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Romania sues Enel at ICC International Court of Arbitration in Paris


The Energy Shares Administration Company (SAPE), a company detached from the Romanian energy company Electrica and currently subordinated to the Department of Energy, will file a case against Enel at the International Court of Arbitration of the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) in Paris regarding the sale by Electrica of the minority participation in its former Muntenia Sud branch, a release of the Department of Energy informs.

According to the quoted source, Minister-Delegate for Energy Razvan Nicolescu has presented a note to the Government to this effect on Wednesday.

'On this occasion, the members of the Executive were informed that the Romanian state, through SAPE, will request Enel to pay 521.583 million euro, invoking the 'put' option, as stipulated in the Government Decision 1163/27.11.2012. According to the clauses in the privatization contract signed in July 2007, Electrica has the right to sell to Enel, and Enel has the obligation to buy part or all of the entire 23.57 percent share of the former Electrica Muntenia Sud', the release shows.

'I have informed the government that we have decided not to extend the agreement memorandum signed with Enel on July 7, 2013, which is to expire on July 31, 2014. As a consequence, SAPE will open the arbitration procedures against Enel at the International Court of Arbitration of the International Chamber of Commerce in Paris', said Nicolescu.

Two weeks ago, the Italian energy group Enel has announced that its board has approved a plan to sell its energy production assets in Slovakia and its distribution and sales assets in Romania.

Enel owns three electricity distribution and supply former branches of Electrica, in the Romanian provinces of Muntenia (south), including Bucharest, Banat (west) and Dobrogea (southeast).

The Romanian Government, through Electrica, is still owning a 13.48-per-cent stake in the former Electrica Muntenia Sud branch, brought by Enel, and it asked 520 million euros for the stake, which Enel believes is too high.

'The exact value of the minority stake in Enel Muntenia Sud is not precisely stated in the privatisation agreement, but it should be computed against certain elements that can leave room for interpretations. In the case of a disagreement, the privatisation agreement says the parties will deploy all efforts to settle any litigation arising from the agreement through talks conducted in good faith,' Enel says in a response at the request of Agerpres.

Enel also says it has already had talks to this end with Electrica but no common denominator has so far reached.

'In the spirit of the provisions, talks have been conducted on the value after Electrica voiced option to sell, but the disagreement has so far not been settled to the mutual benefits of the parties. In such instance, when no agreement can be reached, there is always the possibility of bringing the case before the Paris-based International Court of Arbitration, in accordance with the international commercial practice,' says Enel.

In Romania, Enel is the owner of three former branches of the Electrica electricity distribution and supply corporation in Southern Muntenia Sud, Bucharest City including, Banat and Dobrogea.