OUR TEAM

Senior Partner:

Mr. Khalid Anwer (Senior Advocate, Supreme Court of Pakistan)

Mr. Khalid Anwer, Barrister-at-law, holds degrees in economics and law and is a graduate of St. John's College, University of Cambridge.

Mr. Khalid Anwer started his legal career in 1962 and rose to prominence quickly. He became a partner at A. K. Brohi & Co. (as the firm was previously known) with Late Mr. A. K. Brohi who was a leading lawyer of his time and one of the greatest lawyers in the history of Pakistan.

Mr. Khalid Anwer has been involved in several landmark constitutional and commercial cases. Mr. Anwer appeared for ex-Prime Minister Mr. Nawaz Sharif to successfully challenge the dismissal of his government by the then President Ghulam Ishaq Khan. He thereafter appeared on behalf of the President of Pakistan to successfully defend the dismissal of the second government of Mohtarma Benazir Bhutto. He was also engaged to challenge the military takeover by the then Chief of Army Staff General Pervez Musharraf. He persuaded the Supreme Court to lay down a road map for the restoration of democracy and a three year time limit for holding fresh elections. Furthermore, there is a plethora of landmark reported commercial decisions in which Mr. Anwer has successfully represented clients in the Supreme Court or the High Courts.

Mr. Anwer was elected as a Senator in 1997 and thereafter took oath as the Federal Minister for Law, Justice & Human Rights. While in office, Mr. Anwer conceived and developed Pakistan's request to the Asian Development Bank in revamping the entire legal system of Pakistan. The proposal was accepted and it culminated in the ADB's Access to Justice Program which has a budget of $350,000,000.

Mr. Anwer appears regularly before the Superior Courts in various high-profile constitutional, commercial and civil matters.


Senior Counsel:

Mr. Syed Afsar Ali Abidi (Advocate, Supreme Court of Pakistan)

Mr. Abidi started his legal career in 1962. He has appeared regularly before the Superior Courts of Pakistan in his career which spans over five decades. He appears in arbitration, banking and civil law matters. In particular, he has an extraordinary command over civil law and procedure.

Mr. Abidi is a life-member of the Supreme Court Bar Association.


Partners:

Mr. Raashid Anwer (Advocate Supreme Court of Pakistan)

Mr. Raashid Anwer is the Managing Partner of the firm.He has graduated from Cornell University and his experience of appearing before the Superior Courts of Pakistan spans almost a decade and a half. He deals, inter alia, in civil, commercial, constitutional, tax, labour and employment matters. Mr. Raashid Anwer has, inter alia, appeared before the Superior Courts in the following high-profile matters:

(a) He appeared for Allied Bank Limited before the Sindh High Court and was able to persuade the Hon’ble Court to execute a Judgment / Decree in favour of the Bank for an amount of Rs. 2.4 Billion by ordering the sale of the assets of the Judgment-Debtor. This, in monetary terms, is, quite probably, the largest judgment ever given in favour of a financial institution by the Sindh High Court.

(b) He is currently representing several of the leading cement manufacturing companies (including Lucky Cement and D.G. Khan Cement which are the two largest cement manufacturers in Pakistan) before the Lahore High Court against the decision of the Competition Commission of Pakistan to impose a fine of over Rs. 3 Billion against some of our clients.

(c) He appeared on behalf of the downstream value added textile sector in Writ Petitions filed before the Lahore High Court by the exporters of cotton yarn against the quotas imposed by the Government of Pakistan on the export of cotton yarn and successfully persuaded the High Court to uphold the restrictions imposed by the Government.

(d) He is also appearing for a leading foreign steel company (i.e. Al-Tuwairqi Steel Mills Limited) which is setting up a $200 Million steel project in relation to a writ petition filed by the Karachi Electric Supply Corporation in which they have sought to restrain the Hyderabad Electric Supply Corporation from supplying 180 MW of electricity to our client (who will then become the single largest electricity consumer in the entire country).

(e) He is currently representing the National Industrial Parks Development and Management Company as well as its parent institution the Pakistan Industrial Development Corporation (PIDC) in three very hotly contested suits in the Sindh High Court. The cases involve title to a very large piece of land situated right at the entrance of the planned Industrial Park located in Korangi, Karachi. It may be noted that the total estimated cost of developing this Industrial Park is approximately Three Billion Rupees.

Mr. Raashid Anwer has, inter alia, been involved in the following advisory/ transactional work as well:

(a) He has advised clients on a wide range of corporate issues including privatisation projects, joint venture agreements, mergers/acquisitions and other complex commercial transactions as well. Clients whom he has advised and/or represented in Court (on behalf of our Firm) include Procter and Gamble, Gillette, Schlumberger, Toyota, Rolls Royce, Novartis, EMC, AIG/New Hampshire Insurance Company, the State Bank of Pakistan, the Karachi Stock Exchange, the Central Depository Company, three out of the five largest Pakistani commercial banks (National Bank, MCB Bank and Allied Bank), the three largest textile groups in Pakistan (Nishat Mills, Gul Ahmed Textile Mills, Sapphire Textile Mills), the two largest cement companies in Pakistan (Lucky Cement and D.G. Khan Cement), PTCL and the two major players in the cellular phone market (Mobilink and Ufone). He has also advised clients in relation to various aspects of project finance and/or restructuring including (but not limited to) representing the Lender of Davis Powergen Ltd. which is an IPP being set up in Jhang, Punjab.

(b) He has also advised clients in relation to various aspects of project finance and/or restructuring including representing the Lenders of Davis Powergen Ltd. which is an IPP being set up in Jhang, Punjab as well as advising the acquirers of the two AES power plants in Pakistan.

(c) He had earlier advised the purchasers of AES Pak-Gen Ltd well.

(d) He has advised the Dewan Group in its negotiations with the Steering Committee set up by the State Bank to deal with the largest bank default in Pakistan’s history.

(e) He has advised on the merger of the Asset Management Companies of MCB Bank and Arif Habib Investments, and the corporate restructuring (involving both mergers as well as demergers) of a number of large corporate groups including the Sapphire Group and the IBL Group.

(f) He has also advised the Government of Pakistan (as well as several trade associations) in relation to international trade issues vis a vis the European Union. In 2005, he was requested to accompany (and brief) the Pakistani Prime Minister prior to his negotiations in Brussels for accession to the European Union’s Generalised System of Preferences (GSP) scheme. In addition, he has also been asked to make presentations at several bilateral meetings between the Government of Pakistan and the British Department of Trade & Industry as well the Italian Trade Ministry.

(g) He has also successfully represented the largest Pakistani exporters in Anti-Dumping cases initiated by the European Commission in relation to Bed-linen, P.E.T. and Ethyl-Alcohol.

(h) He has also represented Pakistani exporters in relation to safeguard measures sought to be imposed by the Turkish Government in relation to the import of fabrics and garments.

(i) He developed (on a pro bono basis) the basic proposals for the Ministry of Law, Government of Pakistan for submission to the Asian Development Bank for reforms to the judicial sector under the Access to Justice Program.

(j) He also frequently advise on an on-going basis both the Karachi Stock Exchange and the Central Depository Company of Pakistan (CDC) on various regulatory issues both with their own regulator (i.e. the Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan) as well as with their regulatees (i.e. stock brokers and Issuers/participants in the Central Depository System).

Mr. Jahanzeb Awan (Advocate, High Courts of Pakistan)

Mr. Awan is a Barrister of Lincoln’s Inn and has attended the Inns of Court School of Law (United Kingdom), University of Sheffield (United Kingdom) and the Institute of Business Administration (Karachi). Mr. Awan was invited to obtain the certification given by International Finance Corporation (IFC) to conduct the directors’ training program which is prescribed by the Code of Corporate Governance. Mr. Awan was also invited to obtain the certification given by the International Finance Corporation (IFC) & the Centre for Dispute Resolution (CEDR, UK) to train directors of listed companies in issues pertaining to Corporate Governance, in general, and alternative dispute resolution, in particular. Mr. Awan is part of the faculty of Pakistan Institute of Corporate Governance and he regularly conducts corporate governance awareness workshops as well as workshops / trainings of directors of public listed companies.

Mr. Awan is an Advocate of the High Courts of Pakistan and appears regularly before High Court of Sindh at Karachi, Lahore High Court & Islamabad High Court in matters ranging from arbitration laws, banking laws, civil law, commercial law, constitutional law, corporate law, project finance and taxation. Furthermore, he regularly appears before various commissions/ tribunals (for e.g. Securities & Exchange Commission of Pakistan, Competition Commission of Pakistan etc.) all over the country. Mr. Awan also regularly appears in various commercial arbitration as well.

Mr. Awan’s recent litigation engagements include (but are not limited to) obtaining an order from the Islamabad High Court on behalf of a leading oil marketing company to strike down the demand notices of almost Rs. 500,000,000 (Rupees Five Hundred Million Only) raised by the Income Tax Department, getting the demand notices raised on account of Electricity Duty and sealing of 850 BTS Sites suspended by the High Court of Sindh at Karachi on behalf of Warid Pakistan (Pvt.) Limited, successfully obtaining ad-interim relief from the High Court of Sindh on behalf of Lucky Cement Limited in a commercial transaction running into millions of dollars, successfully arguing on behalf of Pakistan Refinery Limited against the operation of a school in an industrial area, successfully obtaining an ad-interim order on behalf of Aisha Steel Mills Limited (established jointly by the Arif Habib Group & Mitsubishi, Japan) to prevent the deportation of their expatriate engineers and technicians which would have completely halted the production process and successfully obtaining an order to prevent the Government from illegally posting commercial attaches abroad. Mr. Awan is also appearing on behalf of National Bank of Pakistan and the Central Depository Company of Pakistan Limited (CDC) in various matters pending before the Lahore High Court and Sindh High Court.

Mr. Awan’s recent advisory/ transaction engagements include (but are not limited to) advising JS Bank on all aspects of its acquisition of HSBC Middle East (Pakistani Operations), advising the Abu Dhabi Group (ADG) on its dispute with Singtel and also in relation to Singtel’s exit from Warid Pakistan (Private) Limited. Mr. Awan was earlier involved in advising the State Bank of Pakistan in relation to the introduction of the New Compensation & Benefit Structure and the revision of its existing remuneration structure. Mr. Awan also advised the insurers of M/s Airblue Limited in relation to the matters arising out of the ill-fated crash of an Airblue flight including the applicable domestic law, compensation matters (including quantum), vetting of settlement documents and carrying out the settlements with the bereaved families. Mr. Awan is also engaged by various clients for the purpose of negotiating complex commercial contracts both in Pakistan and abroad. Mr. Awan was recently engaged by one of the largest industrial groups in Pakistan to negotiate their contract with its principal abroad.

Mr. Awan was nominated for and attended the International Visitor Leadership Program sponsored by the US State Department. The International Visitor Leadership Program (IVLP) is the U.S. Department of State’s premier professional exchange program. International Visitors are leaders in government, politics, the media, education, the arts, business and other key fields. The alumni include 330 current and former Chiefs of State and Heads of Government, thousands of cabinet-level ministers, and many other distinguished leaders from the public and private sectors. Some of the notable alumni are Margaret Thatcher, Tony Blair, Gordon Brown, Nicolas Sarkozy, Indira Gandhi, Manmohan Singh, Paul Keating, Julia Gillard etc. As part of the program, Mr. Awan visited Washington DC, Philadelphia, Atlanta, Reno & Chicago and interacted with judges, leading lawyers, academics, policy-makers and members of leading think tanks.

Mr. Awan is regularly invited by Governmental/ Semi-Governmental and Non-Governmental Organizations to conduct workshops/ deliver lectures on various areas of the law. He has been involved in conducting trainings/ workshops for members of the subordinate judiciary (Judges of District and Civil Courts) and members of the police force on various laws which have been held under the auspices of Justice (R) Nasir Aslam Zahid (Former Chief Justice Sindh and former Judge of the Supreme Court) and the German Embassy. Mr. Awan was recently invited by the Sindh Revenue Board, Government of Sindh to be a part of the recruitment committee which, inter alia, included the Advisor to the Chief Minister and Provincial Secretaries. Mr. Awan recently spoke as a guest speaker at a conference on the 8th of December, 2012 on the issue of ‘Good Governance & the Menace of Corruption’. The other speakers include the Speaker of the Sindh Assembly, the Chairman of the National Accountability Bureau of Pakistan and former Judge of the Supreme Court.

In his spare time, he likes to enjoy a round of golf.


Associates:

Mr. Kunwar Majid Ali Khan
Mr. Yousuf Nasim
Mr. Syed Mustafa Ali
Mr. Jawad Qureshi
Mr. Salman A. Sheikh
Mr. M. H. Javaid


Court Clerk:

Mr. M Yaqoob

 

News Update

The firm is currently representing nine Independent Power Producers i.e. Hub Power Company, Nishat Power, Sapphire Electric Power, Atlas Power, Orient Power, Saif Power, Halmore Power Generation, Liberty Power Tech, and Nishat Chunian Power in the Supreme Court in Petitions filed against the non-payment by the NTDC of their outstanding dues amounting to over Rs. 70 Billion.

The firm is also representing four mobile operators namely, Warid Telecom, Telenor Pakistan, Pakistan Telecom Mobile (Ufone) and CM Pak (Zong) in petitions filed before the Islamabad High Court challenging the constitutionality of the demand for Federal Excise Duty on telecom services in excess of Rs. 47 Billion. The firm has successfully obtained interim relief against various show cause notices and demands issued by the FBR / LTU.

The firm is advising JS Bank in relation to the proposed amalgamation/ acquisition of HSBC Middle East (Pakistani Operations).

Khalid Anwer & Co has been ranked as a top tier firm for dispute resolution by the Legal 500 (2013).

The firm has been engaged, inter alia, by Lucky Textile Mills (Pvt.) Limited and Continental Biscuits Limited to challenge the vires of the Gas Infrastructure Development Cess Act, 2011 and the recovery of cess in terms thereof. The firm successfully obtained ad-interim orders (which were subsequently confirmed) against the recovery of the said cess.

The firm has been engaged by Pakarab Fertilizers Limited (jointly owned by the Arif Habib Group and the Fatima Group) in relation to its dispute with Dawood Hercules Corporation Limited for the sale of the shares of DH Fertilizers Limited. The firm has successfully obtained ad-interim relief from the Sindh High Court against the sale of the shares of DH Fertilizers Limited by Dawood Hercules Corporation Limited to any third-party.

The firm is currently advising a foreign investor interested in purchasing a major stake in the power sector in Pakistan.

The firm recently advised two IPPs in relation to a major equity investment by a Singapore based fund.

The firm is currently advising an IPP in relation to its negotiations with IFC for the injection of equity and financing of debt.

The firm has been engaged by Warid Telecom (Pvt.) Limited to file appeals before the Supreme Court to challenge the initiation of audit proceedings (both income tax and federal excise duty) by FBR which were upheld by the IHC.

The firm has been engaged by a group of companies in the ship-breaking industry to challenge the retrospective application, by the Collector of Customs of a Statutory Regulatory Order, through which the FBR enhanced the witholding income tax by 400% on the import of shipping vessels. The firm has successfully obtained ad-interim orders and restrained the Collector from interpreting and applying the SRO retrospectively and collecting the enhanced amount of tax.

The firm is representing M/s Standard Chartered Bank Pakistan Limited & M/s Deutsche Bank in relation to the demand raised by the FBR on account of FED on Banking Services in the Province of Sindh. The firm has successfully obtained ad-interim orders from the Sindh High Court in relation to the same.

The firm has been recently engaged by Fauji Fertilizer Company Ltd, the largest manufacturer of fertilizers in Pakistan, to challenge an order of the Competition Commission of Pakistan whereby a significant penalty has been imposed on the Company.

© 2013 Khalid Anwer & Co.