Court to Decide Authority over LIA by March

The Commercial Court in London has deferred a decision on the question of who has authority over the $67-billion Libyan Investment Authority (LIA).

Hassan Bouhadi, Chairman of the Malta-based Board of Directors, which is controlled by the internationally recognised government in Tobruk, had filed an application to fast-track a decision on which of the rival Governments has legitimate authority.

The court has ruled that the UK's Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) is to be consulted, and a decision is to be made by March 2016.

Following the ruling, Mr Bouhadi said:

“The recent announcement on the progress towards a Government of National Accord is good news ... In the meantime, the LIA still needs legal confirmation; we must still look to the Court to provide this.

“I’m pleased the LIA now has a clear way forward to resolve these authority issues in a timely fashion, and with the knowledge that its interests in the London litigations are protected in the meantime through the receivership secured this summer.”

Meanwhile AbdulMagid Breish, Tripoli-based Chairman and CEO of the LIA, said:

"We welcome Mr Justice Flaux’s indication that he will reject Mr Bouhadi’s application for the English High Court to fast-track a decision on which government is the legitimate government of Libya.

"If indeed the High Court is to consider this, complex issues of Libyan law, the fluid political situation in the country and the views of the UK Government, particularly the Foreign Office, must be examined in full.”

The two sides had recently agreed to appoint a receiver to represent the company in its case against Goldman Sachs and Societe Generale (SocGen).

(Court image via Shutterstock)

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