Уместо највећег соларног парка на свету вредног 1,7 милијарди евра, Србија ће од фирме Securum Equity Partners добити тужбу од 160 милиона евра
Поменута фирма тражила је од Владе Србије да јој обезбеди 3.000 хектара земљишта за изградњу соларне електране снаге 1.000 мегавати. У Министарству енергетике тврде да су им понудили парцеле укупне површине 30.000 хектара, десет пута више него што је тражено, али да је овој фирми одговарало мање од 200 хектара.
Упућени тврде да ова фирма, регистрована на оффсхоре територије није ни планирала да гради соларни парк, него јој је циљ био да по повољним условима дође до 3.000 хектара земљишта које би касније препродавала другим фирмама.
„Наша страна је предложила да на тој површини изграде соларне панеле снаге 100 магавата. Међутим, ни та инвестиција није почела да се реализује, што показује да инвеститор није имао озбиљну намеру да гради соларни парк“, објашњавају у Министарству енергетике.
У овом министарству тврде да су они још на почетку имали примедби на овај документ јер су сматрали да са техничке стране није изводљив, јер је реч о гигантском соларном парку какав за сада не постоји нигде а свету, али су на инсистирање Министарства финансија, који је први потписиник споразума, прихватили да дају шансу инвеститору.
Саветници за инвестиције објашњавају за Блиц да је већ сама адреса фирме које је регисторвана на оффсхоре Кајманским острвима и Малти, требало да буде аларм да озбиљније провере фирму која им обећава милијарде. Ни оффсхоре територија, ни то што немају искуства у пословима ове врсте, ни сајт на којем нема никаквих информација о фирми, запосленима или историјату пословања, нису били довољан знак да нешто није у реду, па је тек накнадно, кроз провере антикорупцијског тима Министарства енергетике, утврђено да постоје индиције да је фирма сличне ангажмане покушала да реализује у још неки државама, такође без успеха.
Ипак, представници ове фирме и даље су у Београду, а тужба још није поднета.
„Месецима смо покушавали да ступимо у контакт са неким из Владе. Тужбу смо могли да подигнемо још у априлу, а ако се ускоро ништа не реши тражићемо и пенале за кашњење од 900.000 евра и поднећемо тужбу“, каже Александра Маројевић ПР фирме Сецурум Еqуитy Партнерс
Securum Equity Partners sent Termination Letter to the Republic of Serbia for the OneGiga Project and will present a lawsuit of EUR 160 million to the International Court of Arbitration of London
Securum Equity Partners wished to realize an investment project in Serbia for the construction of a solar park, valued approximately EUR 1.75 billion, which had to be completed by the end of December 2015. The project had to be realized by constructing 100 photovoltaic plants of 10 MW each, with total installation power of 1,000 MW.
The previous Government, precisely the Ministry of Environment, Mining and Spatial Planning sent a letter of support to Securum Equity Partners on October 25, 2011 (see:ANNEX_001). “The Ministry shall, within its jurisdiction and with the objective to realize this investment project efficiently, provide its full support. We hope you will prove to be successful while realizing your activities and that we shall continue to cooperate in a successful manner” was written in the letter signed by the State Secretary Mr. Bojan Djuric. On the same day, a second letter of support for the project realization was also sent by the Ministry of Economics and Regional Development, signed by the State Secretary Mr. Branislav Zec (see: ANNEX_002). A third letter of support arrived on November 7, 2011 also from the Ministry of Infrastructure and Energy (see: ANNEX_003). “The Ministry of Infrastructure and Energy wishes to express its support for introduced project within its jurisdiction and in the accordance with the legislative system of the Republic of Serbia, as well as in accordance with the already delivered letters of support to the company from the Ministry of Environment, Mining and Spatial Planning and the Ministry of Economics and Regional Development”, stated the letter signed by the State Secretary Mr. Dusan Mrakic. The Framework Agreement on regulating the mutual rights and obligations between the Republic of Serbia and Securum Equity Partners for investing into renewable sources of energy was signed on November 18, 2011 (see: ANNEX_004). A Memorandum of Understanding was also signed between the Republic of Serbia and Securum Equity Partners International Ltd on May 12, 2012 (see: ANNEX_005) in the presence of the then Prime Minister Mr. Mirko Cvetkovic. Both non-legally binding documents were signed on behalf of the Republic of Serbia by the then appointed Minister Mr. Oliver Dulic.
Mr. Alessio Colussi (CEO, Securum Equity Partners) and
Mr. Oliver Dulic (Minister of the Environment, Mining and Spatial Planning)
Mr. Mirko Cvetkovic (Prime Minister)
Mr. Bojan Djuric (State Secretary)
Before the signing of the Memorandum of Understanding, on 4 April 2012, Securum Equity Partners International Ltd, an EU holding company based in Malta, incorporated a new company in Belgrade, named Onegiga Solar Park Incubator d.o.o., specifically dedicated to develop the OneGiga Project.
The legally binding Umbrella Agreement between the Republic of Serbia, as one party, andOnegiga Solar Park Incubator d.o.o. and Securum Equity Partners International Ltd, as the other parties, was signed on October 26, 2012 with the present Government (see:ANNEX_006). On the basis of the Umbrella Agreement, the Republic of Serbia could, in the period of 25 years, realize a profit of over EUR 700 million in terms of taxation, wouldimprove its international image and open more then hundred new job positions. According to Article 3.3.1 the Republic of Serbia committed to provide the Investor with the necessary land plots in one of the regions with the highest level of efficiency of insolation and the highest potential for the production of solar energy, based on the analysis provided by the Investor. This article precisely states that the total surface of the land has to be at least 3,000 hectares. On November 22, 2012, Securum Equity Partners provided the parameters for the infrastructural equipment of plots (see: ANNEX_007).
The parameters for the selection of the plots suitable for the construction of solar plants were:
a) Land with scarce vegetation, without any high trees generating shade
b) Flat surface or with a 5 percent of gradient at the most
c) The height of the land should not be over 500 to 600 meters height above sea level
d) Easy access to public roads for the machinery and other facilities
According to Article 3.3.4 of the Umbrella Agreement the Republic of Serbia committed to provide land which is located in the proximity, and under no circumstances, farther than 1 kilometer from a network for electric power transmission. On November 28, 2012 the Republic of Serbia delivered a list of 30,000 hectares of land in South Serbia. In regard to the above, the Republic of Serbia expressed hope that the Investor would have managed to find 3,000 hectares which would be appropriate for the construction of the solar park (see: ANNEX_008). According to the conditions of the agreement, in Article 3.3.3 the Republic of Serbia committed, once the land was identified, to provide the Investor with a lease for a period of at least 60 years, and that not any land plot will ever be owned by the Investor. Based on the preliminary analysis of certain land plots, such as for example in Pirot, the experts of Securum Equity Partners concluded on November 29, 2012 that certain land characteristics were not appropriate (see: ANNEX_009).
On December 20, 2012 Securum Equity Partners gave the final official answer to the Government of Serbia stating that further to the technical evaluation, it was established that the majority of the offered plots, unfortunately, do not correspond to the technical criteria, specified in the Umbrella Agreement, for the construction of the Park. Securum Equity Partners informed also the Government of Serbia that it was of the utmost importance to comply with the contractually agreed deadlines for the construction of the Park, and that the Investor is prepared to take into consideration other locations on the territory of Serbia appropriate for the realization of the project (see: ANNEX_010). On that occasion Securum Equity Partners expressed its interest and wishes to visit land plots located within the open pit mine sites of Kolubara and Kostolac, as suggested by the Ministry of Energy. An official inspection of the sites was arranged by the Republic of Serbia on January 16 and 17, 2013 and on that occasion the director of the Mining Basin of Kolubara Milorad Grcic stated that “initial contact has been established and a serious and long-term cooperation is to be expected” (see: video ANNEX_11 and translation ANNEX_12). Following that, on January 29, 2013 Securum Equity Partners sent an e-mail to the members of the working group, Mr. Dejan Trifunovic, Mr. Ivica Kojic and Mr. Danijel Nikolic, confirming that the company is interested in the land available within the sites of Kolubara and Kostolac and to proceed with the realization of the Onegiga Solar Park (see:ANNEX_013). On 6 February, 2013 in the office of the State Secretary Mr. Ivica Kojic, were identified the following steps in order to realize the solar park on Kolubara’s area (see:ANNEX_014). On February 27, 2013 Securum Equity Partners sent a letter to the Ministry of Energy and Ministry of Finance and Economics referring to the conclusions of the meeting in Kolubara and Kostolac, requesting that the land for the future construction of the solar park is being finally identified (see: ANNEX_015). As of that date, Securum Equity Partners did not receive any answer from the authorized ministries.
The law firm Zivkovic-Samardzic, which represents the interests of OneGiga Solar Park Incubator d.o.o. in Serbia tried to contact the competent officials in the Ministry of Energy in a period from March 4 to 11 but they did not receive any answer. Therefore, the Zivkovic-Samardzic law firm sent an official letter to the Minister of Energy of Serbia, Mrs. Zorana Mihajlovic, stating that the main precondition for the realization of the project had not been achieved, and that no official answer from the Republic of Serbia was produced yet. In the same letter Securum Equity Partners requested the Ministry of Energy to explicit the official stand of the Republic of Serbia regarding the identification of the necessary land plots and the future implementation steps of the agreement (see: ANNEX_16).
Ms. Zorana Mihajlovic (Minister of Energy)
The Minister of Energy Mrs. Zorana Mihajlovic sent a letter on March 25, 2013 to the Zivkovic-Samardzic law firm (see: ANNEX_17) stating that as far as the Kolubara basin and Kostolac, the authorized institutions of the Republic of Serbia did not officially offer any plots in those areas and that the trip to this region was organized for other purposes, namely just as a tourist visit, and that there was no official purpose to identify any land plots from the two open pit mine sites to be suitable for solar parks construction.Minister’s attitude was very surprising especially since the Ministry of Energy is the one which suggested to Securum Equity Partners to consider the above mentioned location as an alternative to the unsuitable 30,000 hectares initially offered. In her answerMrs. Mihajlovic further stated that the Republic of Serbia did not discontinue the process of reaching an agreement with the company in regard to implementing the agreement, respecting its obligations and deadlines. Minister Mihajlovic’s answer clearly demonstrates that the Republic of Serbia still hadn’t provided land which it was obliged to do according to Article 4.1 of the Umbrella Agreement by December 1, 2012.
The Zivkovic-Samardzic law firm sent a letter on April 29, 2013 to the Ministry of Energy and Ministry of Finance and Economics (see: ANNEX_18) in which it commends the good will expressed in Minister Mihajlovic’s answer with a request that the said Ministries should send anew list of 3,000 hectares within 15 days, respecting the given criteria, with the objective to continue with the implementation of the project and the agreement. Securum Equity Partners compiled an expert report and evaluation of 30,000 hectares of land which the Republic of Serbia offered for the construction of the solar park, which unambiguously shows that only the surface of 135.5 hectares – precisely 0.45 percent of offered 30,000 hectares – correspond to the criteria given in the agreement.
Ms. Zorana Mihajlovic (Minister of Energy)
The majority of the offered land is inadequate for the construction of the solar park sincethey are located in zones flooded with water, mountain peaks, national parks, urbanized locations, etc. The conclusions of this report clearly demonstrate that the Republic of Serbia has randomly chosen land parcels which absolutely do not correspond to the parameters defined in the Umbrella Agreement. On May 28, 2013 Securum Equity Partnerssent a letter (see: ANNEX_19) to the Ministries of Energy and Economy kindly requesting cooperation, although it was already six months over the contractually agreed deadline for finding appropriate land for the construction of the solar park. The Minister of Energy, Mrs. Zorana Mihajlovic, sent a letter on June 14, 2013 to Securum Equity Partners (see:ANNEX_20), thanking them for their report which, in her opinion, was excellently compiled, stating that “the Ministry of Energy will give its support in finding land appropriate for the realization of the solar park”. The answer clearly shows that seven months after the deadline fixed in the agreement, the Ministry of Energy was still in search of land for the realization of the OneGiga Project. On June 17, 2013 Securum Equity Partners sent two letters (see: ANNEX_21 and ANNEX_22) to the Minister of Energy, Mrs. Zorana Mihajlovic and to her Advisor, Mr. Dejan Trifunovic, referring to the claims made by Mr. Trifunovic in a statement given to RTS (Serbian Radio Television) that the Ministry of Energy did not receive an answer from Securum Equity Partners, regarding the 30,000 hectares which the Republic of Serbia offered for the realization of the OneGiga Project (which can be absolutely regarded as incorrect after reading the arguments given in this interview).
Mr. Dejan Trifunovic (Minister of Energy’s Advisor)
The Zivkovic-Samardzic law firm and the Baker and McKenzie law firm, which represent Securum Equity Partners in the local and international proceedings, sent letters to the concerned ministries on 8 July, 2013 (see: ANNEX_23 and ANNEX_24). The letters stressed that according to Article 4 of the Umbrella Agreement related to the deadline for carrying out its obligations,the Republic of Serbia undertook to provide land for the realization of the project within December 1, 2012 (Article 4.1). Also, the Republic of Serbia committed to provide a lease for the land by February 1, 2013 (Article 4.2). By April 1, 2013 the Republic of Serbia committed to provide authorizations necessary for the realization of the solar park (Article 4.3). – After almost nine months of delay, the Republic of Serbia managed to provide only 135.5 hectares of land. It is clear that there are no signs of good will and efforts undertaken by the Republic of Serbia for the realization of this project.
As a response to the letters sent by Securum Equity Partners’ lawyers, on 25 July, 2013, Ministry of Finance and Economy sent a letter (see: ANNEX_25) with the intention to explain the position of the Republic of Serbia: the letter is completely irrational and contains only fabricated arguments.
On 5 August, 2013 the law firm Zivkovic-Samardzic, on behalf of One Giga Solar Park Incubator d.o.o., sent the Letter of Termination of the Umbrella Agreement claiming the compensation for damages suffered by the company, as established in the Agreement (see: ANNEX_26).
In the same letter it is also specified that Securum Equity Partners International Ltd keeps the right to claim the compensation for damages suffered due to Republic of Serbia’s failure to comply with its contractual obligations.
On 8 August, 2013 the law firm Baker and McKenzie, on behalf of Securum Equity Partners International Ltd sent a second letter claiming the compensation for damages suffered by the company (see: ANNEX_27).
For the above mentioned, Securum Equity Partners will give mandate to Zivkovic-Samardzicand Baker and McKenzie to represent and assist it against the Republic of Serbia in the International Court of Arbitration in London in the request of compensation of estimated damages for the amount of EUR 160 million.