This proceeding concerned complaints made by junior joint venture partners about the conduct of the senior joint venture partner in relation to decisions made in the course of performing a joint venture for the exploitation of a coal deposit at Monto in Queensland. The plaintiffs contended that the first defendant breached the joint venture agreement by deciding to suspend all work on the Monto Coal Project in July 2003 and, accordingly, by failing to develop Stage 1 of the Project by 16 May 2005 and by failing to undertake a Stage 2 feasibility study.
The plaintiffs and defendants sought to rely on certain expert evidence that was said to be outside that permitted by the case management orders. The defendants contended that the plaintiffs needed leave to adduce further expert evidence which was substantive and not merely “in reply”. The Supreme Court (Bond J) accepted the defendants’ submission that, properly construed, the case management orders required that the plaintiffs obtain the Court’s leave. The Court went on to conclude that leave should be granted.
Mohammud Jaamae Hafeez-Baig (with A Pomerenke QC and E Hoiberg) appeared for the defendants, instructed by Allens.
The judgment is available here.