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Malaysia's Petronas will battle attempts to seize assets from Luxembourg

Image: Reuters Berita 24 English - Following the seizure of two of its companies in Luxembourg, the state-owned oil firm of Malaysia, Petron...


Image: Reuters

Berita 24 English - Following the seizure of two of its companies in Luxembourg, the state-owned oil firm of Malaysia, Petronas, declared on Tuesday that it will defend its legal position.

According to earlier reports from the Financial Times, which cited lawyers, the units were taken by the heirs of a deceased sultan, intensifying a $15 billion court fight involving a contract that was signed 144 years ago.

The business reported that court bailiffs in Luxembourg served "Saisie-arret," or a seizure order, on its Petronas Azerbaijan (Shah Deniz) and Petronas South Caucasus divisions on Monday.

The action taken against it, according to Petronas, was "baseless." Additionally, it stated that the units had already sent the profits from the sale of their Azerbaijani assets back home.

The confiscation followed a French arbitration court ruling in February requiring Malaysia to honour a contract the last sultan of Sulu made with a British trading company in 1848 regarding the use of his territory, which is now known as the Malaysian state of Sabah, by paying $14.9 billion to the heirs of the sultan's estate.

Following its separation from Britain, Malaysia took over the arrangement and began giving the heirs an annual token sum.

However, the payments were terminated in 2013, with Malaysia claiming that Sabah belonged to its territory and that no one else had any claim to it.

In March, Malaysian Prime Minister Ismail Sabri Yaakob vowed to appeal the French court's decision and said his country would not consider any rival claim to the state.



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