What Eni and Vitol say about decision in international arbitration with Ghana

The long running legal dispute that Eni Ghana Exploration and Production and Vitol Upstream Ghana had initiated against the Ghana government was decided early this week, and everyone is telling their angle of the story.Eni and Vitol contested the actions of Ghana initiated by the Ministry of Energy, which had sought to compel a unitisation of the producing Sankofa oil field in Offshore Cape Three Points (OCTP) with an adjacent discovery in West Cape Three Points 2 (WCTP2), the Afina discovery, which has not been appraised or tested.

This is the story from the perspectives of Eni and Vitol.

The two oil companies say they have received a positive decision from an international arbitral tribunal regarding their unitisation dispute with the Republic of Ghana, ruling in favour of their long-standing opposition to the Ministry of Energy’s unitisation directives.

“The international arbitral tribunal has concluded that the unitisation directives were wrong and unlawful and that Republic of Ghana’s actions breached Ghanaian law and the terms of the OCTP Petroleum Agreement. The ruling is also without prejudice to Eni and Vitol’s right to claim damages if the wrongful directives are henceforth enforced,” they wrote in a press release copied to Ghana Business News. Eni Ghana and Vitol indicated that they remain committed to Ghana and to the OCTP project, a flagship project backed by the World Bank, which supplies Ghana a significant share of its gas for domestic use.

They also added that they have consistently maintained their willingness to assess the case for and against unitisation if the process were conducted fairly, transparently and in line with best international practices and Ghanaian law. However, they oppose the process adopted by the Republic of Ghana because of its failure to meet the applicable legal and industry requirements. Eni and Vitol value their relationship with the Republic of Ghana and hope this award will help bring this dispute to a close, thereby allowing all parties to focus on the continued development of Ghana’s oil and gas sector.

Source: ghanabusinessnews.com