International Commercial and Investment Arbitration




Juan Felipe Merizalde’s practice focuses on international commercial arbitration and investment arbitration, particularly disputes involving Latin American parties.  He has considerable experience as counsel and arbitrator in over 50 cases before the most renowned institutions, including the International Centre for Dispute Resolution (ICDR), the United Nations Commission on International Trade Law (UNCITRAL), the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC), the International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID), and the Permanent Court of Arbitration (PCA) at The Hague. Juan Felipe’s investment-treaty experience includes two recent successive victories in 2020 for a Central American State, as well as advising investors in ICSID cases and potential investment arbitrations.

In December 2020, Juan Felipe launched his own practice in Bogota, Colombia, acting as counsel and arbitrator in commercial and investment cases.  He is currently acting as lead counsel in two ICC cases in the energy sector as well as a potential investment arbitration against a Latin American country. Prior to starting his own firm, Juan Felipe worked for 12 years at Dechert LLP in its Paris and Washington D.C. offices. At Dechert, he gained vast experience with one of the most renowned Latin American practices in the world.

Juan Felipe is admitted to practice in New York, the District of Columbia (Special Legal Consultant) and Colombia. Juan Felipe also passed the Paris Bar Exam (art. 100).  

Juan Felipe Merizalde Urdaneta is extremely hard-working and truly dedicated to his clients, making him a force to be reckoned with” (Future Leaders, 2017).

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Acted as counsel and arbitrator in more than 50 cases under the major international arbitration rules.  

Due to the confidential nature of these cases, we will only provide non-confidential details upon request.

Investment and Public International Law

  • As party representative in 15 ICSID cases and 12 cases under the UNCITRAL Rules related to hydrocarbons, energy, mining, telecommunications, services, and construction, involving 13 Latin American countries;


  • Advising foreign investors and States on potential investment disputes and during the negotiation phase;

Natural Resources

  • As party representative in 6 oil & gas disputes;

  • Counsel in 8 mining cases involving the extraction of gold, silver, ulexite, tin, and boron in disputes exceeding US$ 16 billion.


  • As party representative in 10 cases in the energy sector (renewable and non renewable);

  • Experience in cases involving PPA’s, joint ventures, and the operation of hydroelectric plants, combined cycle plants, windpower, photovoltaic plants, and power transmission lines.


  • As counsel in 3 major investment arbitrations relating to the termination of long-term telecom concession contracts and the nationalization of a telecom company;

  • As counsel of one of the largest European telecommunication companies in an ICC arbitration against a local telecom company arising out of a merger;

  • As counsel of a Sovereign State in an UNCITRAL arbitration related to the construction and operation of telecom centers.


  • As party representative in 8 construction cases involving complex technical and economic issues;

  • Experience as counsel in cases related to the construction of airports, highways, bus rapid transit (BRT) systems, tramways, ports, telecommunications centers, and hydroelectric plants.


  • Acted as counsel in arbitral proceedings relating to sales, agency, distribution, M&A, joint ventures, pharmaceuticals, and defense.  

  • Acted as arbitrator and emergency arbitrator in 11 cases under different arbitration rules.

  • Acted as the Tribunal’s administrative secretary in 12 cases.



  • ICC Advanced Arbitration Academy for Latin America, 2018

  • New York University, LL.M., International Business Regulation, Litigation and Arbitration, 2011

  • Université Paris 2 Panthéon-Assas, Master 2, Private Law, 2008

  • Université Paris 2 Panthéon-Assas, Master 1, International Law, 2006

  • Universidad del Rosario, Law Degree, 2007 


Admitted to Practice in Colombia and New York. District of Columbia (Special Legal Consultant). Sat for and approved the Paris Bar Exam (art. 100).


  • Spanish

  • English

  • French

  • Portuguese (basic)


  • ICC Commission on Arbitration & ADR (Task Forces on “Accuracy of Fact Witness Memory in International Arbitration” and "Addressing Issues of Corruption in International Arbitration”).

  • ICC Colombia Commission on Arbitration & ADR

  • ICC Young Arbitrators Forum (ICC YAF)

  • ICDR Young & International

  • Institute for Transnational Arbitration (ITA) Advisory Board

  • Latin American Arbitration Association (ALArb)

  • Member of the list of Arbitrators of the Court of Arbitration for Art (CAfA)


Avenida 9 # 103A - 36, Edificio Latitud 104, Oficina 602-A, Bogotá, Colombia

E: jfm@jfmerizalde.com

T:  +57 60 1 6199 699


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