Clean Energy Transition In recent years, we have seen big structural changes in the commodities and energy sectors. There has been an emerging bulwark in the clean energy transition to renewables. 2021 looks set to be a year of further stimulus to that transition, given:
- President Biden’s $2 trillion Clean Power Plan to supercharge the push into clean energy investments.
- The drive towards nuclear energy in the Middle East, China, India, Japan, Korea and other nations after a temporary hiatus since the Fukushima accident in 2011.
- Taiwan becoming a hub for commercial offshore wind, and China being the world leader in wind power and aiming to power c.290 million homes by 2030.
- Laos has tapped strongly into hydropower, and the Philippines into geothermal sources.
- The Australia-ASEAN Power Link project developing the world’s largest solar farm worth 16 billion dollars. The large-scale floating solar platform project in Tengah Reservoir in Singapore.
- Even the oil majors are investing significantly into cleaner sources of energy.
Wind, Solar, Geothermal, Nuclear – these appear to be the new catchphrases in this new century. But what useful lessons can we draw from past experiences that can be applied to these evolving areas, and what shadows lurk beneath the surface? Perhaps more pertinently, what is the role of lawyers and in-house counsel - managers and mitigators of legal risk whose job is to support this push and help resolve disputes that will inevitably arise?
International Trade In Commodities (Oil & Gas)
Globalisation and the intertwining of economies have led to a substantial increase in cross-border commodity trading. At the same time, the COVID-19 pandemic seems to have shifted the focus of legal issues in the commodity world. Commodities trading law is always evolving, rapidly-changing and often complex. Hence, in addition to specialised legal knowledge, lawyers require specialised industry knowledge, skills and experience in handling and addressing legal and dispute issues in the day-to day business activities of trading houses. With increasing reports of compliance lapses in commodities trading, one of the ways to protect business owners is to be aware of the potential legal issues in any spectrum of the value chain and to find solutions to that. In this segment, we will focus on the commonly-faced legal issues and disputes in commodity trading, how we can avoid the pitfalls that may occur and how to minimise the risk of dispute. Areas touched on will include “battle of the forms”, termination, force majeure, sanctions, bankers’ letter of credit, quantity and quality claims and timing.
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