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Centre moves court to recover $3.8 bn from RIL, Shell, ONGC


New Delhi:The centre has moved the Delhi High Court to enforce a $3.8-billion recovery from Reliance Industries (RIL), Shell and ONGC following an English court ruling over its share from the Panna-Mukta and Tapti fields in western offshore, Oil Minister Dharmendra Pradhan said.
In a written reply in the Rajya Sabha, Pradhan said based on the Final Partial Award (FPA) dated October 12, 2016, the Directorate General of Hydrocarbons (DGH) had on May 25, 2017, raised demand for $3.8 billion on ONGC, RIL and Shell towards Government of India share of profit petroleum and royalty.
RIL and Shell challenged the FPA before the High Court in London. ONGC was not party to the arbitration.
“The High Court, London, rejected the petition filed by RIL and Shell on April 16, 2018, except on one issue which was remanded to the Arbitral Tribunal,” he said. “For enforcement of the FPA, Government has filed a petition before the Delhi High Court.” In December 2010, BG Exploration & Production India Ltd, which was subsequently acquired by Shell, and RIL, initiated arbitration against the Government of India (GoI) after a dispute over the state’s share of profit and royalty from Panna-Mukta and Mid and South Tapti contract areas off the west coast.
The Arbitration Tribunal gave its FPA on October 12, 2016. RIL and Shell initiated proceedings under the English Arbitration Act, 1996 to challenge the arbitration award before the English Commercial Court in November 2016.
On May 2, 2018, the court delivered its final judgment, remitting a significant issue for redetermination by the Tribunal within three months while disposing of eight other issues, RIL had said on May 24. The Arbitration Tribunal has scheduled a hearing to determine the remitted issue and will thereafter deliver an award, it had said.