James Kahika advises government, multinational, and regional clients across sectors including defense and aerospace, energy and resources, infrastructure, healthcare, banking, telecommunications, and sports. He specifically advises on cross-border mergers and acquisitions, private equity investment, energy and infrastructure projects, complex joint ventures, corporate structuring, and commercial transactions.
Prior to joining Morgan Lewis, James practiced at global law firms in Abu Dhabi, the Sultanate of Oman, and Australia. He has extensive experience across markets in the Middle East and Asia Pacific.
Before practicing law, James served as an Infantry Team Leader in the Australian Army. During his thirteen-year military career, James served on operational deployments to Afghanistan, Iraq, Timor-Leste and the Solomon Islands.
Represented a Middle East Pension Fund on its investment relating to USD 175 million of convertible bonds issued by a Hong Kong listed company.
Represented a government owned defence holding company on the proposed USD 210 million acquisition of shares in a global aerospace, defence and technology holding company with operations across Africa, Middle East and US.
Advised a US defense contractor on its proposed incorporated joint venture in the United Arab Emirates, including approval of the joint venture as an offsets project pursuant to the Tawazun Economic Program.
Represented a private investment office on its acquisition of a healthcare group in Abu Dhabi, including restructuring of the healthcare group under a holding company incorporated in the Abu Dhabi Global Market.
Represented a Japanese multinational crane manufacturing and distribution group on its USD 215 million global acquisition of a US multinational crane manufacturer with operations across the Middle East, Asia Pacific, Europe and US.
Part-time secondment and follow-on retainer engagement with an International Airline in the United Arab Emirates.
Part-time secondment and follow-on retainer engagement with a government defence group in the United Arab Emirates.
Advised on the merger of two sovereign wealth funds in the United Arab Emirates, which consolidated a global portfolio of assets exceeding USD 250 billion.
Advised a private investment office on its global restructure of real estate assets.
Advised a government owned defence company on its entry into a USD multi-million agreement to provide major refit services to warships operated by the United Arab Emirates Armed Forces.
Advised a government owned defence company on its entry into a USD multi-billion agreement to provide maintenance, repair, calibration and overhaul services for fixed wing aircraft operated by the United Arab Emirates Armed Forces.
Advised a government owned defence company on its entry into a USD multi-billion agreement to provide maintenance, repair, calibration and overhaul services for rotary wing aircraft operated by the United Arab Emirates Armed Forces.
Represented a sovereign wealth fund on its acquisition of shares in the USD 1.03 billion Sohar Independent Water Project in the Sultanate of Oman.
Represented a sovereign wealth fund on its USD 50 million acquisition of an interest in a telecommunications company in the Sultanate of Oman.
Represented a multinational engineering group on its divestment of assets across the Middle East.
Represented a global banking group on its divestment of assets across the Middle East.
Advised the government of Lao PDR, represented by the Ministry of Energy and Mines, on its joint venture with a Chinese consortium to develop energy projects in Lao PDR.
Represented a sovereign wealth fund on its USD 52 million joint venture to develop and operate a private hospital in the Sultanate of Oman.
Advised on the proposed merger of two listed banks in the Sultanate of Oman.
Advised a sovereign wealth fund on its joint venture to conduct exploration and mining activities in the Sultanate of Oman.
Advised a regional group on its joint venture to provide aluminium smelting fabrication services across the Middle East.
Advised a free zone company in the United Arab Emirates on its joint venture to manufacture armoured vehicles and provide service support to the Sultan of Oman's Armed Forces and the Royal Oman Police.
Represented a US rotary wing aviation group on its acquisition of an Australian airline group.
Advised an international airline on its USD 22.2 million acquisition of an interest in a listed airline in Australia.
Advised an international hotel group on its global corporate restructure.
Represented a Chinese consortium on its USD 3.6 billion development of the Queens Wharf Integrated Resort Project in Brisbane, Australia.
Represented a listed mining company in Australia on its USD 1.15 billion joint venture with a Chinese consortium to develop the Iron Bridge and Glacier Valley iron ore projects in the Pilbara Region of Western Australia.
College of Law, Queensland, 2014, Diploma of Legal Practice
Bond University, Queensland, 2014, Bachelor of Laws, Honours
Queensland Law Society
Supreme Court of Queensland
Federal Court of Australia
High Court of Australia
Awards and Affiliations
Co-Secretary, Australian Business Group Abu Dhabi (2018 – 2019)