Tag Archives: Ecuador

20 February 2014

Ecuador negotiated oil deal with Chinese bank in spite of commitment to protect Yasuni national park

The Guardian reports that Ecuador pursued a secret 1 billion US dollar deal with a Chinese bank to extract oil from under the Yasuni national park in the Amazon, while at the same time committing to a high-profile project to keep the ITT oil in the ground in exchange for international donations. The government of Ecuador abandoned the Yasuni-ITT Initiative last year, but according to a former ambassador of the initiative, Atossa Soltani, from NGO Amazon Watch, the negotiations with China raise doubts about whether Ecuador was ever truly committed to the plan to protect the Amazon.

An Ecuadorian government document, titled China Development Bank Credit Proposal, clarifies that the oil fields are meant to be explored by two state-run Chinese firms. Ecuador’s president Correa stated that Ecuador abandoned the Yasuni-ITT initiative due to a lack of donations – over 2 million US dollar in the government trust and slightly less than 10 million US dollar in a trust established and administered by the UN Development Programme, in spite of a final target of 3.6 billion US dollar. Others blame Ecuador’s relationship with China and pressure from the country’s oil sector, in which Chinese companies have a near monopoly.

Source: The Guardian | Ecuador pursued China oil deal while pledging to protect Yasuni, papers show

28 January 2013

US identifies 10 countries that conducted fishing in contravention of a regional fishery management agreement

The United States National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) has submitted a Congressionally mandated report identifying ten nations whose fishing vessels engaged in illegal, unreported, and unregulated (IUU) fishing in 2011 or 2012. The 10 states are Colombia, Ecuador, Ghana, Italy, Mexico, Panama, the Republic of Korea, Spain, Tanzania, and Venezuela. All ten nations identified in this year’s report had vessels that did not comply in 2011 and/or 2012 with conservation and management measures required under a regional fishery management organisation to which the US is a party. The report is part of the efforts of the United States to ensure that the US fishing industry is not undermined by unsustainable or illegal activities. The US will soon start consultations with each of the 10 nations to encourage them to take action to address IUU fishing and by-catch by their fishermen.

Source: Merco Press | US NOAA identifies 10 countries that conducted IUU fishing in 2011-12

8 October 2012

Finding of contributory negligence by ICSID Tribunal

On 5 October, the tribunal in Occidental Petroleum Corporation and Occidental Exploration and Production Company v. The Republic of Ecuador, ICSID Case No. ARB/06/11 issues its final award.

The tribunal awarded Occidental about $1.77 billion, having found both expropriation and breach of the duty of fair and equitable treatment.  That sum reflected a 25% reduction on account of contributory negligence by Occidental.

The Tribunal found that “it is not any contribution by the injured party to the damage which it has suffered which will trigger a finding of contributory negligence. The contribution must be material and significant. In this regard, the Tribunal has a wide margin of discretion in apportioning fault.” (para. 670)

Source: Investment Treaty Arbitration | Occidental Petroleum Corporation and Occidental Exploration and Production Company v. The Republic of Ecuador, ICSID Case No. ARB/06/11