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29 Nov 2023

Commodities in Focus Weekly: Standing in the way of control – When is a company controlled by a sanctioned Russian entity?

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In the High Court case of Litasco SA -v- (1) Der Mond Oil and Gas Africa Sa (2) Locafrique Holding SA [2023] EWHC 2866 (Comm), Litasco SA (Litasco) was awarded summary judgment against the Senegalese entities Der Mond Oil and Gas Africa Sa (Der Mond) and Locafrique Holding SA (Locafrique) in connection with a breach of contract claim relating to the delivery of 950,000 barrels of Nigerian crude oil.

The case is of interest regarding the scope of UK sanctions in the wake of the Russia-Ukraine war, specifically whether a party, who is not themselves the subject of direct sanctions, is 'controlled' by a party who is the subject to sanctions, and therefore whether a counterparty is prohibited from making payments to such party.

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