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    Ascent Warns Slovenia of Impending Lawsuit


It says the government is breach of its obligations under several agreements to which it is a signatory.

by: William Powell

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Ascent Warns Slovenia of Impending Lawsuit

UK listed minnow Ascent Resources has formally notified the Slovenian government of the existence of disputes under the UK-Slovenia bilateral investment treaty and the Energy Charter Treaty, it said July 24. The step takes the two entities closer to international arbitration.

At the start of last month it warned that it had little choice, given the problems and delays it had faced with an approvals process in order to hydraulically fracture a well.

It said that "certain actions which have caused considerable harm to the investors' investments in Slovenia" are in breach of protections established by bilateral investment treaties and the Energy Charter Treaty. These protections include the guarantee that the investments would be accorded fair and equitable treatment and Slovenia's guarantee that the management, maintenance, use, enjoyment or disposal of the investments would not be impaired by arbitrary, unreasonable or discriminatory measures.

Ascent said it remained hopeful of an amicable solution but that it had reserved "all of its rights and remedies" arising out of what it believes to be Slovenia's treaty breaches and is prepared to submit its investment dispute with Slovenia to international arbitration.