Ilija is a partner in the Paris office. Ilija has represented clients in international arbitrations conducted under all major arbitration rules. His practice focuses on complex investment and commercial arbitrations, particularly in the energy sector. He has extensive experience with proceedings for the annulment and enforcement of arbitral awards in numerous jurisdictions.
Ilija has also advised clients in relation to the renegotiation of bilateral investment treaties and on public international law issues, more generally, including on immunities, the law of the sea, and international criminal law.
Ilija’s experience includes the representation of:
- a European subsidiary of a significant Asian LNG trader in respect of a variety of issues
arising under back-to-back LNG supply and purchase agreements and representing it in
an ICC price-review arbitration, with English law applying
- a Ministry of Finance of a European State in an ICC arbitration against a consortium of
European infrastructure companies, relating to a project for the improvement of the
wastewater infrastructure in the country. The contract is based on the FIDIC Red Book
- a European energy company and the municipality of a European city in an SCC
arbitration against an international utility company. The dispute arises from a long-term
agreement for the lease of energy generation facilities;
- the Republic of Lithuania as Respondent in an ICSID arbitration relating to district heating
and power generation markets in Lithuania brought under the Lithuania-France bilateral
- the majority shareholders in the former Yukos Oil Company in proceedings initiated in
multiple jurisdictions in relation to the setting side and recognition and enforcement of
the $50 billion awards rendered in the arbitrations against the Russian Federation. Ilija
also represented the majority shareholders in the underlying arbitrations, in which the
Tribunal found the Russian Federation liable to pay damages under the Energy Charter
Treaty for the expropriation of the shareholders’ investments in Yukos;
- the Republic of Lithuania in two arbitrations against Gazprom: one brought by Gazprom
under the Russia-Lithuania BIT in respect of Lithuania’s implementation of the EU Third
Energy Package and another brought by the State under two contracts in respect of
Gazprom’s undertaking to supply gas to Lithuania at fair prices;
- a European energy company, buyer in a long-term gas supply agreement, in an ICC
arbitration in Geneva against another European energy company. English law applied;
- Electricité de France (EDF) as Claimant in a UNCITRAL arbitration against the Republic
of Hungary. The dispute arose from termination of the Power Purchase Agreements put
in place during the privatisation of the electricity sector. The claims were brought under
the Energy Charter Treaty and the arbitration was considered in accordance with
Ilija is featured in Who’s Who Legal 2020, 2021, 2022, and 2023 – Arbitration as a Future Leader, which hails him as “one of the most outstanding legal minds of his generation”, someone who “knows the cases inside out”, and a “truly remarkable’ arbitration lawyer who has an impressive ability to manage very complex cases and to develop strategy”. One client notes “I was most impressed with the depth of Mr Mitrev Penusliski’s knowledge across various areas of public international law”.
Ilija holds an LLM from Harvard law School, a Magister Juris from the University of Oxford, and an LLB from Saints Cyril and Methodius University.