Romania tells OMV there is no reason to amend Offshore Law
Romania's prime minister Marcel Ciolacu told representatives of OMV group and local subsidiary OMV Petom, whom he met on September 18, that there is no reason to amend the Offshore Law.
The Austrian group met Romanian authorities in an attempt to negotiate amendments to the Offshore Law, already challenged by OMV before international arbitrage bodies for the provisions that allegedly restrict oil companies' capacity to freely export offshore natural gas produced locally. OMV specifically challenges Romania's preemptive rights on the offshore natural gas produced on its territory, former minister of energy Virgil Popescu, involved in drafting the law, explained.
Romania's PM Cioacu put the meeting with the OMV representatives in the context of Austria's refusal to accept Romania as a full Schengen member. He implied that the tensions between the two countries could, in principle, "impact the credibility" of the Austrian company.
According to a statement from the government of Romania, PM Ciolacu expressed his hope that "the attitude of the Austrian prime minister, Karl Nehammer, to continue to oppose Romania's accession to Schengen completely unjustifiably, will not affect the image of OMV Petrom in Romania," arguing that such situation would be undesirable for both parties.
OMV Petrom submitted this year to the International Court of Arbitration in Paris a claim against the Romanian state, through the National Mineral Resources Agency (ANRM), related to the regime for the sale of gas from the Black Sea, provided for by the Offshore Law.
(Photo source: gov.ro)