TBILISI/JULY 29 (The Bulletin) — The Anaklia Development Consortium (ADC) and one of its key investors filed separate arbitration claims against the Georgia government for cancelling its deal to build the new Black Sea port.
ADC and Bob Meijer, the investor, said that they are claiming a combined $1b for lost earnings linked to the project.
The Georgian government tore up the contract with the ADC in January because it said that ADC had failed to secure sufficient financial backing to build the new port, supposed to become Georgia’s principal entry and exit for goods being transported to and from China and Europe.
ADC, though, said that the contract was ripped up for political reasons. One of the main backers of the ADC project was, Mamuka Khazaradze, the founder of TBC Bank. TBC Bank is one of Georgia’s biggest high street banks and is listed on the London Stock Exchange but last year Mr Khazaradze was arrested for corruption, allegations he has said are politically motivated.
ADC said that this row between Mr Khazaradze and the Georgian government tarnished the project.
“The Government deliberately acted to ensure that ADC could not succeed with project development. In this instance the Government abused its power because the ruling party and its leader decided the project’s success was contrary to their own political and economic interests,” ADC said in a statement.
The statement also said that the ADC was bringing its action through the International Court of Arbitration of the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) in Paris and that Mr Meijer was pursuing his claim through the International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) in Washington.
— This story was published in issue 455 of the Central Asia & South Caucasus Bulletin, on July 31 2020.
— Copyright the Central Asia & South Caucasus Bulletin 2020