Arbitration in the Rs 20,000-crore (Rs 200-billion) Vodafone tax dispute is being delayed, as a third arbitrator in the case is yet to be decided.
While R C Lahoti, former chief justice of India, was appointed the Centre’s arbitrator, Vodafone Plc named Canadian trial lawyer Yves Fortier.
These two arbitrators would decide the third, said a person privy to the matter.
The two parties -- the Centre and Vodafone -- have sought a few more weeks to decide on the matter.
“Extension of the deadline for the appointment of the third arbitrator is very common in international arbitration,” the person said.
A Vodafone Plc spokesperson said, “Both sides have agreed to extend the deadline for the appointment of a third arbitrator by a few weeks.”
The arbitration process might take longer than expected, as meetings will be held in a neutral country.
Also, the availability of the three arbitrators would have to be considered.
While the Union Cabinet had approved non-binding conciliation in June 2013, the British telecom major had, in January this year, served a supplementary notice to the Centre on the matter, under a bilateral investment protection treaty.