No Grounds for Signing Concession: Decision on Gruž Terminal Made in Zagreb

Lauren Simmonds

There are no legal grounds for the signing of a concession with the French-Turkish consortium.

As Dubrovacki Dnevnik reports on the 6th of October, 2017, at today’s session of the Management Board of the Port of Dubrovnik Administration, held in Zagreb, it was decided that there are no legal grounds for the signing of a concession agreement for the construction of a passenger terminal at Gruz port with the Dubrovnik-based international cruise port investment (DICPI).

Today’s decision marked the official rejection of any signing of a concession with the Turkish-French consortium, the deadline for its signing was three days, more specifically, by October the 9th, 2017.

”We still remain [firm] in our position that there can be no concession if the legal grounds are not met. As the President of the City Council, I’m very proud of this decision, which is a continuation of our credibility regarding this matter, which is very important for the future of Dubrovnik. This decision, of course, doesn’t mean that we aren’t open to potential investors and investments, but that their intentions do have to be in line with legality, and that was not the case here” stated Marko Potrebica.

Director of the Port Authority of Dubrovnik, Blaž Pezo, explained what the next steps to be taken in this case are. By mid-November, the process of conciliation procedure with the Turkish-French consortium will proceed.

”We’ll see how things go. This is a procedure before any lawsuits are filed,” Pezo noted.

The consortium had previously threatened to sue the Republic of Croatia via the means of an arbitral tribunal for stopping their project, and Dubrovnik’s HDZ believed that even if a potential arbitration was lost, the subsequent damage would be considerably lower than what would have occurred by allowing the French-Turkish consortium to go ahead with their plans under the unusual proposed conditions.

It is worth pointing out that in spite of pressure piled on them from the consortium in question, Pezo, Potrebica and others, more precisely HDZ in Dubrovnik on a local level, never gave up on their initial position that a potential investor should not be given concessions under strange conditions.

The citizens of Dubrovnik were not fans of the series of gaps, mysteries and controversies surrounding the French-Turkish consortium from day one, and the somewhat murky transparency of the whole project from the very beginning was more than questionable, to say the least.


Translated from Dubrovacki Dnevnik


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