Ewan West

Ewan West
Call 2006
Education

MA DPhil (Oxon) MBA (Cranfield) LLB (London)

Contact the Clerks

+44 (0)20 7405 7211 | chambers@monckton.com

Ewan specialises in public procurement, competition, indirect taxation, European Union law, regulatory law (especially telecommunication and utilities), information rights and public and administrative law generally. He also practises in general commercial law and sports law He has appeared in the High Court, the Competition Appeal Tribunal, the First-tier Tribunal (Tax Chamber), the First Tier-Tribunal (Information Rights) and before a number of regulatory bodies including the Football Association Appeal Board, the Football Disciplinary Commission of the Football League, the Disciplinary Committee of the Six Nations Internationals 2011 and the Disciplinary Committee of the Greyhound Board of Great Britain.

He is a member of the Attorney General’s Panel of Counsel (B Panel).

Ewan also undertakes a wide range of advisory work, in particular in competition, VAT and procurement matters, though also in relation to public and EU law more generally.  He has worked for a number of regulatory authorities, including the Competition Commission, the Office of Fair Trading and Ofwat, and has a particularly wide-ranging procurement practice, acting for both tenderers and public authorities.  He also has a growing sports law practice.

 

Recent / Major Cases

Competition

  • Humber Oil Terminals Trustee Ltd v Associated British Ports [2011] EWHC 352 (Ch)
  • British Telecommunications plc v Office of Communications [2010] CAT 17
  • Stagecoach Group plc v Competition Commission [2010] CAT 14
  • BAA Limited v Competition Commission [2009] CAT 35
  • Wm Morrison Supermarkets plc v Competition Commission (Interim Relief) [2009] CAT 33
  • Tesco plc v Competition Commission [2009] CAT 6
  • Bookmakers Afternoon Greyhound Services & Others  v Amalgamated Racing Ltd & Others [2008] EWHC 1978 (Ch)

Procurement

  • Alstom Transport v Eurostar International Limited [2010] EWHC 2747 (Ch)
  • Community Care North East (a partnership) v Durham County Council [2010] EWHC 959 (QB)
  • Croft House Care and others v Durham County Council [2010] EWHC 909 (TCC)
  • Lion Apparel Systems Ltd v Firebuy Ltd

Public & Administrative Law

  • Department of Work and Pensions v Information Commissioner (Case No. EA/2010/0073)
  • Alan Fisher v Information Commissioner (Case No. EA/2010/0044)
  • Chief Constable of Surrey Police v Information Commissioner (Case No. EA/2009/0081)
  • R (on the application of Welsh Water Limited) v Water Services Regulation Authority [2009] EWHC 3493 (Admin)
  • Ceri Gibbons v Information Commissioner (Case No. EA/2009/002)

VAT, Duties and Indirect Taxation

  • Oasis (UK) Limited v The Commissioners for Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs (First-tier Tribunal (Tax Chamber))
  • ERF Limited v The Commissioners for Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs (First-tier Tribunal (Tax Chamber) – now on appeal to Upper Tribunal)
  • RM Education v The Commissioners for Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs HMRC [2009] UKVAT V20911
Competition / State Aid

Recent / Current Cases

  • Humber Oil Terminals Trustee v Associated British Ports [2011] EWCH 352(Ch) – strike out of competition claim in Landlord and Tenant Act 1954 proceedings
  • Bookmakers Afternoon Greyhound Services & Others v Amalgamated Racing Ltd & Others [2008] EWHC 1978 (Ch) – junior counsel for Amalgamated Racing Ltd in challenge under Article 81/Chapter 1 to lawfulness of licensing arrangements for a new televised picture/data service to bookmakers
  • Tesco Plc v Competition Commission [2009] CAT 6 – junior counsel for Competition Commission in Tesco’s appeal to CAT challenging proposed “competition test” remedy following Groceries Market Inquiry
  • Wm Morrison Supermarkets plc v Competition Commission (Interim Relief) [2009] CAT 33 – acted unled in defeating an application for interim relief relating to a divestiture remedy imposed by the Competition Commission following its merger inquiry into the acquisition by Tesco of a former Co-op store in Slough
  • BAA  Limited v Competition Commission [2009] CAT 35 – junior counsel for Competition Commission in BAA’s appeal to CAT following market inquiry into supply of airport services by BAA
  • Liquid Petroleum Gas Market Inquiry – assisting the Competition Commission in implementation of proposed remedies following its market investigation
  • Tesco/Co-op Store Acquisition in Slough – assisting the Competition Commission in implementation of proposed remedies
  • Groceries Market Inquiry – seconded to Competition Commission to assist with preparation of Provisional Findings and Final Report, as well as implementation of remedies, including in relation to controlled land
  • Advising the Office of Fair Trading in its investigation into alleged price-fixing in the market for cigarettes and tobacco products

Ewan has a broad-based competition practice advising on matters such as restrictive agreements, distribution and supply arrangements, refusal to supply and potential Article 82/Chapter II and state aid infringements.

 

EU Law

Ewan has experience of drafting written observations and speeches before the European Court of Justice on a variety of issues, including sex discrimination and VAT.  As a civil servant, he regularly attending working group meetings and Council of Ministers meetings in Brussels and has a detailed understanding of the development of Community legislation.

Procurement Law

Current/Recent Cases:

  • Alstom Transport v Eurostar International Limited [2010] EWHC 2747 (Ch) – junior counsel for successful defence of an interim injunction application relating to one of the highest value public procurements to be litigated in the United Kingdom (damages action ongoing)
  • Community Care North East (a partnership) v Durham County Council [2010] EWHC 959 (QB) (implications of termination of a procurement)
  • Croft House Care and others v Durham County Council [2010] EWHC 909 (TCC) (treatment of confidential information for purposes of a procurement challenge)
  • Lion Apparel Systems Ltd v Firebuy Ltd – junior counsel for Firebuy (damages action in the Chancery Division for breach of procurement Regulations).

Given his prior experience before coming to the Bar, Ewan has a natural affinity with procurement law, especially where it relates to the commissioning of major projects, and has a very active and wide-ranging procurement practice. He has advised extensively on matters such as the use of competitive dialogue and framework agreements, evaluation methodologies, contest design and the application of the public procurement regime to urban development, as well as undertaking detailed forensic examination of procurement processes to determine the scope for and vulnerability to judicial challenge. His practical experience of managing large procurements is particularly valuable when it is necessary to consider ways to protect procurements, whether future or in progress, against the risk of successful legal challenge.  His private sector clients have been drawn from a wide variety of sectors, including construction, pharmaceuticals, waste, property development, medical services  and  facilities management, while his public sector clients range from large central Government departments down to the smallest local authorities and NHS Trusts.

Public & Administrative Law

Ewan advises across the field of public and administrative law. His former experience as a Senior Civil Servant is particularly valuable in this regard given his intimate acquaintance with the process of public sector decision-making and the practical constraints that bear upon public authorities.

As a civil servant, Ewan was also intimately involved in the development of legislation, working at all stages of the process from broad policy initiatives (formulated at Ministerial level) through to the enactment of specific measures, whether by means of primary or secondary legislation.  He has experience of preparing briefing for and attending Parliamentary debates on legislation.  In his career at the Bar he has also been involved in drafting secondary legislation.  He has a growing practice in information rights, which again leverages on his experience as a former civil servant.

Current/Recent Cases:

  • Department of Work and Pensions v Information Commissioner (Case No. EA/2010/0073) – a leading case on the application of the “commercial information” exemption under the Freedom of Information Act 2000
  • R (on the application of Welsh Water Limited) v Water Services Regulation Authority [2009] EWHC 3493 (Admin) (junior counsel for challenge to Ofwat’s policy on “inset” appointments)
  • Alan Fisher v Information Commissioner (Case No. EA/2010/0044)
  • Chief Constable of Surrey Police v Information Commissioner (Case No. EA/2009/0081)
  • Ceri Gibbons v Information Commissioner (Case No. EA/2009/002)
Telecommunications

Current/Recent Cases:

  • British Telecommunications plc v Office of Communications [2010] CAT 17 (junior counsel for Ofcom in appeal of a dispute determination relating to charges to mobile operators for termination of calls to 080 numbers)
  • Cable & Wireless UK v Office of Communications (leased lines charge control)

Ewan has advised on various aspects of telecommunications regulation and in relation to contractual disputes. He is currently acting in relation to a dispute arising out of termination charges for the sending of SMS messages.

VAT & Customs

Recent/Current Cases

  • Oasis (UK) Limited v The Commissioners for Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs (First-tier Tribunal (Tax Chamber)) (junior counsel for HMRC; categorisation of machine under s.23 VATA 1994 and exemption for lotteries in Group 4 Schedule 9 VATA 1994)
  • ERF Limited v The Commissioners for Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs (First-tier Tribunal (Tax Chamber) – now on appeal to Upper Tribunal) (junior counsel for appellant – appeal against assessments to VAT and civil penalty under “New Approach”)
  • RM Education v HMRC [2009] UKVAT V20911 (junior counsel for HMRC: exemption under Schedule 6 of the VAT Act)

Ewan has experience of a wide range of VAT matters, including single/multiple supply, place of supply, exempt and zero-rated supply and MTIC fraud. He also has some experience in Insurance Premium Tax.

He has been instructed by both the taxpayer and HMRC in proceedings before the First Tier Tribunal. Recent advisory work has included consideration of the partial exemptions regime, single/multiple supply and the VAT treatment of property transactions.

What the Directories Say

Under Public Procurement: Clients benefit from his familiarity with central government proceedings. He handles a broad range of procurement instructions and is qualified to undertake direct access work. “He’s very well organised, and has good judgement and a good knowledge of the subject.” Chambers UK, 2014

Ewan West is ‘extremely approachable and knowledgeable’.” He is recommended as a leading Junior under Public Procurement Law. Legal 500, 2013

Under Public Procurement: “Nothing is too much trouble for” Ewan West, say those that instruct him. This former civil servant has “an invaluable understanding of the workings of central government.” Sources find him to be a man who “provides practical and creative solutions.” Chambers UK, 2013

Ewan West has a wide-ranging procurement practice. Formerly a Senior Civil Servant in the Department for Transport, he understands the workings of the public sector better than most. This additional perspective proved invaluable when he successfully represented Eurostar after Alstom sought an interim injunction preventing it from entering a contract to purchase trains from Siemens. Interviewees note that he is “personable and intelligent; he gets the bigger picture as well as the finer details, and goes beyond the extra mile to get the job done.”Chambers UK, 2012

Publications

Contributor to Value Added Tax:  Commentary and Analysis (London:  Sweet & Maxwell, 2009)

Regular speaker at seminars and training events

Additional Information

Before coming to the Bar, Ewan was a Senior Civil Servant in the Department for Transport and its predecessors.  In his 12 years there he was involved with a number of high profile projects, including railway privatisation, the London Underground PPP and Crossrail, as well as dealing with European Union aviation policy, acting as secretary to the Department’s management board and being private secretary to the Minister for the Regions, Regeneration and Planning.  He developed a particular expertise dealing with matters at the interface of the public and private sector, in particular in relation to matters of financing, project management and regulatory compliance, including state aid.  As well having dealt  with both the development of Government policy and its implementation through both primary and secondary legislation, Ewan has extensive hands-on experience of running public procurements and dealing with requests made under the Freedom of Information Act.

Qualifications

  • 1981: Bachelor of Arts - Oxford University (First Class)
  • 1985: Master of Arts - Oxford University
  • 1992: Doctor of Philosophy - Oxford University
  • 1998: Master of Business Administration - Cranfield University
  • 2004: Graduate Diploma in Law  (Distinction)
  • 2005: Bachelor of Laws – London University  (First Class)
  • 2006: Bar Vocational Course  (all legal studies part-time)

Languages

Ewan speaks German and has a good reading knowledge of several European languages including French and Italian.

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