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What is Sovereign Immunity?
It is likely that the awarding authority in an infrastructure project will be a government authority and as such may benefit from sovereign immunity. This should be checked with local lawyers. In some cases when concession legislation is enacted, it specifically waives sovereign immunity for the state in relation to infrastructure projects – this is, however, by no means universal. A private operator will be anxious to ensure that any sovereign immunity is waived.
Can the awarding authority be sued or does it have sovereign immunity? If the awarding authority is part of the government, it may have immunity from prosecution and so it may be necessary for such entity to specifically confirm that it will not be bound by sovereign immunity.
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This document has been prepared for the purposes of the PPP Legal Resource Center (PPPLRC). It is a checklist for general guidance purposes only and should not be used as a substitute for specific legal advice for a project.
Updated: March 8, 2022