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Matthew Culver

Partner
Head of Oil and Gas, Middle East

CMS Cameron McKenna Nabarro Olswang LLP
Cannon Place
78 Cannon Street
London
EC4N 6AF
United Kingdom
Languages English

Matthew Culver is Head of the Oil and Gas Practice Group in the Middle East and is based in the Dubai and London offices.

Since setting up the Dubai office in 2012, Matthew has advised on a number of high value projects in the Middle East region including in Iraq and Kurdistan. 

He advises on the acquisition and disposal of oil and gas interests worldwide (upstream, midstream and downstream) and on joint venture arrangements, including all aspects of joint operating agreements such as operatorship, pre-emption, assignment, default and withdrawal. Matthew is a contributing editor of the Getting the Deal Through – Oil Regulation – Iraq publication and CMS Middle East is co-founder of the DMCC ‘Energy Club’ based in Dubai.

Prior to his move to Dubai, Matthew worked in the London office of CMS for 12 years. During that period, he spent time on secondment with BP, ExxonMobil and Talisman. He assisted ExxonMobil in the sale of a number of its North Sea interests and worked with BP on its TNK joint venture. He has advised a number of oil and gas companies on various acquisitions and divestments in Russia, Poland, Hungary, Bulgaria, United Kingdom (offshore and onshore), France, Italy, Netherlands, Romania, Spain and Turkmenistan.

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Relevant experience

  • Gazprom Neft Middle East on its oil and gas activities in Kurdistan.
  • European oil company in relation to the development of a gas field in Kurdistan.
  • Major UAE oil company in relation to its Middle East oil and gas interests including in Iraq, Afghanistan, Turkmenistan and Algeria.
  • Oil Major on its drilling activities in Southern Iraq.
  • Major European oil and gas company in relation to its Iraq oil and gas interests including on issues concerning default, assignment and withdrawal.
  • Premier Oil on its Middle East oil and gas interests.
  • Excelerate Energy in relation to its FSRU charter with DUSUP.
  • An international oil and gas company on the farm-out of certain oil interests in Egypt.
  • An international oil and gas company on its drilling and supply chain management contracts in Iraq.
  • ExxonMobil on the disposal of various oil and gas interests and on expert determination for decommissioning.
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Education

  • 2000 - Legal Practice Course, The College of Law, Guildford
  • 1999 - Common Professional Examination, The College of Law, Guildford
  • 1998 - BA (Hons) Modern History, University of Warwick, Warwick 
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Memberships

  • Member, UK Energy Lawyers Group
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Expertise

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16/12/2015
CMS ad­vises In­nova Cap­it­al, private equity fund, on...
22 Jan 19
Oil & Gas: Court of Ap­peal deals with JOA budget over­runs and op­er­at­or...
In Spir­it En­ergy Re­sources Ltd & Ors v Mara­thon Oil UK LLC [2019] EW­CA Civ 11, the Court of Ap­peal dealt with an ap­peal con­cern­ing wheth­er an op­er­at­or, un­der a joint op­er­at­ing agree­ment, was en­titled...
13/10/2014
CMS strengthens Middle East con­struc­tion and en­gin­eer­ing...
22 Aug 18
Con­ven­tion on the Leg­al Status of the Caspi­an Sea: Im­plic­a­tions for...
On 12 Au­gust 2018, Rus­sia, Azerbaijan, Ir­an, Kaza­kh­stan and Turk­menistan, be­ing the Caspi­an lit­tor­al states, signed the Con­ven­tion on the Leg­al Status of the Caspi­an Sea (the “Con­ven­tion”). The Con­ven­tion,...
10/03/2014
CMS opens new of­fice in Oman, strength­en­ing Middle...
26 Jul 18
Ter­min­a­tion Pro­vi­sions in Drilling Con­tracts
In Vant­age Deep­wa­ter Com­pany and Vant­age Deep­wa­ter Drilling, Inc. (to­geth­er “Vant­age”) v Pet­ro­bras Amer­ica Inc.; Pet­ro­bras Venezuela In­vest­ments & Ser­vices, BV; and Pet­róleo Brasileiro S.A. (Pet­ro­bras...
13 Mar 18
Oil & Gas: JOAs, budget over­runs and op­er­at­or pen­sion de­fi­cits
In Mara­thon Oil UK LLC v Cent­rica Re­sources Lim­ited, TAQA Bratani Lim­ited and TAQA Bratani LNS Lim­ited [2018] EWHC 322 (Comm), the Com­mer­cial Court con­sidered wheth­er an op­er­at­or was en­titled to charge...
22 Feb 18
Oil & Gas Con­sultancy Agree­ments: Giv­ing ef­fect to parties' true in­ten­tions...
In Monde Pet­ro­leum SA v West­ernzagros Ltd [2018] EW­CA Civ 25, the Court of Ap­peal has provided guid­ance as to what the words “fully op­er­a­tion­al and en­force­able” in an agree­ment might mean in the con­text...
17 Nov 17
Oil & Gas JOA De­faults: Eng­lish Court of Ap­peal up­holds re­straint...
The Court of Ap­peal has up­held a de­cision of the High Court in which an oil com­pany was found in con­tempt of court for hold­ing an op­er­at­ing com­mit­tee meet­ing in the ab­sence of an al­leged de­fault­ing party...
02 Aug 17
Oil & Gas: M&A Loan Note Guar­an­tee – Es­tab­lish­ing dis­charge by mis­rep­res­ent­a­tion
In Ab­bot In­vest­ments (North Africa) Ltd v Nestoil Ltd [2017] EWHC 119 (Comm) a dis­pute arose con­cern­ing al­leged rep­res­ent­a­tions re­lat­ing to an oil rig owned by the tar­get com­pany pri­or to the sale of...
19 May 17
Oil & Gas: JOAs – Re­strain­ing rem­ed­ies for de­fault
In the event of a fail­ure to pay a val­id cash call, un­der oil and gas joint op­er­at­ing agree­ments (“JOAs”) the non-de­fault­ing parties are tra­di­tion­ally gran­ted a series of rem­ed­ies against the party...
15 Mar 17
Road to re­cov­ery
This art­icle was first pub­lished in Pet­ro­leum Re­view in March 2017 and li­censed for print and elec­tron­ic dis­tri­bu­tion to CMS and sites owned by CMS ex­clus­ively. Mat­thew Cul­ver takes a closer look at...