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Maldives court sets arbitration precedent with Hilton ruling

Maldives appellate court on Thursday set a precedent on arbitration enforcement after it ruled that the archipelago's civil court has the jurisdiction to enforce arbitration rulings.

Ruling coalition lawmaker and tourism tycoon Ahmed Siyam’s Sun Travel and Tours had been ordered to pay USD24million in damages for the abrupt termination of a tourism contract with Hilton International.

Siyam’s company evicted Hilton International from the Irufushi resort in 2013. The 221-bed luxury resort was leased to the international hotel chain in 2009 which Siyam later re-branded to Sun Siyam Irufushi.

However, the civil court had dismissed the case in November last year insisting that it did not have the jurisdiction to hear the case.

However, the civil court had dismissed the case in November last year insisting that it did not have the jurisdiction to hear the case.

Hilton had however appealed the lower court's ruling at the country's High Court.

The appellate court on Thursday ruled in favour of Hilton International saying that the island nation's arbitration laws clearly state that such cases fall under the jurisdiction of the civil court and had the authority to enforce arbitration rulings.

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