Vekselberg Sues RusAl Over Contracts Row

Russian billionaire Viktor Vekselberg has filed a suit in a London court against RusAl, the world’s largest aluminum producer, over the company’s decisions related to long-term contracts with trade Glencore, a source close to RusAl’s shareholders told Prime news agency said on Friday.

The suit was filed due to a dispute between RusAl’s shareholders concerning approval of long-term contracts worth over $47 million signed between RusAl and Glencore to supply primary aluminum and alumina, the source said.

“The contracts were signed as a result of … a conspiracy and violation of the veto right which belongs to Sual Partners under the shareholders agreement and it was publicly acknowledged by Mr. Deripaska [RusAl’s core owner],” the source said.

“Sual Partners seek to terminate the contracts’ force, declare them invalid and recover damages,” he added.

RusAl’s contract with Glencore stipulates that the trader will sell 1.4 million tons of aluminum, 30 percent of RusAl’s overall export supplies in 2012. That share may reach 50 percent in the next six years.

Sual’s spokesman Andrei Shtorkh and RusAl declined to comment.

Sual Partners owned by billionaire Leonid Blavatnik and Vekselberg, who has headed RusAl’s board of directors since the company was founded in 2007 but resigned the post this March, holds 15.8 percent stake in RusAl. Glencore owns 8.75 percent in the aluminum giant.

Vekselberg said his resignation was caused by disagreements with a number of recent decisions made by RusAl’s management, particularly over its debts and its handling of its stake in Norilsk Nickel.

RusAl exports 70 percent of its annual production.


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