Gov't Mulls Special Courts for Oil, Gas Arbitration

Gov't Mulls Special Courts for Oil, Gas ArbitrationGov't Mulls Special Courts for Oil, Gas Arbitration

Special courts could be set up in Iran to deal with oil and gas cases in the near future, Elham Aminzadeh, vice president for legal affairs, told a meeting of oil and gas contactors and advisers on Saturday.

Participants demanded, among other things, the establishment of special courts for oil and gas cases by the government, because of what they called the "unfamiliarity" of public courts with the nature of such cases, IRNA reported.

Referring to a major convention of national energy laws due to be held in October, Aminzadeh said, "One of the achievements of the convention can be drafting a bill to make revisions to oil- and gas-related laws."

She stressed the bill should be "comprehensive," pledging that the government will make changes to oil and gas laws, "if all participants agree upon the need to make amendments" in the coming convention.

The participants also called for establishment of arbitration councils, boosting transparency and paving the way for private companies to compete with state-owned firms in oil and gas projects.

The parties criticized the vagueness of some legal terms with regard to oil and gas laws, which allow for different interpretations.

Ali Bani Hatam, director for legal affairs and contracts at Pars Oil and Gas Company, referred to the conflict between the government and public sector over oil and gas contracts.

"The private sector is trying to defend its rights and the government is trying to defend the rights of people," he said.