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Craig Tevendale

London Africa Group Central Asia Group Kazakhstan Group

Craig is Head of our International Arbitration group in London and Head of Energy, UK. 

Craig leads our international arbitration group in London. He also has extensive experience in litigation, expert determination and mediation with a particular focus on disputes in the energy, leisure, construction, engineering, defence and telecommunications industries. His practice comprises multi-jurisdictional work subject to a wide range of governing laws.

Craig has acted in arbitrations as counsel, advocate and arbitrator in ad hoc proceedings and before all of the major arbitral institutions, including, in particular the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC), London Court of International Arbitration (LCIA) and the American Arbitration Association (AAA). He has also acted in complex litigation cases before the English High Court (including the Queen’s Bench, the Commercial Court, and the Technology and Construction Court) and the Court of Appeal.

His broader contribution to the arbitral community includes appointments to the ICC UK National Committee for Arbitration, to the ICC Commission upon the nomination of the ICC UK National Committee, and to the Advisory Committee of the Cairo Regional Centre for International Commercial Arbitration (CRCICA), and Deputy Chairman at the Advisory Committee to the Oman Arbitration Centre (OAC). He lectures at the University of London on energy law and arbitration, and is regularly published on arbitration, energy disputes and private international law.

Fluent in Arabic and French, Craig is frequently instructed in disputes arising from investments, projects and transactions in Africa and the Middle East.

Craig is regularly published on issues relating to private international law, arbitration and energy disputes. He has also been appointed in expert determination proceedings as an expert in English law.


"Craig Tevendale is head of the firm's London international arbitration team. He is widely recognised for his expertise in Middle Eastern-related arbitrations and is highly sought after by major oil and gas clients. Market quotes include: 'Craig is a superb advocate - he's immaculately prepared and gets across the case effectively.'; 'He's a very effective arbitration practitioner.'; and 'He's technically strong and is reasonable in his approach.' Chambers UK 2023 – International Arbitration – UK-wide

"Craig Tevendale is simply exceptional – world-class in every respect." Legal 500 UK 2023 – International Arbitration

Craig is ranked as a Leading Individual for International Arbitration Legal 500 UK 2023 – International Arbitration

Craig is lauded as "an outstanding advocate who runs a superbly efficient and effective team". (Who's Who Legal: Arbitration 2022)

"Leading Herbert Smith Freehills’ international arbitration group in London, Craig Tevendale is known amongst peers as a formidable and talented litigator. His fluency in English, French and Arabic has allowed him to work on significant matters across Africa including disputes arising from the aftermath of the “Arab Spring” in North African countries such as Algeria, Morocco, Egypt and Libya." Legal500 GC Powerlist: Private Practice Africa Specialists, 2019

"Craig Tevendale is an unflappable, excellent cross-examiner and advocate; he has total command of the material and gives clear advice that clients can use to make a decision" Legal 500 UK 2020: International Arbitration 

Craig is listed in Who's Who Legal Arbitration 2020 and Who's Who Legal Energy 2019

Recognised in the Legal 500's inaugural UK International Arbitration Powerlist (2019) and GC Powerlist: Private Practice Powerlist: Africa Specialists (2019)

Craig Tevendale leads the firm's UK international arbitration group and has notable expertise in Kazakhstan-related disputes. An impressed client reports: "His incredible legal skill, not only in arbitration but in mediation and amicable negotiations, is second to none." Chambers UK 2020: International Arbitration

Craig Tevendale leads the firm’s arbitration practice and regularly represents joint ventures and oil and gas operators in energy disputes, most notably those involving assets in the Middle East. Clients describe him as "very direct and tactically aware.” Chambers 2020 Energy & Natural Resources: Disputes - UK-wide

"Craig maintains a high-profile energy disputes and arbitration practice and represents some of the oil and gas industry's biggest companies." Chambers UK 2019: Energy & Natural Resources: Disputes - UK

Craig is a recommended lawyer and described as a 'key figure' for International Arbitration by Legal 500 UK 2019 – International Arbitration

Craig is a recommended lawyer for projects, energy & natural resources: oil & gas by Legal 500 UK 2019

Craig is described by sources as "a very proficient oil and gas lawyer who really understands the nuts and bolts of the business." Chambers UK 2019, Energy & Natural Resources: Oil & Gas


Fluent in Arabic and French, Craig has lived and studied in the Middle East and has a degree in Arabic (First Class Honours).

Experience & expertise

Selected matters

  • the sellers in an LNG price review arbitration against an Asian buyer under the SIAC rules, in disputes valued in excess of USD 6 billion
  • a consortium of leading multinational energy companies in UNCITRAL arbitration and expert determination proceedings against a Central Asian Republic. The case concerned budget and schedule disputes worth US$ 9 billion in a high-profile and politically significant dispute concerning one of the world's largest oil and gas projects
  • Multinational energy clients on fiscal disputes worth several billion dollars arising from the intervention of the Ministry of Finance in offshore PSA interests in a West African State
  • BP on contentious issues in contract and in tort, and in multiple jurisdictions and fora including the UK inquest proceedings, arising from the terrorist incident at the In Amenas gas facility in Algeria between 16-19 January 2013
  • Stagecoach plc in its successful £100 million Rail Industry Dispute Resolution arbitration against the UK Government, and in the successful defence of ancillary jurisdictional applications brought by the Secretary of State in the English Commercial Court in disputes concerning the South West Trains franchise in England
  • a multinational energy company on disputes with the Iraqi state and SOC concerning the imposition of environmental fines, tax and other value-extractive measures, in breach of the applicable Technical Services Contract and investment treaty protections
  • a major American defence manufacturer in American Arbitration Association proceedings relating to unpaid contractual royalty payments valued in excess of $300 million and involving separate jurisdictional, liability and quantum proceedings
  • a multinational trading company in a US$150 million ICC arbitration concerning the impact of compulsory price renegotiation through governmental regulation in the Indonesian coal industry, giving rise to complex issues of force majeure, contractual and common law termination rights, and the quantification of damages using the loss methodology
  • a multinational energy company in complex cost overrun and delay disputes worth more than US$1 billion relating to energy projects in Iran (onshore and offshore) and subject to ICC arbitration and Iranian law
  • as an expert in English law in an expert determination between two multinational energy companies concerning the proper construction of the cost recovery procedures in a joint operating agreement relating to hydrocarbon exploration and production offshore from the Philippines
  • a multinational energy company in a drilling rig dispute offshore The Falkland Islands valued in excess of US$100 million
  • a leading international law firm in an LCIA arbitration relating to its advice in an Islamic finance transaction, and in which significant reputational issues were at stake for our client
  • advising a group of international investors in an ICC arbitration concerning the Indian telecommunications market, in the context of a series of multi-party, multi-claim arbitrations against a background of ongoing litigation in New York and India
  • a multinational energy company in an ICC arbitration concerning performance issues at a US$700 million energy facility in Algeria subject to Algerian law