Cornel Popa

Cornel Popa


(40-21) 204 88 94

In his almost 30 years of experience, Cornel had the opportunity to be part of many large scale projects which helped define the current business and legal environment of Romania.

His legal work has been particularly focused in recent years on international and domestic arbitration.  He is acknowledged as one of the most experienced dispute resolution lawyers in Romania, having dealt with civil litigation, mediation, domestic and international arbitration and participated in hearings held in Romania, Western Europe and the United States of America, acting under the rules of major arbitration institutions, such as ICSID, ICC, LCIA, VIAC and the Permanent Court of Arbitration in The Hague (as well as the UNCITRAL Rules, for ad-hoc arbitration). He is a member of the Managing Committee of the Court of International Commercial Arbitration (attached to Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Romania) and has been part of the drafting commission of the 2018 Rules of Arbitration of the court, which have been a founding stone of the modernization of arbitration in Romania and updating it to best international practices. He is also a member of the ICC Institute of World Business Law and acts as arbitrator in many domestic and international cases.

As part of his significant legal consultancy work, Cornel has assisted leading international investors bidding for privatized assets by the Romanian state. He also provided assistance to buyers and sellers of major private-owned companies, being involved in all stages of the sale process (due diligence, preparation of legal documents, negotiations, closing etc.).

In his day-to-day work, Cornel advises clients in connection with strategic business decisions, provides opinions and recommendation of actions in connection with corporate and commercial matters. He routinely takes part in the preparation and negotiation of business contracts in various industries.

He is a believer in the force of innovation. Many of the solutions for which he advocated and used in have been implemented for the first time in the Romanian legal market. Cornel is a frequent and sought after speaker and moderator at conferences on legal and economic issues and is a coordinator of the internal training program of the law firm.

He is fluent in English and French..

Relevant Matters:

  • Acting as arbitrator in numerous disputes concerning infrastructure, commercial contracts, shipping, capital markets etc.
  • Assistance and representation to a Governmental authority in several investment arbitration case before the International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) and under the UNCITRAL Rules. All cases have been won without any finding of liability under the relevant investment treaties or damages awarded to the claimants.
  • Representation of a leading international company in an ICC arbitration dealing with the project of expansion of the Henri Coandă International Airport in Otopeni, Romania.
  • Representation of a leading Romanian company in the oil&gas market in a successful arbitration against the National Agency for Mineral Resources concerning penalties for an alleged failure to execute works subject to a minimal work program adopted under the provision of a concession agreement.
  • Assistance for a leading global telecom company in arbitration and subsequent (successful) annulment proceedings in connection with a long-term contract made in connection with optic fiber communications and energy distribution network.
  • Assistance for a leading international construction company in the implementation of a first project of third-party financing of an international dispute in Romania.
  • Representation of a domestic company in exequatur proceedings in Romania against the enforcement of an arbitral award issued in China (which was denied by the Romanian court)
  • Coordinator of the legal team retained by a leading Romanian energy company in a complex international arbitration related to the modernisation of one of the largest European hydro-power stations. 
  • Representation of Romanian shareholders in connection with the sale of a leading Romanian company to an international conglomerate active in agri-business. 
  • Coordinator of the legal team retained by a large Scandinavian food producer regarding the acquisition of various local producers of processed food.
  • Advisor to various clients in connection with potential criminal activity related to their business. The advice included the investigation and the review of the facts, the legal assessment of the conduct of the individuals concerned, review of scenarios of actions for the client etc.
  • Part of the team involved in a World-Bank financed project for the implementation of the new Civil Code of Romania (replacing the old Civil Code, which had been in force for almost 150 years). 
  • Coordinator of the legal team retained by a leading Czech-based pharmaceutical group on a USD 200,000,000 transaction for the acquisition of the largest Romanian drugs producer.
  • Day-to-day assistance in relation with strategic decisions and corporate law matters for companies active in various industries (agri-business, fast moving consumer business, telecom, energy, recycling etc.)