AG leaves for US to seek Reko Diq verdict review – Pakistan

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan Attorney General Anwar Mansoor went to Washington to seek a review of the decision of the International Center for Investment Dispute Settlement (ICSID) imposing a fine of $ 5.9 billion on Pakistan in the case of a mining contract Reko Diq finished.

The AG hastened to return to Islamabad from the United States to attend the pending case last Thursday related to the Gas Development Infrastructure Cess, which was settled before a bank of the Supreme Court of three judges headed by Judge Mushir Alam at the request of the government.

But when the case was discussed, the AG informed the bank that it will travel back to the United States on Friday to address some crucial legal issues.

Later, he confided to a group of reporters that he will go to Washington to prepare and file a review appeal at the Reko Diq Award.

The World Bank court has awarded a $ 5.97 billion prize against Pakistan

On July 12, 2019, the World Bank court called ICSID had slapped a huge award of $ 5.97 billion against Pakistan that includes $ 4.08 billion as a fine and $ 1.87 billion in interest, in its 700-page ruling.

ICSID was seized with a dispute between Pakistan and Tethyan Copper Company Pvt Limited (TCC) that had claimed $ 8.5 billion for the rejection of its request by the Baluchistan Mining Authority for the multi-million dollar lease in 2011.

Previously, Pakistan had accepted the statement in court that the mining agreement / license for the Reko Diq project had been obtained by corrupt means and, therefore, the CBT cannot claim damages.

But after the announcement of the award, Pakistan reacted quickly and Prime Minister Imran Khan formed a commission to investigate the reasons for this situation.

The commission also had the task of investigating who was responsible for making Pakistan suffer such a loss and what lessons were learned, so that mistakes made will not be repeated in the future.

Reko Diq is a small desert town in the Chagai district of Balochistan and is 70 km northwest of Naukundi, near Pakistan's border with Iran and Afghanistan.

The area is located in the Tethyan belt that extends from Turkey and Iran to Pakistan.

Reko Diq, which means "sand peak" in the Balochi language, is also the name of an ancient volcano and is famous for its vast reserves of gold and copper and is believed to be the fifth largest gold mine in the world.

In a previous press release from Antofagasta PLC, a joint venture held equally by Chilean and Canadian entities, namely Antofagasta and Barrick Gold Corporation, the damages included compensation of $ 4.08 billion in reference to the fair market value of the Reko Diq project at the time of the denial of mining lease and interest of $ 1.87 billion until the date of the award. In January 2013, a bank of the Supreme Court headed by the then president of the court, Iftikhar Mohammad Chaudhry, while accepting a petition from Dr. Abdul Haq Baloch, had declared the mining contract to the CBT for gold and copper exploration illegal .

Posted on Dawn, September 22, 2019



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