Slovenia ‘very likely’ to withdraw from Energy Charter Treaty

Euractiv | 26 October 2022

Slovenia ‘very likely’ to withdraw from Energy Charter Treaty

By Sebastijan R. Maček |

Slovenia will follow the lead of countries such as the Netherlands, Spain and France and very likely withdraw from the Energy Charter Treaty, Infrastructure Minister Bojan Kumer announced on Tuesday (25 October).

The Energy Charter Treaty, which since 1998 allows investors to sue governments over policies that jeopardise their investments in more than 50 signatory states, has come into the spotlight as countries like Spain, the Netherlands, France and Belgium either announced their withdrawal or their support for leaving.

In Slovenia, the government has expressed similar sentiments.

Kumer pointed to the treaty no longer serving its initial purpose and to all courts being bypassed when investors sue based on the treaty.

“We have to give a clear signal to the capital that states and citizens have matters in our own hands … and that we cannot bypass the law that is protected by European courts,” he also said.

The country is currently being sued by Ascent Resources, a UK gas exploration company which wanted to develop a gas field in eastern Slovenia.

Ascent Resources is seeking €500 million in damages, claiming that Slovenia has taken measures against fracking that have harmed Ascent’s investment and expected benefits, which are protected under the ECT.

source: Euractiv