Sanader was given six years and Hernadi, who is beyond the reach of Croatia’s authorities, was given two years in this graft case.
The Andrej Plenković government also decided to launch a review of the 2016 ruling of the United Nations Commission on International Trade Law (UNCITRAL) under which Croatia lost an arbitration case it brought against MOL before that court based in Geneva.
The government authorized the Economy Ministry to request the Federal Supreme Court of Switzerland to review the UNCITRAL decision so as to declare an amended contract on the relationship between the shareholders in INA and a contract on the gas business, both signed in 2009, null and void.
The ministry is also authorized to continue activities concerning Croatia’s participation in the arbitration process which the Hungarian oil and gas company MOL initiated in 2013 before the International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID), an arbitration institution in Washington.
In February 2017, Croatia filed a lawsuit with the Swiss Federal Court requesting the annulment of the arbitration ruling in the case Croatia v. MOL that was conducted in line with UNCITRAL arbitration rules. However, the Swiss court rejected Croatia’s request in October that year.
In late December 2016, UNCITRAL overruled Croatia’s request to nullify amendments to a 2009 contract on management rights in the oil and gas company INA and a gas business master agreement, finding that evidence was not sufficient to prove that the amendments were the result of corruption activities.
This prompted Prime Minister Andrej Plenković to state on 24 December 2016 that his government had decided to regain ownership of INA by buying the entire stake held by MOL.
In August 2019 the government chose the Anglo-French investment bank Lazard as a consultant for its plans for the buyback. Lazard presented a preliminary report on due diligence in June 2020 and a final report in September 2020, giving an estimate of INA’s value.
MOL is the single largest shareholder in INA, holding 49.1% of the stock (4,908,207 shares), while the Croatian government holds 4,483,552 shares or 44.8%. Private and institutional shareholders hold 608,241 shares or 6.1%.
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