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Reko Diq case: British Virgin Islands high court attaches Pakistan’s assets

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Reko Diq case: British Virgin Islands high court attaches Pakistan’s assets
According to the court’s ex parte December 16 order, Pakistan cannot sell these assets

Hasnaat Malik December 24, 2020

photo file

PHOTO: FILE

Pakistan is faced with another setback on the international legal front as the British Virgin Islands high court ruled to attach certain assets belonging to the country’s institutions, sources revealed to The Express Tribune.
Sources informed that the British Virgin Islands high court passed an ex parte order on December 16 regarding the attachment of Pakistani institutions’ assets. In view of that order, Pakistan cannot sell these assets.
For the enforcement of the $6 billion award in the Reko Diq case, Tethyan Copper Company (TCC) has sought attachment of certain assets belonging to Pakistani institutions.

'Govt vigorously contesting matter'
Pursuant to the proceedings for the enforcement of the award before the high court of Justice in British Virgin Islands by TCC, the office of the Attorney General for Pakistan (AGP) has said that the government of Pakistan is vigorously contesting the matter with all legal resources available to it. Likeiwse, the government is also engaged in settling the matter actively.
Without prejudice to such engagement, it is reiterated that the government of Pakistan shall vigorously pursue proceedings initiated by the TCC in any jurisdiction and the government reaffirms its commitment to protecting national assets, wherever they may be located, says the statement issued by the AGP.
The International Center for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) on September 17 issued a 70-page order in which it was decided that the stay of enforcement of $6 billion award — the same forum rendered on July 12, 2019 — shall be continued on a conditional basis.
The order said Pakistan shall provide an “unconditional and irrevocable” bank guarantee or the LC for 25 per cent of the award, plus accrued interest as of the date of the decision. The guarantee or the LC was to come from a reputable international bank based outside of Pakistan, which was pledged in favour of the claimant — Tethyan Copper Company (TCC) — and to be released on the order of the ICSID.
The ICSID also held that if Pakistan could not furnish the security and undertaking in terms as set out within 30 days after notification of the decision, the stay of enforcement in the amount of 50 per cent of the award, plus accrued interest as of the date of the decision would be lifted. However, Pakistan missed the deadline and did not deposit 25 per cent bank guarantee.
Out of court settlement
Pakistani authorities are hopeful that the country will reach an out of court settlement with the TCC next year. Senior lawyers are of the opinion that the claimant company has no choice but to reach out for an out of court settlement as Pakistan has very limited assets abroad.
The TCC had initially claimed $11.43 billion in damages for the termination of their contract but Pakistan’s incumbent legal team was able to restrain the sum to $4.08 billion.
In 2012, the TCC filed a claim for international arbitration before the ICSID of the World Bank. The litigation carried on for seven years. Former chief justice of Pakistan Iftikhar Chaudhary’s judgment in the Reko Diq case was the first in the previous government’s tenure. The current Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) led government has already spent $10 million as legal expenditures on this case.
Many senior lawyers have been critical of the former CJP’s judgments which in the ensuing years have caused trouble for policymakers and stirred concerns amid international investors.
A senior official revealed that the “misstatement” of scientist Dr Samar Mubarakmand before the tribunal was one of the main reasons behind the ICSID slapping the heavy penalty on Pakistan.
Dr Samar had claimed that the Reko Diq gold mines would fetch the country around $2.5 billion annually. He had also maintained that Reko Diq and other gold reserves in the country will bring in $131 billion to the national exchequer. The tribunal relied on his statement.
Three different international firms were hired to plead the case before the ICSID. Cherie Blair, the wife of former UK prime minister Tony Blair, was leading Pakistan’s first legal team. Renowned lawyer Ahmar Bilal Sufi was assigned the task of hiring the team.
During the tenure of the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz government, then AGP Salman Aslam Butt had hired an international firm, Alen and Avery.
However, Alen and Avery was unable to find evidence of corruption in the contract between Pakistan and the TCC. Later, ex-AGP Ashtar Ausaf Ali engaged an American firm, GST, in the quantum stage. Only $1 million was paid to it. The firm raised 11 arguments of which seven were accepted at the quantum stage.
pakistan should not obey this verdict , they cant do anything against an atomic power .
 

Meengla

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Will the govt now arrest the ex cjp kana and punish him and seize his assets?
Makes my blood boil to see how many tens of billions of $$ got wasted in Pakistan because the stupid society decides to rise to the cause of stupid Justice Iftikhar Chaudry who, by all accounts now, has been responsible for the huge losses not only for Reko Diq but also for the Pakistan Steel Mills. And makes my blood boil to see the stupid Pakistani society, who were asking Musharraf to tackle the goons of the Lal Masjid, changed their positions almost overnight and made martyrs out of the terrorists goons of Lal Masjid!!!

Pakistan's Prime Minister had to kiss the a$$ of a spoiled-brat like the Saudi Mohd. bin Salman by driving him from the airport just to get a couple of billions of $ while the waste inside Pakistan goes on on much larger scale!!

But what needs to be done is to LEARN from these wishy-washiness and focus on stability and growth. There can't be anymore Messiahs in Pakistan. There can't be anymore Saviors in Pakistan. And there can't be anymore Anarchists in Pakistan. And there can't be 'accountability' to get a few hundred millions $ back from the corrupt to cause political crises costing billions $ more!
 

fitpOsitive

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Reko Diq case: British Virgin Islands high court attaches Pakistan’s assets
According to the court’s ex parte December 16 order, Pakistan cannot sell these assets

Hasnaat Malik December 24, 2020

photo file

PHOTO: FILE

Pakistan is faced with another setback on the international legal front as the British Virgin Islands high court ruled to attach certain assets belonging to the country’s institutions, sources revealed to The Express Tribune.
Sources informed that the British Virgin Islands high court passed an ex parte order on December 16 regarding the attachment of Pakistani institutions’ assets. In view of that order, Pakistan cannot sell these assets.
For the enforcement of the $6 billion award in the Reko Diq case, Tethyan Copper Company (TCC) has sought attachment of certain assets belonging to Pakistani institutions.

'Govt vigorously contesting matter'
Pursuant to the proceedings for the enforcement of the award before the high court of Justice in British Virgin Islands by TCC, the office of the Attorney General for Pakistan (AGP) has said that the government of Pakistan is vigorously contesting the matter with all legal resources available to it. Likeiwse, the government is also engaged in settling the matter actively.
Without prejudice to such engagement, it is reiterated that the government of Pakistan shall vigorously pursue proceedings initiated by the TCC in any jurisdiction and the government reaffirms its commitment to protecting national assets, wherever they may be located, says the statement issued by the AGP.
The International Center for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) on September 17 issued a 70-page order in which it was decided that the stay of enforcement of $6 billion award — the same forum rendered on July 12, 2019 — shall be continued on a conditional basis.
The order said Pakistan shall provide an “unconditional and irrevocable” bank guarantee or the LC for 25 per cent of the award, plus accrued interest as of the date of the decision. The guarantee or the LC was to come from a reputable international bank based outside of Pakistan, which was pledged in favour of the claimant — Tethyan Copper Company (TCC) — and to be released on the order of the ICSID.
The ICSID also held that if Pakistan could not furnish the security and undertaking in terms as set out within 30 days after notification of the decision, the stay of enforcement in the amount of 50 per cent of the award, plus accrued interest as of the date of the decision would be lifted. However, Pakistan missed the deadline and did not deposit 25 per cent bank guarantee.
Out of court settlement
Pakistani authorities are hopeful that the country will reach an out of court settlement with the TCC next year. Senior lawyers are of the opinion that the claimant company has no choice but to reach out for an out of court settlement as Pakistan has very limited assets abroad.
The TCC had initially claimed $11.43 billion in damages for the termination of their contract but Pakistan’s incumbent legal team was able to restrain the sum to $4.08 billion.
In 2012, the TCC filed a claim for international arbitration before the ICSID of the World Bank. The litigation carried on for seven years. Former chief justice of Pakistan Iftikhar Chaudhary’s judgment in the Reko Diq case was the first in the previous government’s tenure. The current Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) led government has already spent $10 million as legal expenditures on this case.
Many senior lawyers have been critical of the former CJP’s judgments which in the ensuing years have caused trouble for policymakers and stirred concerns amid international investors.
A senior official revealed that the “misstatement” of scientist Dr Samar Mubarakmand before the tribunal was one of the main reasons behind the ICSID slapping the heavy penalty on Pakistan.
Dr Samar had claimed that the Reko Diq gold mines would fetch the country around $2.5 billion annually. He had also maintained that Reko Diq and other gold reserves in the country will bring in $131 billion to the national exchequer. The tribunal relied on his statement.
Three different international firms were hired to plead the case before the ICSID. Cherie Blair, the wife of former UK prime minister Tony Blair, was leading Pakistan’s first legal team. Renowned lawyer Ahmar Bilal Sufi was assigned the task of hiring the team.
During the tenure of the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz government, then AGP Salman Aslam Butt had hired an international firm, Alen and Avery.
However, Alen and Avery was unable to find evidence of corruption in the contract between Pakistan and the TCC. Later, ex-AGP Ashtar Ausaf Ali engaged an American firm, GST, in the quantum stage. Only $1 million was paid to it. The firm raised 11 arguments of which seven were accepted at the quantum stage.
Can we settle this matter for ever?
 

Norwegian

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And there can't be 'accountability' to get a few hundred millions $ back from the corrupt to cause political crises costing billions $ more!
Accountability drive is to protect the country from future plunderers and not for getting old stolen money back.
 

CrazyZ

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What exactly is the worth of these gold assets in Reko Diq?
I haven't seen any official numbers just reports from media. Right now its in Pakistan's interest to understate the deposits and give Barrick nothing. Gold prices will remain elevated do to all the global central bank actions so the vultures will continue to circle.

GOP should attempt to exploit the resource without any official acknowledgement, IMO. Even if its not commercially exported, any gold can be held in the State banks vaults.

The issue will have to be settled out of court, IMO. World bank has limited enforcement capacity for non-world bank funded projects. Virgin Islands can't force Pakistan to do anything. Barrick dragging this out in courts will do nothing.
 

crankthatskunk

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Makes my blood boil to see how many tens of billions of $$ got wasted in Pakistan because the stupid society decides to rise to the cause of stupid Justice Iftikhar Chaudry who, by all accounts now, has been responsible for the huge losses not only for Reko Diq but also for the Pakistan Steel Mills. And makes my blood boil to see the stupid Pakistani society, who were asking Musharraf to tackle the goons of the Lal Masjid, changed their positions almost overnight and made martyrs out of the terrorists goons of Lal Masjid!!!

Pakistan's Prime Minister had to kiss the a$$ of a spoiled-brat like the Saudi Mohd. bin Salman by driving him from the airport just to get a couple of billions of $ while the waste inside Pakistan goes on on much larger scale!!

But what needs to be done is to LEARN from these wishy-washiness and focus on stability and growth. There can't be anymore Messiahs in Pakistan. There can't be anymore Saviors in Pakistan. And there can't be anymore Anarchists in Pakistan. And there can't be 'accountability' to get a few hundred millions $ back from the corrupt to cause political crises costing billions $ more!
Brother my blood had been boiling for a long while. Knowing a little how a country should be run, and how economic works, how state should behave, I had been agitated, raised my voice, still do whenever I see a wrong is done.

But unfortunately, our people are not only stupid but highly argumentative. They think they are right despite knowing deep down inside that they are wrong.

Their heads turns against little criticism they receive. A little power goes to their heads. Plenty of examples are find here too.

Those who signed these contracts and one eyed monster who passed stupid judgement should all be brought to the book and should bear the fruits of their actions. Accountability should be first priority in Pakistan, without it Pakistan is doomed.
 

Meengla

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Those who signed these contracts and one eyed monster who passed stupid judgement should all be brought to the book and should bear the fruits of their actions. Accountability should be first priority in Pakistan, without it Pakistan is doomed.
This has been my consistent position on PDF: Stability is the first priority. I am aware of 'accountability' starting from Ayub Khan's laws banning parties, and from Zia against PPP, and from PMLN and PPP against each other, and the recent versions. And I have never seen 'examples' made out of the looters and instead seen far many more billions lost because of political instability.

My message is: Try to get as much out of them as possible but don't make the country unstable. A fine line to be followed between 'accountability' and stability. Otherwise, as history is witness, Pakistan loses more by instability than by the looters.

STABILITY. STABILITY. STABILITY!!
 

crankthatskunk

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This has been my consistent position on PDF: Stability is the first priority. I am aware of 'accountability' starting from Ayub Khan's laws banning parties, and from Zia against PPP, and from PMLN and PPP against each other, and the recent versions. And I have never seen 'examples' made out of the looters and instead seen far many more billions lost because of political instability.

My message is: Try to get as much out of them as possible but don't make the country unstable. A fine line to be followed between 'accountability' and stability. Otherwise, as history is witness, Pakistan loses more by instability than by the looters.

STABILITY. STABILITY. STABILITY!!
I agree, stability should be achieved.

But the question is on what costs!!

Stability through Shahbaz Sharif!! One who can pervert the course of Justice by calling a judge to fix cases could be trusted!!
 

Meengla

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I agree, stability should be achieved.

But the question is on what costs!!

Stability through Shahbaz Sharif!! One who can pervert the course of Justice by calling a judge to fix cases could be trusted!!
Stability through anyone right now and for the next 20 years, but very preferably under Imran Khan!

Most failed or failing nations of the world couldn't manage power transitions or had too many 'revolutions' or are in some states of external or internal wars.
Pakistan is NOT a uniquely corrupt country but has lost two decades because of the instability in the Lost Decades of 1989-1999 and then 2008-2018.

I am basing my hypothesis upon studying (and witnessing) Pakistan's history. Problems in Pakistan are rooted in the Lost Decades. India took off in early 1990s while Pakistan lost two decades due to the political turmoil, violence and uncertainty. Until 1990, Pakistan was ahead of India in many respects. Also, Pakistan's problems are almost unique because Pakistan is, unlike most other countries with the exception of Israel, facing grave external, mortal threats. Existential threats. Pakistan needs coherence of policies, peace and stability above all.
 

crankthatskunk

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Stability through anyone right now and for the next 20 years, but very preferably under Imran Khan!

Most failed or failing nations of the world couldn't manage power transitions or had too many 'revolutions' or are in some states of external or internal wars.
Pakistan is NOT a uniquely corrupt country but has lost two decades because of the instability in the Lost Decades of 1989-1999 and then 2008-2018.

I am basing my hypothesis upon studying (and witnessing) Pakistan's history. Problems in Pakistan are rooted in the Lost Decades. India took off in early 1990s while Pakistan lost two decades due to the political turmoil, violence and uncertainty. Until 1990, Pakistan was ahead of India in many respects. Also, Pakistan's problems are almost unique because Pakistan is, unlike most other countries with the exception of Israel, facing grave external, mortal threats. Existential threats. Pakistan needs coherence of policies, peace and stability above all.
I am truly saddened from this reply. Shahbaz Sharif

1- Perverting the course of justice.
2- Money laundering.
3- Buying assets through family names from looted money.
4- Son Hamza running corruption business through bribes and backhanders. hindering progress in Pakistan.
5- Other son mastermind and ring runner of money laundering.

But SS is suitable for "Stability".
How did Pakistan became "Unstable" !! Who were the major players to throw Pakistan in to Abyss!!
Exactly.

Sanity gone bonkers.
 

Norwegian

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Stability through anyone right now and for the next 20 years, but very preferably under Imran Khan!

Most failed or failing nations of the world couldn't manage power transitions or had too many 'revolutions' or are in some states of external or internal wars.
Pakistan is NOT a uniquely corrupt country but has lost two decades because of the instability in the Lost Decades of 1989-1999 and then 2008-2018.

I am basing my hypothesis upon studying (and witnessing) Pakistan's history. Problems in Pakistan are rooted in the Lost Decades. India took off in early 1990s while Pakistan lost two decades due to the political turmoil, violence and uncertainty. Until 1990, Pakistan was ahead of India in many respects. Also, Pakistan's problems are almost unique because Pakistan is, unlike most other countries with the exception of Israel, facing grave external, mortal threats. Existential threats. Pakistan needs coherence of policies, peace and stability above all.
I am truly saddened from this reply. Shahbaz Sharif

1- Perverting the course of justice.
2- Money laundering.
3- Buying assets through family names from looted money.
4- Son Hamza running corruption business through bribes and backhanders. hindering progress in Pakistan.
5- Other son mastermind and ring runner of money laundering.

But SS is suitable for "Stability".
How did Pakistan became "Unstable" !! Who were the major players to throw Pakistan in to Abyss!!
Exactly.

Sanity gone bonkers.
He is a hypocrite. He wants democracy and stability. How is this even possible? When Benazir got democratic govt in 1988, who brought it down in 1990 but Nawaz Sharif? Then again in 1996 it was Nawaz Sharif that toppled Benazir second democratic govt. And now again in 2020 Nawaz Sharif is doing his best to topple this democratic Imran Khan govt. As long that traitor Nawaz Sharif exist, there won't be any stability.
This has been my consistent position on PDF: Stability is the first priority. I am aware of 'accountability' starting from Ayub Khan's laws banning parties, and from Zia against PPP, and from PMLN and PPP against each other, and the recent versions. And I have never seen 'examples' made out of the looters and instead seen far many more billions lost because of political instability.

My message is: Try to get as much out of them as possible but don't make the country unstable. A fine line to be followed between 'accountability' and stability. Otherwise, as history is witness, Pakistan loses more by instability than by the looters.

STABILITY. STABILITY. STABILITY!!
You can't have stability under democracy
I agree, stability should be achieved.

But the question is on what costs!!

Stability through Shahbaz Sharif!! One who can pervert the course of Justice by calling a judge to fix cases could be trusted!!
Get rid of all political parties and politicians and you will have stability
 

Imran Khan

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He is a hypocrite. He wants democracy and stability. How is this even possible? When Benazir got democratic govt in 1988, who brought it down in 1990 but Nawaz Sharif? Then again in 1996 it was Nawaz Sharif that toppled Benazir second democratic govt. And now again in 2020 Nawaz Sharif is doing his best to topple this democratic Imran Khan govt. As long that traitor Nawaz Sharif exist, there won't be any stability.

You can't have stability under democracy

Get rid of all political parties and politicians and you will have stability
yusuf raza gellani ko bhool gay kya ?????????????
 

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