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International Bar Association’s 2015 Annual ConferenceBenoit Le Bars panelist


Benoit_Le_BarsBenoit Le Bars, Managing Partner, will be a panelist during the International Bar Association’s 2015 Annual Conference taking place at the Austria Center, Vienna on 4-9 October.

Benoit Le Bars will take part on Mediation Committee – Oil and Gas Law Committee, dedicated to “Past, present and future of mediation in the energy, oil and gas industry” taking place on 7 October.

At the panel discussion, Benoit Le Bars will share his views and personal experiences on whether mediation is an effective mode of resolution of complex disputes of the energy, oil and gas sector.  Panelists will explore the various means of promoting the use of alternative dispute resolution techniques for the settlement of disputes in the energy sector.  Benoit will be joined on the Panel by other eminent individuals with significant experience in the legal and oil and gas sector.  Given the impressive profiles of the panelists and the fact that the discussion revolves round a relatively unexplored area of alternative dispute resolution, the panel discussion promises to be a dynamic and informative session.

Download here the IBA commitee sheet.


Mediation Committee – (Lead)
Oil and Gas Law Committee

Session / Workshop chair(s)

Jean-André Diaz Total SA, Paris, France; Secretary Energy, Environment, Natural Resources and Infrastructure Law Section

Jawad Sarwana Abraham & Sarwana, Karachi, Pakistan; Senior Vice Chair Mediation Committee


Mediation is certainly a hot topic today. The wish to avoid litigation or arbitration is certainly a major factor in a world where all parties are seeking to save money and trying to explore avenues to do business rather than lose time and energy fighting legal battles. Mediation appears to meet those expectations, but what is happening on the ground?

The energy, oil and gas industry offers a good illustration to try to explore this inquiry: is mediation used effectively in light of the types of disputes this sector generates? Is it actually paying out and working? If so, why can’t we hear more about this Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) and its success in this field? How frequently can one find such clauses in contracts, including, inter alia, concession contracts and BITs?

The experience gathered by in-house counsels and counsels for oil and gas companies, as well as from state agencies, such us OPEC, dealing with this area, will give the audience a better grasp of the use of mediation in this industry.

A few practical examples will also be shared by those with unique insight, to explain how negotiations/mediations actually work in this sector, whether with a positive or negative outcome. Equally important is to have some comparative perspectives, with practitioners coming from regions where those disputes arise or may arise, including Africa and Asia.

Against this context, the panelists will explore all possible avenues to improve the use of ADR, notably mediation, in the particular industry of energy, oil and gas disputes.

This session will also include a mock case. Delegates are encouraged to read the mock case available on the IBA Annual Conference website.


Kehinde Aina Aina Blankson LP, Lagos, Nigeria

Laurence Burger Landolt & Koch, Geneva, Switzerland; Co-Chair State Mediation Subcommittee

Robert Gaitskell Keating Chambers, London, England

Sophie Lamb Debevoise & Plimpton LLP, London, England; Publications Officer Oil and Gas Law Committee

Benoit Le Bars Lazareff Le Bars, Paris, France


Rooms 1.61 & 1.62, Level 1


Wednesday 7 October (0930 – 1230)