Something is going on between the U.S. and Venezuela and it could be big for Rusoro Mining (TSXV: RML).
Here are the facts about Rusoro Mining (TSXV: RML):
On August 17, 2011, after gold hit a new all-time nominal high, Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez announced that he was nationalizing the gold industry to boost the country’s gold reserves. Venezuela stole RML's gold mine similar to how America is stealing the yachts of Russians.
In March 2013, RML filed a Statement of Claim in arbitration against Venezuela, in accordance with the provisions of the Canada-Venezuela Bilateral Investment Treaty. RML was seeking fair-value compensation of US$3.03 billion for all its losses caused by the nationalization of its Venezuelan gold mine.
On August 22, 2016, the Arbitral Tribunal operating under the ICSID Additional Facility Rules, awarded RML compensation of US$967.77 million plus pre and post award interest. As of September 30, 2021, the award with interest is worth in excess of US$1.62 billion.
On October 10, 2016, RML filed a petition with the U.S. District Court in Washington DC to confirm the final award against Venezuela.
On March 1, 2018, the U.S. District Court in Washington DC ruled in RML’s favor, rejecting all of Venezuela’s defenses and holding that the award was valid and enforceable in the United States. The U.S. District Court in Washington DC entered judgment for the full amount of the award, plus interest.
In October 2018, RML announced the signing of a settlement agreement in which Venezuela agreed to pay RML over US$1.28 billion in monthly installments through 2024 in exchange for the full release of the arbitral award and to acquire RML’s mining data.
In December 2018, an initial payment was sent by Venezuela and received by a Canadian bank representing RML. The bank refused to advance the funds to RML due to concerns about U.S. sanctions against Venezuela.
In January 2019, the Paris Court of Appeals annulled part of the damages portion of the arbitral award.
In March 2021, the French Supreme Court overturned the Paris Court of Appeals Decision, therefore reinstating the award in full.
On September 22, 2021, Venezuela voluntarily dismissed its appeal of the US$1.62 billion award judgment rendered by the U.S. District Court in Washington DC in favor of RML.
On October 6, 2021, RML announced that it was granted an additional default judgment in the Supreme Court of the State of New York for US$100 million for breach of the Settlement Agreement dated October 5, 2018.
On March 4, 2022, Judge Leonard Stark of the US District Court in Delaware ruled that plans for an eventual sale of shares in US-based refiner Citgo to pay off debts incurred by Venezuela can proceed despite sanctions, as long as it is approved by the U.S. executive branch. This sale would allow RML to collect the money it is owed but we have no idea if the U.S. executive branch will approve of it.
The very next day on March 5, 2022, U.S. executive branch officials traveled to Caracas, Venezuela for secret meetings with the Venezuelan government.
Last night it was announced that Venezuela released two American Citgo executives Gustavo Cárdenas and Jorge Fernández.
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