TASR, 26.12.2013, EN


EuroGas gave Slovakia an ultimatum, wants compensation $ 1.65 billion

TASR , December 26, 2013


Since 2010, EuroGas signals its intention to commence arbitration with Slovakia. Its subsidiary Rozmin says that in 2004 the Slovak authorities have illegally taken away its Gemerska Poloma Talc deposit.
Bratislava 26 December ( TASR ) - EuroGas again wants to sue Slovakia in a case of illegal withdrawal of the mining rights for mining talc at Gemerska Poloma. Chairman Wolfgang Rauball confirmed it to TASR. The final offer prior to the commencement of Arbitration was delivered by EuroGas on 23. December to the President, Prime Minister, Minister of Economy and Finance, and the President of the Mining Office in Banská Štiavnica 
" EuroGas has previously claimed compensation of $ 1.65 billion for the lost investment . We are seeking the same compensation again unless the Slovak Republic comes back to our offer to negotiate a settlement by January 31, 2014" , said Rauball. Should Slovakia not respond to this last offer, EuroGas will immediately initiate legal action at the International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes ( ICSID ) in Washington D.C. 
"Arbitration at the ICSID would mean for Slovakia that there will be no appeal permitted against the ruling of the tribunal, only the possibility of appeal on the grounds of serious procedural errors. This would mean, especially in the case of defeat by the Defendant (Slovak Republic) that the Defendant would not be able to further delay payment of the damages granted in the Final Judgement as compensation by appealing to its National Courts and will have to make the damage payments at once, plus the interest and costs of arbitration. Otherwise, its assets will be garnisheed and executed by way of expropriation, said  attorney-at-law Jana Martinková to TASR.
Already since 2010 EuroGas has been announcing its intention to commence Arbitration with Slovakia. Its subsidiary Rozmin says that in 2004 Slovak authorities have illegally taken away its Mining Rights to the mineral deposit at Gemerskej Poloma. Rozmin itself is engaged in a long dispute about the mining rights at Gemerska Poloma with VSK Mining. This corporation is currently investing at this locality, based on the decision of the District Mining Office in Spisska Nova Ves in 2008. For lost investment in Gemerskej Poloma, EuroGas was previously seeking compensation of  € 500 million already in 2011. A year later, EuroGas Inc., a USA registered company, has also joined in the claim for damages. The total amount of requested compensation has climbed to $ 1.65 billion . Eurogas argued with a violation of rights by Slovakia under the 1991 Agreement between the CSFR (Czecho-Slovak Federal Republic) and the U.S.A. about mutual promotion and protection of investments. The Ministry of Finance of the Slovak Republic last year, however, denied that there was any violation of this Agreement .
Talc deposit in Gemerská Poloma, the subject of the dispute, was discovered by coincidence in 1985 in search of tin. The local talc is characterized by a high purity and experts consider the Gemerska deposit as one of the most important in the world. China is currently the largest talc producer, significant deposits are in the USA , Brazil and India; from the European countries Finland is a significant contributor to global production. The world-wide industrial use of talc particularly in the pharmaceutical, chemical, cosmetics and paper industries as well as consumption and demand for this raw material market continues to grow .