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Case details

Republic of Kazakhstan (Appellant) v Terra Raf Trans Trading Ltd (Respondent) (Gibraltar)

Case ID: JCPC 2022/0092

Jurisdiction: Court of Appeal for Gibraltar

Case summary


Are costs orders made by the English High Court in relation to proceedings to enforce a foreign arbitral award registrable in Gibraltar?


This appeal concerns the registration in Gibraltar of certain costs orders made by the English High Court.

Terra Raf Trans Traiding Limited ("Terra") is a company incorporated in Gibraltar which alleges that it (with others, together referred to as the "Stati Parties") invested considerable sums into oil and gas exploration and production businesses in Kazakhstan. The Stati Parties subsequently obtained an arbitration of over USD 500 million against Kazakhstan under the Energy Charter Treaty on the basis that it had acted unlawfully in revoking the business' oil and gas licences. Kazakhstan has not paid the award and alleges it was procured by fraud.

The Stati Parties sought to enforce the arbitration award in England (among other jurisdictions). However, Kazakhstan challenged enforcement in England on the basis that it would be contrary to public police because the award had been obtained by fraud. The Stati Parties ultimately discontinued their attempts to enforce the award in England and undertook not to pursue any further enforcement proceedings in England in respect of the award. The Stati Parties were subsequently ordered to pay Kazakhstan's costs of the English enforcement proceedings (the "English Costs Orders"). The Stati Parties have not done so.

Kazakhstan applied, without notice to the Stati Parties, to have the English Costs Orders registered as judgments of the Supreme Court of Gibraltar under Gibraltar's Judgments (Reciprocal Enforcement) Act 1935 (the "Judgments Act"). The registration was initially granted following an ex parte hearing. However, following challenge by the Stati Parties this registration was set aside on the basis that the English Costs Orders fell within an exception in section 3(2A)(c) of the Judgments Act which prevents registration of foreign judgments which are themselves given in proceedings for the enforcement of another foreign judgment.

Kazakhstan appealed to the Court of Appeal for Gibraltar arguing that section 3(2A)(c) of the Judgments Act does not prevent registration of the English Costs Orders. The Court of Appeal dismissed the appeal but granted leave to appeal to the Privy Council as of right.



Republic of Kazakhstan


Terra Raf Trans Trading Ltd



Lord Lloyd-Jones, Lord Hamblen, Lord Leggatt, Lady Rose, Lord Richards

Hearing start date

24 October 2023

Hearing finish date

24 October 2023

Watch hearing
24 October 2023 Morning session Afternoon session