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Minimum US$95 million compensation claim lodged against Tanzania

30 September 2020

Indiana Resources has provided an update on the dispute with the Government of Tanzania over the illegal expropriation of the Ntaka Hill Nickel Project and other breaches of the Agreement between the Government of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland and the Government of the United Republic of Tanzania for the Promotion and Protection of Investments.

As the majority shareholder in Ntaka Nickel Holdings (NNHL) and Nachingwea UK (NUK) (both incorporated in the United Kingdom) Indiana is the manager of the Joint Venture for the Project and is leading activities with regards to this matter.

The Company is pleased to advise that NUK, NNHL and its subsidiary Nachingwea Nickel (NNL) have now lodged a Request for Arbitration (RfA) with the International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID), part of the World Bank, in accordance with the Convention on the Settlement of Investment Disputes between States and Nationals of Other States (the ICSID Convention).

The RfA contains a background to the dispute, a summary of the Claimant’s claims and an initial estimate of compensation for loss of the Project and damages sustained by the Investors resulting from the actions of the Government of Tanzania, which is currently in excess of US$95 million.

Documents relating to the RfA have now been sent by ICSID to H. E. The Hon John Magufuli President of the United Republic of Tanzania, The Hon Doto M. Biteko, Minister for Minerals and Prof Adelardus Kilangi, Attorney General of Tanzania notifying them of the arbitration proceedings. ICSID should soon proceed to formally register the case.

The ICSID Convention has been ratified by 154 States, including Tanzania. An award issued by an ICSID tribunal is enforceable in any one of those 154 member States as if it were a judgment of one of their own courts.

Partly because of this, States have overwhelmingly and historically complied voluntarily with the payment terms of such awards.

The Company has engaged LALIVE, an international law firm, to act on its behalf. LALIVE has offices in Geneva, Zurich, and London, and specialises in international arbitration.

The firm has extensive experience in international investment arbitration concerning mining and other natural resources and is representing investors and States as counsel worldwide.

Indiana’s Executive Chairman Bronwyn Barnes says:

“We have worked diligently over the past six months to prepare to lodge our request for arbitration with ICSID and place an estimate on the value of the claim for compensation for the expropriation of the Project.

“The lodgement of our RfA formally commences the arbitration process and we will now prepare to present our full claim for compensation for the loss of the asset and damages resulting from the actions of the Tanzanian Government.

“With litigation funding in place to support all legal costs relating to arbitration, we can proceed to prepare for arbitration knowing that shareholders’ interests have been fully protected and will not incur any further losses in seeking compensation.

“I would also like to reaffirm that US$95 million is our minimum compensation claim and there is clear scope for this amount to increase once our full claim for compensation is put forward. I look forward to updating shareholders on the arbitration process in due course.”

Source: Mining Review Africa

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