Peter Leon is a partner and head of Webber Wentzel’s Mining Sector Group.
His areas of expertise include mineral and petroleum regulation (including the Mineral and Petroleum Resources Development Act, 2002 and international best practice), black economic empowerment and indigenisation law, international investment law as well as financial services regulation. He has advised on major mine development agreements in Africa, as well as resources regulatory issues in Botswana, Eritrea, Ghana, Kenya, Madagascar, Mozambique, Namibia, Nigeria, Tanzania and Zimbabwe.
Peter Leon is also a regular speaker at various mining conferences, courses and Parliamentary hearings in South Africa and internationally. Peter is an honorary lecturer at the University of Dundee in Scotland. He is also an accomplished speaker, and has written on the topics of mining, resource nationalism and empowerment.
His expertise has been recognised by various international research organisations including Chambers Global (Mining), Legal 500 (Mining) and The International Who’s Who (Mining, Business).
Peter holds a BA degree (with distinction in Roman law) and a LLB degree (cum laude) from the University of Cape Town, as well as a LLM degree (first class honours) and Diploma in Comparative Legal Studies from the University of Cambridge. He is a Senior Scholar of Christ’s College, Cambridge.
Areas of expertise
Mining and oil and gas law
International investment law
Broad-based black economic empowerment
Financial services regulation
Advising mining companies on the regulatory implications of key policy proposals in the African National Congress's research report on State Intervention in the Minerals Sector (SIMS).
Advising a multinational mining company on a mine development agreement and related issues with the government of Ghana.
Advising on the regulatory requirements for a change of control of a company holding mineral rights in Tanzania.
Co-counsel for Italian and Luxembourg investors in a EUR266 million bilateral investment treaty arbitration against the South African government, instituted under the auspices of the International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) (Piero Foresti and Others v Republic of South Africa, case no. ARB(AF)/07/1).
Advising the Ministry of Solid Minerals Development, Nigeria, on the Nigerian Minerals and Mining Act, 2007.
Advising investors on the recently licensed Bisha mining project in Eritrea.
Advising on the Western Cluster iron ore project in Liberia.
Advising on the Zimbabwean Mines and Minerals Act, 2007.
Advising the International Petroleum Exchange and the London Metal Exchange.
Advising on the terms and various interpretations of the Bilateral Investment Treaty between South Africa and Zimbabwe with regard to the possible expropriation of protected investments.
Advising on the terms and impact of the European Union (EU) sanctions against Zimbabwe (Council Regulation (EC) No 314/2004) on investments in Zimbabwe by EU nationals.
Providing strategic and regulatory advice on Mozambican tantalum projects.
Advising investors in the Madagascan oil industry.
Advising multinational oil and resource companies, including Impact Africa, Forest Oil Corporation, Anadarko Oil Corporation and Afren plc, on regulatory issues with the Petroleum Agency South Africa and the Department of Mineral Resources.
Advising the Chamber of Mines of South Africa, the Banking Association and the American Chamber of Commerce (AmCham) on the draft Broad-Based Black Economic Empowerment Codes of Good Practice and advising AmCham on the Information and Communications Technology Charter.
Nominated to appear in Expert Guides' Guide to the World’s Leading Energy Attorneys (9th Edition) 2012 as one of the outstanding practitioners in this field.
Recognised as an outstanding practitioner in The Expert Guides to the World's Leading Energy and Natural Resource Lawyers 2010.
Included in all five editions (2008 - 2012) of Rain Makers and Pot Stirrers – the guide to the 100 most influential people in South Africa's mining industry.
Named as a legal expert in mining by Legal Experts: Europe, Middle East and Africa (a legal business report for Legal 500) in 2011 - 2013.
Named as one of the world's leading mining lawyers in The International Who's Who of Mining Lawyers 2006-2013.
Named as one of the world's leading business lawyers in The International Who's Who of Business Lawyers 2006-2013.
Presented with a certificate from the chair of the International Bar Association's (IBA's) Legal Practice Division in recognition of his "remarkable work" in relation to the Mining Law Committee's Model Mine Development Agreement project for developing countries.
Ranked as a mining law expert in Chambers and Partners' Global Guide 2012 - 2013.
In August, 2012, Peter was appointed as an honorary lecturer at the Centre for Energy, Petroleum and Mineral Law and Policy at the University of Dundee, Scotland with effect from 2013.
Named as one of the world's leading energy and natural resources (mining) lawyers in Practical Law Company's Which Lawyer 2012 - 2013.
The rise of resource nationalism and what it means for foreign investors