Subject: anti-suit injunctions; declaratory relief; arbitration
The claimant and defendant were parties to a contract of sale containing an English law and arbitration clause. Following an alleged breach of the contract by the defendant, the claimant commenced arbitration under the contract claiming damages. The defendant responded by bringing proceedings before the Bangladeshi courts claiming a declaration of non-liability under the contract, and an anti-suit injunction to prevent the claimant from continuing with the arbitration. The defendant also applied for and obtained an interim anti-suit injunction from the Bangladeshi court.
The claimant in turn commenced the present Commercial Court proceedings seeking an anti-anti-suit injunction requiring the defendant to discontinue the Bangladeshi proceedings and prohibiting the defendant from prosecuting any other claim under the contract in the Bangladeshi courts, together with related declaratory relief.
Granting the relief sought, Hamblen J held (inter alia) that while the English court should be cautious before granting an anti-suit injunction in mandatory terms, such an order was appropriate in this case in light of the nature of the defendant’s conduct, and the fact that an injunction in purely negative terms would not have been effective. It was also held that the fact that the Bangladeshi court had already granted an anti-suit injunction against the claimant did not preclude the grant of an anti-anti-suit injunction by the English court.
Luke Pearce appeared for the Claimant.