Cairn Energy freezes Indian state-owned property in Paris

Cairn Power stated it had successfully seized Indian state-owned homes in Paris, in a dramatic escalation of the battle between the Scottish oil manufacturer and the federal government of Narendra Modi.

The motion via Cairn is the most recent try to drive India to pay $1.7bn awarded via a global tribunal over a tax dispute.

Cairn, which has a marketplace capitalisation of simply £752m and best 180 workers, was once awarded the sum closing 12 months following a long-running arbitration.

It says it has known $70bn of belongings all over the world starting from structures to Air India airplane that it should attempt to grab so long as the Modi govt refuses to pay.

Its asset freeze utility in Paris is the primary to be triumphant. The corporate stated it will successfully switch the possession of 20 homes valued at greater than €20m, together with within the sixteenth and 14th arrondissements. Legit paperwork observed via the Monetary Occasions showed the French courtroom had permitted the freeze.

The method is very similar to that of US hedge fund Elliott Capital Control, which in 2012 seized an Argentine naval vessel in Ghana over a debt dispute. Cairn has even employed attorney Dennis Hranitz, who labored at the Elliott dispute.

Cairn, which is primarily based in Edinburgh and indexed in London, has driven for UK govt beef up to assist with its declare, however has grown annoyed on the gradual development and the refusal of the Modi govt to pay up. The United Kingdom govt has aggressively pursued a post-Brexit business take care of India.

The oil team stated the freeze at the homes licensed via the French Court docket, Tribunal Judiciaire de Paris, was once a “important preparatory step to taking possession of the homes and guarantees that the proceeds of any gross sales could be because of Cairn”.

Analysts say New Delhi’s unwillingness to honour the world arbitration award and to as an alternative proceed to attraction towards the judgment in courtroom follows a development of the Modi govt’s refusal to recognize any mistakes in its governance. Any payout made now to Cairn may well be learn as a tacit acknowledgment of wrongdoing.

“This govt is fairly transparent — they can not admit they made a mistake — despite the fact that it’s staring you within the face,” stated Partha Mukhopadhyay, a senior fellow at New Delhi’s Centre for Coverage Analysis, previous this 12 months.

Underneath a legislation handed in 2012, India retroactively demanded $1.4bn in tax bills from Cairn Power associated with the United Kingdom team’s flotation of its Indian subsidiary at the Bombay Inventory Trade in 2007.

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In December a Dutch arbitration tribunal discovered India had violated its duties underneath the UK-India Bilateral Funding Treaty in 2014 when tax officers seized Cairn Power’s residual 10 in line with cent stake within the subsidiary, which it offered to Vedanta.

The Indian govt didn’t reply to a request for remark.

“Our sturdy desire stays an agreed, amicable agreement with the federal government of India to attract this subject to an in depth,” Cairn stated, including it had submitted “an in depth collection of proposals to them since February this 12 months”.

“On the other hand, within the absence of this sort of agreement, Cairn should take all important criminal movements to give protection to the pursuits of its world shareholders.”

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