MOSCOW, March 13 - RAPSI. A Canadian court has upheld the Russian Atomredmetzoloto (ARMZ) uranium producer's appeal against an Ontario court's decision validating a notification filed by Khan Resources to inform ARMZ about a statement of claim.
AMRZ is a subsidiary of the Russian State Atomic Energy Corporation.
In August 2010, Khan Resources filed a lawsuit in Ontario, seeking $300 million in damages from AMRZ for breaching fiduciary duties, unlawfully interfering in its economic relations, breaching good faith and damaging its rights, reputation and property.
Under international law, Khan Resources attempted to notify the defendant about the statement of claim through the Russian Justice Ministry. However, the ministry declined to serve the statement of claim to the defendant. The plaintiff then filed a motion with the Ontario Superior Court to validate the notification. In October 2011, the court upheld the motion.
AMRZ successfully challenged the court decision.
The court stated that the plaintiff did not exhaust all possible options to notify the defendant in Russia since it could appeal the Justice Ministry's denial in the Moscow Commercial Court or bring its complaint to the superior authorities.
Khan Resources earlier said it decided not to pursue the available options upon the advice of its counsel in Russia, who said such application was likely to be unsuccessful.
Khan Resources is now studying the court's decision and considering further actions, including possibly filing an appeal, the company reported.
Khan Resources embarked on a joint venture with ARMZ to develop a uranium mining area in Mongolia known as the Dornod fields. Khan Resources had a 58 percent share in the joint venture and ARMZ had a 21 percent share.
However, Khan Resources said ARMZ later sought to deprive Khan Resources of its interest in the fields by entering into another joint venture with the Mongolian government to develop the same land. ARMZ took steps to cancel Khan's mining license, so they could proceed with their new joint venture with the Mongolian government.
In November 2009, ARMZ commenced an ultimately unsuccessful hostile takeover bid for Khan Resources, which was rejected by the Canadian company.
Khan Resources also filed a lawsuit against the Mongolian government with an international arbitration court in January 2011. Khan Resources said the international arbitration court is expected to consider whether the case falls within its jurisdiction in May 2012, after which the lawsuit is expected to be considered on its merits.
Founded in 1991, ARMZ is one of the world's uranium mining industry leaders. It is among the top five uranium mining companies by uranium output. ARMZ operates all the uranium production assets in Russia and runs several projects in Kazakhstan.