The Irish firm, Process and Industrial Developments Ltd (P&ID) that recently got a British Court judgement over a failed gas project against Nigeria has initiated moves to identify the Nigerian assets that can be seized and it may include the country’s oil cargoes.
The firm confirmed the move in a document reportedly sent to industry sources, that it had initiated moves to identify Nigeria’s assets that could be seized in the process of enforcing the decision of an arbitration tribunal which was recently converted to a court judgment.
In the document, the firm hinted at the possibility of Nigeria forfeiting its oil cargoes or naval vessels in a bid to recover the $9 billion.
The representative of P&ID, Mr John Ehiguese cited the Argentinean and Venezuelan experiences as similar cases of assets seizure.
“We cannot confirm specifics. However, the P&ID’s legal team is working diligently to identify and target assets that may be used for enforcement of the tribunal award. There have been many successful enforcement cases against sovereign states in the past.
“In the case against Argentina, creditors detained an Argentine naval vessel; in the case against Venezuela, there was the seizure of state-owned oil cargo. There is a wide range of potential assets.”
Similarly, there is a tendency of Nigeria losing part of its foreign reserves if the country fails to initiate a strong bargaining power.
Nigeria still has time to negotiate with the firm in terms of assets recovery, as the document stated that the onus lies on President Muhammadu Buhari to engage the country’s legal team to quickly admit and demonstrate faith in the ruling.