ČEB deputy chairman Michal Bakajsa says the court's ruling has saved the Czech budget up to Kč 500 million
The Vienna International Arbitral Center this week upheld an earlier arbitration ruling in favor of state-owned Czech Export Bank (ČEB). The arbitration center ordered US-based insurance company AIG to pay Kč 48 million to ČEB to cover all the bank’s legal costs and more than Kč 4 million in court fees, ČEB spokesman Jiří Pekárek told Czech Position. The initial arbitration ruling was rendered in September 2010.
The case involving the delivery of trolleybuses from Škoda Ostrov to San Francisco in the 1990s ran for over a year. AIG was seeking $24 million (about Kč 430 million).
“It was an extremely complicated legal battle that could have had an impact upon the state budget of probably around Kč 500 million. The arbitration court accepted our argumentation as the truth and rejected AIG’s claim,” said Michal Bakajsa, deputy chairman of the ČEB who is in charge of the bank’s management. ‘It was an extremely complicated legal battle that could have had an impact upon the state budget of probably around Kč 500 million.’
“The ruling to reimburse all of the bank’s legal costs underscored the great achievement of the whole team of personnel in the bank. I’d like to thank them for the effort than they put into the case,” Bakajsa said. “Of course, thanks and appreciation of professional work is due to the law firm Squire, Sanders & Dempsey which represented us and also to the employees of the EGAP (Export Guarantee and Insurance Corporation) which cooperated closely with our team.”
AIG lodged its claim against ČEB to the Vienna International Arbitral Centre in November 2009 through its legal representatives from the firms Gardere Wynne Sewell and Steptoe & Johnson.