Rockhopper contests Ombrina Mare decision
Rockhopper Exploration has started international arbitration proceedings against the Republic of Italy concerning the Ombrina Mare project in the Adriatic Sea.
In February 2016, Italy’s Ministry of Economic Development decided not to award Rockhopper a production concession covering the Ombrina Mare field.
Rockhopper is now considering its options with regard to obtaining damages and compensation from the government for what it claims is a breach of the Energy Charter Treaty (ECT).
The latter entered into legal force in April 1998 and is designed to provide a stable platform for energy sector investments. Italy, as a member of the European Union, was a founding signatory to the ECT.
Based on legal and expert opinions, Rockhopper believes it has strong prospects of recovering significant damages as a result of the breaches: these would be sought on the basis of lost profits.
In addition, the company has secured non-recourse funding for the arbitration from a funder that specializes in financing commercial litigation and arbitration claims.