Bridgestone V. Panama


Arnold & Porter Kaye Scholer LLP advised the Republic of Panama on the deal.

The Republic of Panama won against a $20 million plus arbitration claim filed by US subsidiaries of Bridgestone Corporation under the US-Panama Trade Promotion Agreement.

In its August 14, 2020 award, a tribunal at the International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) dismissed the claim on the merits in its entirety and awarded reimbursement to Panama of $6.9 million in costs of the arbitration and of its defense.

According to the tribunal, the arbitration “put in issue the competence and integrity of the Supreme Court of Panama” in a Panamanian proceeding in which Bridgestone claimed it had been denied justice.

The Arnold & Porter team demonstrated that the Bridgestone claimants had not been denied justice. In fact, the tribunal found that Bridgestone had “over-reacted” to a loss in that Court and brought a hopeless arbitration case on the merits in which there was also “not a scintilla of evidence” of damages caused because the claimants’ damages theory was “built on sand.”

The Arnold & Porter team was led by international arbitration partners Whitney Debevoise (Picture), Gaela Gehring Flores and Mallory Silberman; and included associates Amy Endicott, Katelyn Horne, Michael Rodriguez and Brian Vaca. Tax partners Will Needle and Ben Berk and trademark partners Lou Ederer and Roberta Horton provided specialist advice.

Involved fees earner: Benjamin Berk – Arnold & Porter Kaye Scholer LLP; Whitney Debevoise II – Arnold & Porter Kaye Scholer LLP; Louis Ederer – Arnold & Porter Kaye Scholer LLP; Amy Endicott – Arnold & Porter Kaye Scholer LLP; Gaela K. Gehring Flores – Arnold & Porter Kaye Scholer LLP; Katelyn Horne – Arnold & Porter Kaye Scholer LLP; Roberta Horton – Arnold & Porter Kaye Scholer LLP; William Needle – Arnold & Porter Kaye Scholer LLP; Michael Rodríguez – Arnold & Porter Kaye Scholer LLP; Mallory Silberman – Arnold & Porter Kaye Scholer LLP; Brian Vaca – Arnold & Porter Kaye Scholer LLP;

Law Firms: Arnold & Porter Kaye Scholer LLP;

Clients: Republic Of Panama;

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Author: Ambrogio Visconti