Adrian Hughes KCBarrister at 39 Essex ChambersSpeaker
Adrian Hughes KC acts as counsel and arbitrator with a broad international and UK construction and commercial practice. He focuses on complex contract disputes spanning a wide range of sectors, including construction and engineering, energy, international trade, shipbuilding, transport and professional negligence.
Whilst his domestic practice centres on the Technology & Construction Court and the Commercial Court, much of his work involves international arbitration and associated court proceedings. He regularly conducts commercial and construction arbitration work as counsel in many different jurisdictions. Recent cases have included major international arbitrations arising from power and infrastructure projects in North Africa, the Middle East and Asia, with seats in London, Hong Kong, Singapore, Malaysia, Dubai and China.
Adrian increasingly sits as Arbitrator in international disputes, appointed by all the main international institutions. He also acts as chairman and member of dispute boards for international construction projects as well as Mediator and Adjudicator.
He has a leading practice relating to China and regularly conducts advocacy and advisory work for Chinese law firms and clients. Recent cases have included a number of prominent international arbitration and court cases in, and related to, China. He is instructed as expert to the Great Britain China Centre / Foreign Office on UK / China Arbitration and Dispute Resolution, and is on the advisory board of the Oxford University Belt and Road Institute directed at the impact of China's outbound investment policy. He acts as expert witness on English law issues and was the first English barrister to act in this capacity in Chinese commercial court proceedings.
His early practice included extensive Supreme Court and Commercial Court proceedings arising from the collapse of the International Tin Council, involving issues of public and private international law relating to the enforceability of arbitration awards against an international organisation and its Member States. This experience carries through to public and private international law issues arising in his current work.
He sits as a part time judge, having for a number of years acted as Recorder and Examiner of the Court, and has recently been appointed to the Court of Appeal of the Falkland Islands and South Georgia. He has been a Chairman of the UK Society of Construction Law (SCL), the country's leading multi-disciplinary construction law association.