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Republic of Croatia Defeats €300 Million ICSID Claim

May 31, 2023
Latham secures thumping victory for the Republic of Croatia against golf resort investors.

Latham & Watkins has successfully defended the Republic of Croatia in an investment treaty claim relating to the potential development of several golf courses, hotels, villas, and other luxury facilities overlooking the World Heritage Site of the Old City of Dubrovnik.

The arbitration was initially brought by a Dutch investment vehicle, Elitech BV, in 2017 under the Croatia-Netherlands BIT, although a follow-on, mirror claim was subsequently lodged by the ultimate owner in 2020 under the Croatia-Israel BIT. The Elitech claimants argued that the Republic of Croatia had unfairly denied the investors the approvals necessary to develop the golf resort and failed to provide the investors effective means of legal recourse to pursue their rights in Croatia. The Elitech investors claimed over €300 million along with pre and post award interest.

Latham secured a victory in the Elitech arbitration, with the arbitral tribunal finding that Croatia was not liable in any way and that the claim for damages should be rejected.

Latham’s arbitration team was led by London partner, Charles Claypoole, retired Hamburg partner Sebastian Seelmann-Eggebert, with associates Shreya Ramesh in London, and Christian Steger and Lisa Hoops in Hamburg.