Holcim takes Venezuela to court

24th March 2009, Comments 0 comments

The Swiss cement maker requests payment after Venezuela nationalises industry.

ZURICH - Swiss cement maker Holcim said Monday it is seeking help from an international arbitration panel in a dispute with the government of Venezuela over the nationalisation of its plants in the country.

The Washington-based International Center for Settlement of Investment Disputes is being asked to rule whether Holcim is entitled to full compensation for subsidiaries taken by Venezuela, the company said.

Holcim in 2008 agreed to sell the government an 85 percent stake in its plants for USD 552 million (CHF 621 million), staying on as a minority partner.

"No agreement was ever signed, and Holcim has received no compensation for the expropriated assets," the company said.

Holcim said Venezuela was violating a 1993 investment agreement signed between Caracas and Bern, and the company will seek compensation that is substantially higher than the originally agreed sales value.

AP / Expatica

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