Dutch Supreme Court overturns $50-billion award to former Yukos shareholders, kicks case to lower court

On Friday, November 5, the Supreme Court of the Netherlands overturned a ruling for Russia to pay approximately $50 billion to former shareholders of the oil giant Yukos.

The Supreme Court found that in its 2020 ruling ordering Russia to pay damages, a lower appeal court wrongfully ignored the country’s claim that Yukos shareholders committed fraud in the arbitration procedure. The court dismissed Russia’s other objections, in particular, claims about the court’s jurisdiction. 

The case was referred to the Amsterdam Court of Appeal for more hearings and for judges there to render a decision on the relevant issue.

In 2014, The Hague Arbitration Court found that the Russian government illegally nationalized Yukos and awarded approximately $50 billion to former shareholders. The Dutch Supreme Court is the final authority that can block the compensation ruling, which has already come before several other international courts. 

In late December 2020, the Russian Constitutional Court effectively allowed the government not to comply with paying the arbitration award. 

Backstory

Dutch Supreme Court to consider Russia’s appeal over $50-billion award to former Yukos shareholdersDutch court seizes local rights to ‘Stolichnaya’ and ‘Moskovskaya’ vodkas to repay Russia’s debt to former Yukos shareholders

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