A Russian court has ordered nearly $500 million of assets belonging to German industrial gases company Linde to be frozen at the request of a Russian joint venture building a gas complex at the Baltic Sea port of Ust-Luga, court filings showed Monday.
RusKhimAlyans, the joint venture which is 50% owned by Russia's Gazprom, asked the Court of Arbitration of St Petersburg and the Leningrad Region to freeze Linde assets worth 35 billion roubles ($488 million) as a preventative measure.
In 2021, Linde and Renaissance Heavy Industries signed an engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contract with Gazprom and its partners for the Ust-Luga gas complex. Linde notified the customer in May and June 2022 that it had suspended work under the contract due to European Union sanctions imposed after Russia's invasion of Ukraine.
RusKhimAlyans alleges, according to the document, that EU sanctions ban supplying equipment for the liquefied natural gas (LNG) plant but do not cover equipment required for the other part of the Ust-Luga complex - a gas processing plant.
RusKhimAlyans intends to apply to the Hong Kong International Arbitration Centre to recover advance payment and losses worth around 972 million euros ($1 billion) and 7.6 billion roubles, according to the court filings.
Linde did not immediately respond to an email seeking comment.
($1 = 71.7830 roubles)
($1 = 0.9360 euros)
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