Will Jam v IFC increase development banks’ exposure to US suits?

Author: | Published: 23 Apr 2019

A recent suit has practical implications for similar organisations’ immunity in the US, write Latham & Watkins lawyers

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On February 27 2019, the United States Supreme Court delivered a 7-1 opinion in Jam v International Finance Corporation, holding that the immunity granted to international organisations under the International Organizations Immunity Act (IOIA) is not nearly absolute, but rather evolves with the immunity available to foreign governments.

While the full legal implications of this decision on multilateral development banks’ (MDB) exposure to suits in the US are not yet known, it is reasonable to expect that this decision may have some practical implications on MDBs in the near term.

In 2008, the International Finance Corporation (IFC), an international organisation headquartered in Washington DC that finances private sector development, provided construction financing to the developer of a coal-fired power plant in Gujarat, India (Plant).

In 2015, Budha Ismail Jam...