Oz mining company Kingsgate to pursue ISDS case against Thailand

Tuesday April 2, 2019: Despite winning a political risk insurance payout of US$58.5 million from Zurich Insurance Australia, the Australian mining company Kingsgate Consolidated has decided it will also pursue compensation from the Thai government for the closure of its Chatree gold mine in 2016. It has already notified a dispute under the Investor-State Dispute mechanism in the Thai – Australia Free Trade Agreement.

Kingsgate has not said how much compensation it is seeking, but an executive once said the company could have earned another A$1.3 billion if the mine had continued to operate to 2028.

TAFTA came into force in January 2005. Article 912 Expropriation states:

Toxic mine to re-open after Australian gold miner sues Thai Government

February 15, 2022: Environmental defenders in Thailand have slammed a decision by the Thai Government to reinstate formerly revoked mining licenses following a lengthy legal battle in an international arbitration tribunal, paving the way for Australian mining company Kingsgate Consolidated to begin operations in the Chatree gold mine.

In 2017, Thai Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha had shut down the mining operations of the company’s Thai subsidiary, Akara Resources, after local communities began reporting toxic waste from the mine leaking into groundwater and local paddy fields, causing higher than usual traces of heavy metals in the blood of local residents.

Thailand/Australia Free Trade Agreement

The Thailand/Australia Free Trade Agreement came into effect on January 1st 2005 and covers most trade in goods, services and investment.

In June 2004, AFTINET submitted the following submission to the Joint Standing Committee on Treaties which was examining the Thailand/Australia Free Trade Agreement. The submission outlined AFTINET's concerns about the agreement's impacts on both countries.

AFTINET Submission to JSCOT June 2004.

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