Photograph: HINA/Fah

Slovenia must pay the Croatian power supply company HEP more than EUR 40 million for electricity that was not delivered to it from the jointly owned nuclear power plant Krsko in the period from 1 July 2002 to 19 April 2003, under a decision by the International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes in Washington, HEP said on Friday.

"The International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes, based in Washington, on 17 December 2015 ruled that Slovenia must pay HEP in excess of EUR 40 million for electricity that was not delivered to it from the Krsko nuclear power plant in the period from 1 July 2002 to 19 April 2003," HEP said in a statement.

The tribunal decided that Slovenia must pay damages in the amount of some EUR 20 million, plus interest, and 10 million US dollars to cover HEP's legal fees.

"We are satisfied with the final ruling of the International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes, notably so because the dispute lasted 10 years. I would like to say that we have been cooperating successfully with our Slovenian partners in the nuclear power plant Krsko and believe our cooperation will continue to develop to the mutual benefit," said HEP Management Board chair Perica Jukic.

In late July 1998 the Slovenian ELES power company switched off transmission lines running from Krsko to Zagreb after the Slovenian government adopted a regulation expropriating HEP of its 50% founder share in the Krsko plant.

This was followed by years of negotiations that resulted in the signing of an agreement between the two countries on the nuclear power plant Krsko in late 2001, the revoking of all of mutual claims incurred until 30 June 2002 and an agreement that the delivery of electricity from Krsko would begin again by 1 July 2002 at the latest.

HEP recalled that the case before the Washington tribunal was launched ten years ago. On 4 November 2005 HEP filed a motion to launch arbitration proceedings against Slovenia, claiming that it had incurred losses because it had to put into operation its more expensive power plants and import electricity instead of using cheaper electricity from Krsko.

Since then, both sides exchanged a number of written submissions and more than 20 witnesses were questioned at four hearings in Paris. After in 2009 the tribunal established that HEP's motion was founded, a legal battle was fought over the past six years to determine the value of damage sustained by HEP.

The ruling of the Washington tribunal cannot be appealed.

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