A testament of the potential of the French businessman Sergei Pugachev’s international arbitration claim launch amounting to $12 billion appeared to be the rapidly approved retaliatory bill proposal “On jurisdictional immunity of a foreign state and the property of a foreign state in the Russian Federation.”
The Russian newspaper ‘Novye Vedomosti’ [Translated ‘New Vedomosti’] reported that the prospect of the recovery of $12 billion from the Russian Federation on behalf of Pugachev’s claim award, and interim measures against the Russian Federation expressed in the arrest of the Russian assets in different jurisdictions, noticeably alarmed Russian parliamentarians. The lawmakers hastily approved the new bill proposal which states that the immunity of the foreign country on the territory of the Russian Federation could be restricted if Russia cannot fully exercise equal immunity on the territory of the foreign country in question. In other words, Russia would be able to arrest the assets of foreign countries located within its territory in response to a similar action in respect of its assets.
Notably, the bill proposal was approved just a couple of days after Pugachev filed a claim that is likely to be heard in the Permanent Court of Arbitration in The Hague, demanding to recover compensation from Russia amounting to $12 billion per expropriated assets in real estate development, shipbuilding, and the mining industry. Pugachev also stated: “We have spent a year to prepare these actions. The claim is about to be made in different jurisdictions. This is a standard law practice, and Russia’s assets will be frozen even before the court’s decision.”