Slovenia, Ascent Resources remaines committed to defending its investment

, SEE Energy News

As a total ban on hydraulic fracking in Slovenia has entered into force, UK-based Ascent Resources, which is still in dispute with the state over the granting of permit to extract gas by fracking at the Petisovci field, said that it remaines committed to defending its investment.

The statement from the company said that it has formally notified the Slovenian Government of further breaches under the UK-Slovenia bilateral investment treaty and the Energy Charter Treaty. It added that the Government had been notified that the amendments to the Mining Law that specifically prohibit holders of mining rights from carrying out the exploration or exploitation of hydrocarbons with the use of any hydraulic stimulation had caused further considerable harm to its investment in Slovenia.

Ascent Resources said that it remained committed to defending its investment of over 50 million euros in Slovenia and that it would vigorously pursue its damages claim through in international arbitration. However, it hopes that an amicable solution to the dispute could be found and following the failure of earlier negotiations with the government, it welcomes any constructive proposals that compensate it for its losses.

Ascent Resources announced it would initiate arbitration proceedings against Slovenia over the dispute in March 2021 after the state had failed to set forward a damages proposal. The company has estimated damage to be in excess of 100 million euros.

Ascent Resources has entered into a Joint Operating Agreement (JOA) with the Slovenian company Geoenergo under which it manages operations in the Petisovci oil and gas field. In August 2016, Geoenergo announced that Croatian oil company INA will purchase natural gas from two wells in northeastern Slovenia and transport it to its central gas station in Molve for further processing and cleaning.

The current concession for Petisovci gas field was awarded to Geoenergo in 2002 and is due for renewal in 2022.

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