Hungary/Croatia: MOL continues talks with INA on its future status

, SEE Energy News

Croatia minister of economy recently stated that talks between INA and MOL on INA future, after announcement from MOL that it plans to sell its shares in INA, are never ending story. MOL is also quite determined to set the future of INA within its business strategy.

Croatia is preparing for May the next round of talks with Hungary’s MOL over the joint management of Zagreb-based oil and gas company INA, a spokesperson for the Croatian economy ministry confirmed in a press release.

MOL owns 49.08% of INA and the Croatian government controls a further 44.84%. In September 2013, the two sides launched talks to renegotiate the terms for the company’s management.

In August 2013, the Croatian government said the decision to renegotiate the terms of the management of INA came on the back of the deteriorating performance of the Zagreb-based company over the past years and underinvestment in its refineries, among other issues.

In November, two months after the launch of talks, MOL said its executive board had been authorized to start preparations for the sale of the company’s stake in INA.

On the backdrop of the ongoing negotiations, MOL filed in November 2013 for international arbitration against the government in Zagreb at the World Bank’s International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes for breaching certain of its obligations in relation to the Hungarian company’s investments in Croatia. Then in January 2014, the Croatian government filed for arbitration with the Permanent Court of Arbitration in The Hague.