Commodities

Our team of commodities lawyers reflects the needs of today’s global trading industry and includes experts in all areas of international trade. We have extensive experience of the full commodities cycle from raw material to end use and offer a comprehensive range of advisory, transactional and contentious services to clients across the supply chain.
  • Profile
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Our commodities team advise on issues relating to the full range of physical and financial commodities classes - particularly coal, metal ores and minerals, oil and gas (including LNG), renewable energy and soft commodities.

Our clients include mining groups, international oil and gas companies, trading houses, banks, power and utility companies, industrial groups and manufacturers, insurance companies, funds and private equity houses.

We have extensive experience in complex cross-jurisdictional disputes and our lawyers have represented clients in arbitrations under all the major international rules (ICC, LMAA, LCIA, UNCITRAL, SIAC, CIETAC and HIAC), as well as before commodity trade tribunals (including LME, GAFTA and FOSFA).

We can help you with:

  • long term supply and off-take agreements
  • spot and master trading agreements
  • standard form contracts (including SCoTA and EFET annexes)
  • futures and derivatives (including ISDA and FFAs)
  • bills of lading, charterparties and COAs
  • cargo loss and damage
  • storage and warehousing
  • ports and logistics contracts
  • inventory and “repo” financing
  • documentary credits and standby letters of credit
  • regulation and compliance
  • corporate and tax
  • fraud and asset recovery
  • sanctions advice.

"An excellent understanding of, and wealth of experience in, the coal and metals trading markets."
The Legal 500 UK 2022

Mercuria vs Citibank – commodity “repo” dispute

Acting for Mercuria in their successful defence of a headline-making US$270 million claim, relating to “repo” deals affected by a major metals warehousing fraud in China.

Mining – LCIA arbitrations

Acting for one of the world's largest copper mines in a dispute with a contractor.

Off-shore oil and gas

Acting for one of the world's largest oil companies in disputes with drilling and other offshore contractors.

London Metal Exchange (LME)

Advising Traderight on investments by joint venture signatories, in order to secure membership of the London Metal Exchange (LME).

Metal Concentrates – LCIA arbitrations

Advising mining group in a series of quality and other disputes with a major trading company relating to the supply of copper, lead and zinc concentrates.

Coal - price review arbitration

Advising a major power company in a dispute with an international mining group regarding the pricing and price review mechanism under a long term supply agreement.

Oil and gas terminal/storage related advice

Advising on establishing a shipping fuel storage facility. This was an on and offshore port facility in East Africa, in partnership with the host government on behalf of a significant player in the commodities industry.

LNG supply agreement

Advising a major power and utility group on 20-year LNG supply contract.

Biomass – precedent supply and freight contracts

Drafting suite of precedent supply contracts, charterparties and contracts of affreightment for a major UK energy company.

Dairy Products - “repo” agreement

Advising a major Australian bank on a “repo” transaction for powdered milk stored in European warehouses.

Sulphuric acid – quality dispute

Advising a major zinc producer in a quality dispute with one of the world’s largest fertiliser traders over a series of contracts for the sale of sulphuric acid.

Cocoa beans – "repo" Agreement

Advising a major Australian bank on a “repo” transaction for cocoa beans stored in European warehouses and Ghanaian warehouses.

Oil and gas – Sale contract chain dispute

Advising and managing complex multi-party High Court disputes relating to the delivery of off-spec product.

Soybean dispute

Advising a major Swiss soft commodities trading company in a GAFTA dispute with a German soybean trader related to unpaid fees.

FOSFA arbitration

Advised a Mozambique-based food production company in a FOSFA arbitration in Durban, South Africa, against a leading Indian flour trading company. The claim was for US$5 million.

Latest news & insights

11 Apr 2024

From Insights

Commodities in Focus Weekly - Issue 73

Ayhan Sezer Yag ve Gida Endustrisi Ticaret Ltd Sirket v Agroinvest SA – London Circuit Commercial Court clarifies meaning of "date of default" under GAFTA Default clau..

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04 Apr 2024

From Insights

Commodities in Focus Weekly - Cargo claims: how to mitigate your losses

In AMS Ameropa Marketing Sales AG & Anor v Ocean Unity Navigation Inc [2023] EWHC 3264, a case relating to damage to a cargo of yellow soybeans, the High Court of Engl..

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28 Mar 2024

From Insights

Commodities in Focus Weekly - Issue 71

Can the Court order parties to mediate? The Court of Appeal rules in Churchill v Merthyr Tydfil

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14 Mar 2024

From Insights

Commodities in Focus Weekly - Issue 69

Limitation clauses: construction and reasonableness – Tornado Wire Limited v John Good Logistics Limited [2024] EWHC 212 (KB)

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06 Mar 2024

From Insights

Commodities in Focus Weekly - Issue 68

Latest Court of Appeal judgment on English Courts' jurisdiction to grant anti-suit injunctions in support of foreign arbitrations - UniCredit Bank GmbH v RusChemAllian..

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29 Feb 2024

From Insights

Commodities in Focus Weekly - Issue 67

(1) JB Cocoa Sdn Bhd (2) JB Foods Global Pte Ltd (3) Baloise Belgium Nv/Sa (4) XL Insurance Company SE, Succursale Francais v Maersk Line AS (t/a Safmarine) [2023] EWH..

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22 Feb 2024

From Insights

Commodities in Focus Weekly: Sustainability in supply chains: New regulations on Forest Risk Commodities

Commodities such as beef, leather, palm oil, cocoa and soy have been identified as some of the key drivers of deforestation, accounting for an estimated 64% of the UK'..

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15 Feb 2024

From Insights

Commodities in Focus Weekly: A quick guide to contractual break-ups - Guidance on termination

Issues arising out of the termination of contracts are not in short supply. We are often presented with clients who are seeking advice on whether to terminate a contra..

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31 Jan 2024

From Insights

Commodities in Focus Weekly: The Polar: Herculito Maritime Ltd and others v Gunvor International BV and others

The Supreme Court handed down its judgment recently in Herculito Maritime Ltd v. Gunvor International BV [2024] UKSC 2 , also known as "The Polar".

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24 Jan 2024

From Insights

Commodities in Focus Weekly: Issue 62

Premier Oil UK Limited v Shell International Trading and Shell Company Limited (for and on behalf of Shell Trading International Limited)

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17 Jan 2024

From Insights

Commodities in Focus Weekly: Market abuse and commodities

Justin McClelland and Maeve Mohan consider market abuse in the commodities sector and the recent changes to the regulatory landscape which have led to an increase in e..

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11 Jan 2024

From Insights

Commodities in Focus Weekly: Risk management issues in the context of bribery and corruption and how to deal with them

Partner Justin McClelland and associate Maeve Mohan from Stephenson Harwood's commercial litigation team in London consider the bribery and corruption risks faced by o..

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20 Dec 2023

From Insights

Commodities in Focus Weekly: Singapore Court of Appeal allows Crédit Agricole to recover under LOI after Zenrock's letter of credit fraud

In its recent judgment in Crédit Agricole Corporate & Investment Bank, Singapore Branch v PPT Energy Trading Co Ltd and another appeal [2023] SGCA(I) 7, the Singapore ..

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13 Dec 2023

From Insights

Commodities in Focus Weekly: Singapore Court of Appeal decision in Kuvera Resources Pte Ltd v JPMorgan Chase Bank, NA

It is increasingly common for parties to include as an additional term of the contract a clause that gives a party the right to either suspend or terminate a payment o..

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05 Dec 2023

From Insights

London Metal Exchange wins High Court ruling over cancelled nickel trades

On 29 November 2023, the Administrative Court handed down its judgment in the case of Elliott Associates L.P. and other and Jane Street Global Trading v The London Met..

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