, a 90% -owned subsidiary of BUMI Mauritanie SA (the Jakarta transaction changes the game), dates from December 2011. The estimated deposit on these two sites would be 600 thousand tons of iron.

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