Russian Court Orders Seizure of Deutsche Bank’s Assets, But Why?

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According to court documents, a Russian court has issued an order to seize Deutsche Bank’s assets, accounts, property, and shares in Russia. This action is part of a lawsuit involving the German bank. The lawsuit was initiated by RusChemAlliance, a joint venture in which Russian gas giant Gazprom owns a 50% stake. Gazprom is the operator of the gas processing plant construction project in Russia, for which Deutsche Bank served as one of the guarantor lenders.

Background on Lawsuit and Contract Termination

The lawsuit stems from the termination of a contract between Deutsche Bank and Germany’s Linde for the construction of a gas processing plant in Russia. The termination was a result of Western sanctions. Deutsche Bank’s involvement in the project made it subject to legal action by RusChemAlliance.

Court’s Decisions and Implications for Deutsche Bank

The St Petersburg arbitration court has made several decisions in relation to the lawsuit. It has prohibited Deutsche Bank from exercising its 100% interest in the authorized capital of its Russian subsidiary, as well as Deutsche Bank Technology Center LLC. Additionally, the court has ordered the seizure of up to 238.6 million euros ($259 million) worth of securities, real estate, and bank accounts belonging to Deutsche Bank, its Russian subsidiary, and Deutsche Bank Technology Center. It is worth noting that Deutsche Bank had already set aside approximately 260 million euros in provisions for this case.

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Deutsche Bank’s Response and Future Implications

Deutsche Bank has issued a statement in response to the court’s decision. The bank expressed the need to observe how the claim will be implemented by the Russian courts and assess the immediate operational impact in Russia. This indicates that the bank is closely monitoring the situation and will evaluate its impact on its operations in the country.

Parallel Lawsuit and Seizure of UniCredit’s Assets

In a related development, the Russian court has also ordered the seizure of UniCredit’s assets, accounts, property, and shares in two subsidiaries as part of a parallel lawsuit. This suggests that multiple financial institutions are facing legal actions related to the same project.

The implications of these court orders and the ongoing legal proceedings will need to be closely monitored in order to understand their full impact on the parties involved and the broader financial landscape.

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