Iranian Ministry of Petroleum on arbitration court ruling regarding NIGC-Turkmengaz dispute

SHANA — The General Directorate of Public Relations of the Iranian Ministry of Petroleum issued an announcement explaining the outcome of the International Court of Arbitration’s ruling regarding the dispute between the National Iranian Gas Company (NIGC) and Turkmengaz.

The text of the announcement of the General Directorate of Public Relations of the Ministry of Petroleum is as follows:

“Following the cessation of gas exports to Iran by Turkmengaz in early winter 2016, despite efforts by the National Iranian Gas Company to resolve financial disputes between the two sides through negotiations, Turkmengaz decided to refer the dispute to international arbitration.

“In accordance with the provisions of the agreements between the two countries, the matter was referred to the International Court of Arbitration in Switzerland. The arbitrator announced his decision to both parties on June 24, 2020.

“According to the rules of arbitration, this decision cannot be disseminated by any of the parties to the dispute, except with the agreement of the parties.

“It is important to note that the current dispute between Turkmengaz and the National Iranian Gas Company is only one dispute over the exact amount of debt owed to Turkmengaz and the National Iranian Gas Company’s claims related to the quantity and quality of Turkmenistan’s exported gas to Iran. Therefore, this commercial lawsuit has no winner or loser.

“What can be said about the outcome is that the issued judgement has different dimensions, in some cases the views of Turkmengaz Company and in some cases the views of the National Iranian Gas Company have been sustained.

“It is emphasized that, contrary to some rumor mills, the National Iranian Gas Company has not been subject to payment of any fines, as Turkmengaz’s request did not concern imposition of a fine on NIGC. As mentioned above, the only issue discussed in the arbitration was investigation of the debt of the National Iranian Gas Company to Turkmengaz for the gas received from Turkmengaz until the date of gas cut-off and the determination of the exact amount of fines on Turkmengaz concerning the quantity and quality of the delivered gas.

“However, we have always believed in resolving issues and disputes through negotiation, but referring a commercial case to arbitration is a common practice in international trade to resolve disputes.

“We hope that this ruling will pave the way for further development of relations between the two friendly and neighboring countries.”

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