Advising states in their progressive enterprises

Dechert represents states and state-owned entities in complex capital markets transactions, high-profile international arbitrations and infrastructure finance. Our lawyers also advise on EU regulatory compliance and conduct negotiations in EU treaty cases. Dechert draws upon its decades-long relationships with ministries and central banks to serve as trusted adviser to sovereign states around the world.

Sovereign and quasi-sovereign debt issuances 

Dechert has a market-leading practice in the representation of issuers and underwriters in sovereign/quasi-sovereign debt issuances. Our team has acted on more than 100 sovereign debt issuances and, in the past five years, on sovereign debt issuances in an aggregate principal amount of more than US$50 billion. Notably, we have acted on sovereign Eurobond issuances for Albania, Bahrain, Barbados, Egypt, Georgia, Jordan, Lebanon, Morocco and Tunisia. We also represent numerous quasi-sovereign issuers, including JSC Development Bank of Kazakhstan and JSC Georgian Railway. 

Dechert has a standout team covering the emerging markets, with deep experience in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) and Mediterranean Basin. Team members are credited with pioneering the development of the MENA capital markets, and have structured numerous ‘market first’ transactions for states, including, among many others, local currency-denominated issuances.

Dechert won the ‘Banking and Finance Team of the Year’ at Legal Week’s 2017 Middle East Legal Awards for its representation of the Arab Republic of Egypt in multi-billion, multi-tranche issuances under its Global Medium Term Note Program. It also won ‘Sub Investment Grade Bond/Sukuk Deal of the Year’ at GFC Media Group’s 2017 Bonds, Loans and Sukuk Awards. International capital markets lead partner Camille Abousleiman was honored with a 'Lifetime Achievement Award' by International Financial Law Review in 2017 and was named a ‘2018 Dealmaker of the Year’ by The American Lawyer

International arbitration

Dechert’s International Arbitration Practice is widely recognized for acting in international arbitrations involving states and state entities. As noted by Legal 500 Latin America 2014, our “unparalleled experience” and “understanding of States’ actions” place us “among the best law firms in investment treaty arbitration.” 

Our team has a long history of successfully advising clients in international arbitration involving States and State entities, both in commercial and in investment arbitrations. We have handled some of the leading arbitrations brought to date, and we have a formidable track record acting as counsel under all major arbitration rules with a vast range of governing laws and venues.  

Infrastructure development and project finance

Dechert advises states on innovative project finance transactions. Our lawyers draw upon their experience representing commercial banks, sponsors, funds, underwriters and many other participants in capital-intensive projects and facilities around the world. We have considerable expertise advising clients in relation to planning matters including site appraisals, major planning applications, environmental impact assessments, highways, waterways and licensing matters, planning and infrastructure agreements and environmental indemnities. 

We have experience in developing and negotiating design and construction contracts and regularly bring this expertise to bear in relation to infrastructure transactions. We also have experience in managing proceedings concerning claims litigation and alternative dispute resolution and handle the formation and operation of infrastructure funds, including those focused on emerging markets.

EU regulation and government affairs

Our lawyers advise governments, trade associations and companies that operate in Europe or trade with European counterparts on compliance with a wide range of legal and regulatory requirements. We help clients navigate the complex network of regulation, legislation and standards that govern EU and broader global policymaking, and work to minimize the potential negative impact of current and future European regulation on their business activities. We develop persuasive legal, political and economic challenges to the status quo or plans for reform as well as effective influencing campaigns that target EU decision-makers, challenge EU Member States’ implementation of EU rules through infringement proceedings and handle legal and policy requirements for EU regulatory approvals and licenses.


Sovereign debt issuance

  • The Arab Republic of Egypt in the establishment of its US$20 billion global medium term note program and issuances thereunder in an aggregate principal amount of US$12.5 billion in U.S. dollar-denominated issuances and €2 billion in euro denominated issuances.
  • The Kingdom of Bahrain in bond and sukuk issuances in an aggregate principal amount of US$4 billion. Each sukuk was structured as a combined ijarah and murabaha transaction.
  • Banque Centrale de Tunisie on all of its Eurobond issuances, acting on behalf of the Republic of Tunisia, since 2012, in an aggregate principal amount of €850 million in Euro-denominated issuances and US$2.5 billion in U.S. dollar denominated issuances, as well as US$985 million in aggregate principal amount of U.S.-guaranteed bond issuances.
  • The Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan in its inaugural and all follow-on Eurobond issuances in an aggregate principal amount of US$2.75 billion, as well as US$3.25 billion in aggregate principal amount of U.S.-guaranteed bond issuances.
  • The Kingdom of Morocco in its inaugural and all follow-on Eurobond issuances in an aggregate principal amount of €2.5 billion in Euro-denominated issuances and US$2.25 billion in U.S. Dollar-denominated issuances.
  • The Lebanese Republic on all sovereign bond issuances since 1995, including issuances and exchange offers under the Lebanese Republic’s US$34 billion global medium-term note programme.

International arbitration

  • The Czech Republic in its victory against a British investor in a PCA-UNCITRAL arbitration arising from the privatization process of a former Czech state company.
  • The Plurinational State of Bolivia on settling a treaty claim at The Hague brought by a German-Peruvian oil consortium for US$16 million – around half of what the claimants wanted.
  • The Republic of Colombia in its defense of a major UNCITRAL arbitration against a foreign mining company concerning a gold mine, the environment and indigenous communities. 
  • The Republic of Ecuador in the annulment phase of an ICSID arbitration by reducing the damages by 40%, in what became the biggest annulment of an ICSID award.
  • An Asian State as claimant in two successfully completed ICC commercial arbitrations against French defense companies.
  • A European State in an ICC arbitration concerning several Dispute Adjudication Board decisions, in connection with the construction of a bridge.
  • A Brazilian national oil company in an ICC arbitration against a Libyan State entity in an ICC arbitration arising out of alleged defects in artesian wells drilled as part of the Great Man-Made River project, one of the largest engineering projects ever undertaken.
  • A Central American State in two ICC commercial arbitration arising from the electricity sector. 

Infrastructure development and project finance

  • Caspian Pipeline Consortium on a variety of matters for this consortium whose major shareholder include the Russian and Kazakhstan governments, including on government procurement rules, financing and various infrastructure issues.
  • European Bank for Reconstruction and Development on its proposed KZT1.2 billion loan to State Communal Enterprise "Heating Water Networks and Wastewater" to modernize district heating and hot water supply.
  • A European EPC contractor on EPC issues in relation to the F2 independent water and power plant in Fujairah (a project overseen by ADWEA of Abu Dhabi).
  • ICA Panama S. A., an affiliate of Mexico’s Empresa ICA, Mexico’s largest construction company, in a US$150 million refinancing of the Coredor Sur road concession in Panama involving an issuance by the Corredor Sur Trust.
  • International Finance Corporation on a RUB450 million partial credit guarantee by IFC on bond of RUB1 billion issued by the Republic of Chuvashia for road construction and water supply financing, an unusual deal in that IFC was guaranteeing a government bond issued for infrastructure projects.
  • A Korean municipality on drafting and negotiating a lump sum bespoke contract for consultancy services for the design of a tidal power plant in Korea for a Korean municipality.
  • Various quasi-governmental entities in the Emirate of Ras Al Khaimah in respect of power sector issues (including the disposal of generating assets and the development of greenfield IPPs/IWPPs).
  • The Republic of Lebanon on the restructuring of its power and water sectors.
  • A UAE quasi-governmental entity on a world-class, project-financed chemical sector infrastructure project in Uzbekistan.