Russia vs Non-Atomic Bulgaria
We knew it was coming.
More than a year ago Moscow warned that if the contract for the construction of Belene nuclear plant is not signed by the set deadline, Bulgaria will be sued and obliged to pay EUR 1 B in damages.
This is the breaking news that Russian media broke on Tuesday, with both sides fully aware of what this step may lead to.
Russia, for whom this project is very important from a political rather than an economic point of view, is very angry as it may have been inclined to agree to yet another delay. For Moscow, it was of crucial importance to build its first nuclear power plant in the European Union, which it then could show to all its clients in Europe.
Bulgaria finds consolation in the fact that it takes a long time before the International Court of Arbitration comes up with a ruling. Under the law, this should take no more than a year, but actually cases drag on for years.
It is still unclear how things will turn out as Russia's claims may prove to be unfounded.
Potentially, however, this could become the most expensive arbitration proceedings in Bulgaria's history.
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