South African Court Blocks Zambia’s Plans to Sell Vedanta Mines – by Felix Njini (Bloomberg News – July 23, 2019)

A South African court ordered Zambia to halt plans to liquidate and sell copper mines controlled by Indian billionaire Anil Agarwal pending arbitration in a dispute that’s rattled investors. The Zambian government said it would appeal the ruling.

The Zambian government must immediately cease efforts aimed at winding up Vedanta Resources Ltd.’s Konkola Copper Mines unit, Johannesburg High Court Judge Leicester Adams said.

The court also ruled the state breached its shareholder obligations, and continues to do so. The South African court has no jurisdiction in Zambia and the ruling isn’t enforceable in the nation, Zambian Mines Minister Richard Musukwa said in comments broadcast on Facebook.

“Pending any further determination of the arbitration, the first respondent is interdicted and restrained from taking any further steps in the furtherance and prosecution of winding-up proceedings,” Adams said on Tuesday.

Vedanta had approached the South African court due to an agreement that selected Johannesburg as the seat of arbitration in the event of a dispute.

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