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 sought to adduce expert evidence from an expert in rail and other infrastructure. The defendants objected to extensive parts of the reports produced by the expert and some portions of the joint expert reports. The bases for the objections included that the matters were not properly the subject of expert opinion, that the expert was not adequately qualified to make the impugned statements, and that the opinions were not based wholly or substantially on the expert’s expertise.
In this decision, the Supreme Court (Bond J) provisionally dealt with some of the objections. The Court ruled finally on the objections in Sanrus Pty Ltd v Monto Coal 2 Pty Ltd (No 7)  QSC 241.
Damian Clothier QC (with E Hoiberg) appeared for the defendants, instructed by Allens.
The judgment is available here.