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Russian Gazprom loses multi-billion arbitration to German company Uniper

Russian Gazprom loses multi-billion arbitration to German company Uniper Gazprom loses multi-billion arbitration to German Uniper (Photo: Getty Images)

German energy company Uniper has won a multi-billion arbitration case against Russian energy corporation Gazprom. This allows Uniper to terminate inactive gas supply contracts and potentially sets a precedent for similar cases, according to Reuters.

This decision marks a significant victory for Uniper, which the German government had to bail out in 2022 after Gazprom initially cut, then stopped supplying, forcing the group to purchase replacement volumes at exorbitant prices on the spot market.

Uniper stated that the Stockholm arbitration court's decision on June 7 allowed it to terminate existing supply contracts that are legally still in place despite the absence of gas deliveries.

The tribunal also awarded the firm over €13 billion in compensation for the volumes of gas that Gazprom failed to deliver since mid-2022.

"This ruling provides legal clarity for Uniper. With the right of termination that we received in the arbitration ruling, we are ending the contracts with Gazprom Export," said Uniper CEO Michael Lewis.

The compensation primarily signifies a symbolic victory for Germany, as the likelihood of receiving large sums is slim, Reuters reported last month, citing legal sources, which CEO Lewis confirmed.

If the funds do materialize, they will go to the German government, which owns over 99% of Uniper's shares.

Sources previously told Reuters that the right to terminate inactive contracts would be more relevant ahead of Uniper's planned return to the stock market next year.

Disputes with Gazprom

Most of Russia's gas exports to Europe were halted after Russia invaded Ukraine in 2022, when Gazprom ceased supplies, and Western countries severed ties or imposed sanctions against energy supplies from Russia.

The disruptions triggered a series of legal disputes involving enormous sums of money: Russia demands payment for inactive contracts, while buyers seek reimbursement after not receiving deliveries.