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Stéphane Brabant


Stéphane is global co-chair of Africa, chair of mining and co-head of business & human rights.



Stéphane has over 30 years of experience as a projects and transactional lawyer, primarily in the mining and energy sectors in Africa, with a particular focus on the structuring of complex investments between multinationals and States, crisis prevention and management and dispute resolution (including arbitration).

Stéphane has also built a strong practice advising businesses on their environmental, social and governance (ESG) strategies and how they can align their activities with the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).  He  was one of the experts advising John Ruggie (former UN Special Representative of the Secretary General on the issue of human rights and transnational corporations and other business enterprises) on the human rights capacity building obligations and responsibilities of States and multinationals.  He has also built a strong understanding of Blockchain and its value in enabling traceability in supply chains.

Legal guides consistently rank Stéphane in the top tier. He is the only lawyer singled out by Chambers Global for its highest "Senior Statesman" ranking for Africa-wide Projects & Energy and received a "Lifetime Achievement Award" at the Chambers Africa Awards 2021 in recognition of his contribution to the legal profession and to the practice of law across the African continent. He is also ranked by Chambers Global in band 1 for Global-wide Business & Human Rights.

Stéphane is a member of the Advisory Board of the Business & Human Rights Project of the American Bar Association's Center for Human Rights; as well as a member of the Social Impacts, Project Affected Communities and Indigenous Peoples organisations of the Chamber of the Hydropower Sustainability Assessment Council. He is also a former co-Chair of the International Bar Association's CSR work group.

Stephane’s recent experience includes advising:

  • CMOC on its US$2.65 billion acquisition of Freeport's indirect 56% interest in the world-class Tenke Fungurume copper-cobalt mine in DRC, including comprehensive legal due diligence in close liaison with local counsel
  • Rio Tinto on numerous aspects of its Simandou iron ore integrated mining and infrastructure project in Guinea
  • B2Gold on various matters (both contentious and non-contentious) relating to its Fekola Project in Mali
  • international oil and gas companies on a tax dispute (subsequently resolved) in Africa which led to a threat of expulsion and the temporary suspension of our clients' activities in the relevant country
  • international clients on crisis management and pre-contentious matters in Francophone Africa across a range of industry sectors (mining, oil and gas, power, telecoms, consumer goods etc)