13:17 23.01.2018

Court gives Feb 20 as date for main session in Tatneft's $112 mln case against Ukraine

Court gives Feb 20 as date for main session in Tatneft's $112 mln case against Ukraine

The Moscow Arbitration Court have given February 20 as the date for the main session in Tatneft's (MOEX: TATN) lawsuit against Ukraine on the recognition and enforcement of the ruling of international arbitration totaling $112 million, an Interfax correspondent reported from the courtroom.

The parties to the lawsuit continued their dispute over jurisdiction in the case on Tuesday, as well as the presence in Russia of Ukrainian property that could be seized under Tatneft's lawsuit.

Tatneft maintains that a portion of the Ukrainian Cultural Center on Arbat Street in Moscow might be subject to confiscation since it is used for commercial purposes. In turn, Ukraine argues that the Cultural Center enjoys diplomatic immunity.

Tatneft began the arbitration process against Ukraine in 2008 in accordance with the Russian-Ukrainian agreement on compensation and mutual protection of investment due to the situation surrounding Ukrtatnafta.

Ukrtatnafta was founded on orders from the presidents of Ukraine and Tatarstan in 1994 on the basis of the Kremenchuk Oil Refinery in Poltava region. Companies close to Tatneft previously held 18.296% of shares in Ukrtatnafta, Tatarstan's Property Ministry owned 28.7788%, and Tatneft owned 8.6% outright. Following litigation, the stake of the Tatarstan shareholders was reduced to virtually zero, and the refiner acquired new shareholders close to the Privat Group, which is owned by Ukrainian oligarchs Ihor Kolomoysky and Hennadiy Boholiubov.

International arbitration ruled in favor of Tatneft in 2014, ordering Ukraine to pay $112 million in compensation plus interest. Later that year, Ukraine commenced proceedings before the Paris Court of Appeals in an attempt to set aside that award, but the Paris court upheld it in a ruling handed down on November 29, 2016.

Meanwhile, Tatneft filed in Moscow Arbitration Court and London High Court in April 2017 seeking to secure payment of the international arbitration award.

The Moscow court dismissed the case on June 27. Tatneft subsequently appealed that decision and the Moscow Arbitration Appeals Court ordered the case returned to the lower court.

At the end of July, the London court recognized the validity of the international arbitration ruling.

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