The Supreme Court confirmed Ukrnafta’s right to defend its economic interest in the Svystunkivsko-Chervonolutske gas field in court
The Supreme Court confirmed Ukrnafta’s right to defend its economic interest in the Svystunkivsko-Chervonolutske gas field in court

For 3 years, Ukrnafta has been trying to defend in courts its legal right to conduct business activities at the Chervonolutske field (case no. 826/14653/17 on the claim of Ukrnafta against the Public Service of Geology and Subsoil of Ukraine and Arkona Gaz-Energy LLC) to no avail. The administrative courts of all instances, as per the template, even refused to consider the company's claim. It was, in fact, a refusal to the business to have access to justice in its constitutional right of access to justice.

Mass media closely followed this high-profile case, and Ukrnafta's trade unions and staff actively participated in peaceful protests near the walls of the Supreme Council of Justice aimed at ensuring the company's right to a fair trial. On September 10, 2019, the Supreme Court finally satisfied the company's cassation appeal and ordered the court of first instance to consider the claims on the merits.

At the same time, in another court case initiated by the Prosecutor General's Office of Ukraine, the subject of which was also the law enforcement authorities' claims to the legality of the issuance by the State Geological Survey of the right to industrial production of minerals of the Svystunkivsko-Chervonolutske field of Arkona Gaz-Energy, the Supreme Court expectedly withdrew from the assessment of the arguments of Ukrnafta and the National Anti-Corruption Bureau of Ukraine.

In this case Ukrnafta was only a third party on the side of the Prosecutor General's Office of Ukraine. Taking into account the limited procedural status of the company, its arguments were not considered by the court, and the law enforcement claims were not satisfied. The media expressed reasonable doubts as to whose side the Prosecutor General's Office "plays" and whether the lawsuit of the PGO over Arkona is another giveaway game (https://www.radiosvoboda.org/a/29772180.html) and an imitation of violent activity under the slogans of protecting the interests of the state.

In October 2019, the case of Ukrnafta's lawsuit from the Supreme Court came to the court of first instance. The composition of the court was determined. Thus, in the near future, the District Administrative Court of Kyiv will begin to consider the claims of PJSC "Ukrnafta" against the State Geonadromes and Arkona Gaz- Energy regarding the issuance of a special permit for the use of subsurface resources of the Svystunkivsko-Chervonolutske field.

PJSC "Ukrnafta" assesses the judicial perspective of this case with optimism, because it combines both private and public interest to restore the violated property rights of the state to receive fair monetary compensation for the illegally alienated special permit for subsoil use.