The decisions of the Arbitration Tribunal in The Hague of February 24 on the protection of Ukrainian assets in annexed Crimea in the case of Airport Belbek and Igor Kolomoysky vs the Russian Federation, as well as in the case of PJSC CB PrivatBank and Finance Company Finilon vs the Russian Federation, are mandatory for Russia.
”Russia will no longer be able to evade the use of this mechanism for resolving disputes in relation to claims made in the framework of these two arbitration proceedings,” Andrey Bychkov, a lawyer at Ilyashev & Partners law firm, told UNIAN, commenting on the relevant decisions, with reservation that they were not published, therefore the comment is based on publically available data .
He assumes that the next stage can be a consideration of disputes on the merits.
”At the same time, the consideration of the dispute will continue regardless of the position of the Russian Federation on the tribunal`s jurisdiction. Even if in the future, Russia does not recognize the powers of the tribunal to consider these claims, the decisions of the tribunal will still remain mandatory,” the lawyer said.
At the same time, he noted that the Russian Federation could try to appeal the tribunal`s interim decisions of February 24, but the prospects for such an appeal seem very doubtful.
”Thus, the plaintiffs successfully overcame a very important stage in the arbitration proceedings, having managed to prove that Russia must be held accountable before Ukrainian investors for its actions in Crimea, and having established the procedure for bringing it to justice,” Bychkov said.
According to him, these decisions are a positive signal for other plaintiffs in similar cases against the Russian Federation, but they are not precedents, so other arbitrators will make their decisions within each individual arbitration process.
”Time will show what decisions will be made in other similar cases. But given the already existing positive practice of international arbitration, there is every reason to hope for similar solutions in other similar cases,” the lawyer added.