Gazprom, Lithuania both claim arbitration victory
Moscow/London, 3 August (Argus) — Russia's state-controlled Gazprom and the Lithuanian government both claimed victory as the Stockholm arbitration court gave its verdict on their long-lasting dispute over gas prices and the make-up of the board of Lithuanian utility Lietuvos Dujos.
“The arbitration acknowledged that Gazprom can by no means prohibit the Lithuanian government from questioning the eligibility of Lietuvos Dujos' management bodies,” the Lithuanian energy ministry said. Gazprom holds a 37.1pc stake in Lietuvos Dujos, while the state has 17.7pc.
But the tribunal ruled in favour “of most of Gazprom's demands against the Lithuanian energy ministry, relating to the ministry's initiation of court proceedings against Lietuvos Dujos and its management for breaking the shareholder agreement”, the Russian firm said.
In March 2011, the Lithuanian government won a decision in a Vilnius court to oust three Gazprom representatives from Lietuvos Dujos' board on the grounds that they ignored the interests of Lithuania and did not negotiate a fair gas price for Russian supplies.
The tribunal ruled that the Lithuanian government has no right to ask domestic courts to change commercial terms, Gazprom said.
The arbitration court asked the Lithuanian government to submit a separate claim over gas prices, the country's energy ministry said. Gazprom argued that the tribunal had ruled in favour of its position that only the shareholder agreement regulates changing commercial terms.
The other key shareholder in Lietuvos Dujos is Germany's Eon, with 38.9pc. Minority shareholders hold the remaining 6.3pc.
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