Veolia has said it is ready to pay almost 35 million euros to Vilnius after the Stockholm Chamber of Commerce’s Arbitration Institute on November 30 issued its ruling in a seven-year dispute between the French energy group and the city.
“Veolia and Vilniaus Energija will pay 17.9 million euros to Vilnius Municipality and Vilniaus Silumos Tinklai (VST) and approximately 16.8 million euros in interest – 34.7 million euros in total,” Pawel Orlof, Veolia’s country director for Lithuania, said in a comment.
Veolia says it is ready to pay this amount immediately and is currently waiting for Vilnius Municipality and the municipal heat supply company VST to provide the account details for transferring the money.
VST spokeswoman Monika Merkyte told BNS that she could not provide any details on the matter because lawyers were still working on it.
Vilnius Municipality and VST have said in a statement that according to the arbitration award, Veolia and Vilniaus Energija, a local company controlled by the French group, have to pay the city 83 million euros in damages, comprising more than 61.5 million euros in cash (including about 3 million euros in legal costs) and 21.5 million euros in assets.
At the same time, the municipality and its heat supply company have to pay around 26.9 million euros to the former lessees of the capital’s heating sector, including 10.9 million euros for assets and about 16 million euros for litigation costs, according to the statement.
Meanwhile, Veolia calculates that it has to pay Vilnius around 35 million euros after deducting about 26 million in damages awarded to the group, including interest, from roughly 61 million euros awarded to the city, including 41.7 million euros for emission allowances and some 17 million euros in interest.
From this amount, the municipality and VST will have to pay a success fee of around 10 million euros to Profile Investment, a Luxembourg-based venture capital fund.
The city and VST sought 560 million euros in damages from Veolia at the Stockholm arbitration court. The French group says, however, that they demanded around 850 million euros plus interest from it.
The municipality says that the arbitration court ruled that Veolia and Vilniaus Energija had breached the terms of the 2002-2017 lease agreement by misappropriating emission allowances, and recognized other breaches of the 15-year agreement.
Veolia and Vilniaus Energija have said, however, that the court dismissed most of the municipality’s claims. According to them, despite efforts by the municipality and VST to portray Veolia during the proceedings as a corrupt company manipulating facts, spreading false statements and failing to fulfil its contractual obligations, the court rejected all these allegations.
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