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23 Aug 2023

Commodities in Focus Weekly: Addax Energy SA v Petro Trade Inc


In Addax Energy S.A. v Petro Trade Inc1, the London Circuit Commercial Court was tasked with examining the parties' dealings over a number of years, ultimately finding that a course of dealing had been established and that written contracts sent by email recorded the terms that had already been agreed between the parties.

The case was unusual in that Petro Trade was not represented and did not appear at trial but had been represented by solicitors and counsel at an earlier (unsuccessful) hearing on jurisdiction2. The Court therefore had the benefit of Petro Trade's defence, two witness statements and a skeleton argument. In hearing the matter, the judge and counsel for Addax drew upon those documents, which assisted Addax in discharging its obligation to "present the case fairly"3 in Petro Trade's absence.

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1 https://www.bailii.org/ew/cases/EWHC/Comm/2023/1609.html

2 Before Mrs Justice Cockerill - https://www.bailii.org/ew/cases/EWHC/Comm/2022/237.html

3 See paragraph 9 of the judgment in which David Elvin KC quotes Simon Rainey QC, sitting as a Deputy High Court Judge in Hirbodan Management Co v Cummins Power Generation Ltd [2021] EWHC 3315 (Comm) on a party's obligations in this respect. 



Rebecca Crookenden

Rebecca Crookenden
Managing associate

T:  +65 6622 9560 M:  Email Rebecca | Vcard Office:  Singapore