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Cablegate: 2007 Report On Investment Disputes - Rwanda

VZCZCXYZ0018
RR RUEHWEB

DE RUEHLGB #0680 2111512
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 301512Z JUL 07
FM AMEMBASSY KIGALI
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 4459
INFO RUEHNR/AMEMBASSY NAIROBI 0924
RUEHKM/AMEMBASSY KAMPALA 1652

UNCLAS KIGALI 000680

SIPDIS

DEPARTMENT FOR AF/C
DEPARTMENT FOR EB/IFD/OIA
DEPARTMENT FOR L/CID
DEPT OF COMMERCE WASHDC


SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: EINV KIDE OPIC PGOV CACS RW
SUBJECT: 2007 REPORT ON INVESTMENT DISPUTES - RWANDA

REF: STATE 55422

1. SUMMARY. In accordance with reftel, the following updates the
single existing investment dispute involving an American investor in
Rwanda. END SUMMARY.

2. The United States Government is aware of one (1) claim of a
United States person that is outstanding against the Government of
Rwanda (GOR).

a. Claimant A

b. Year the dispute arose: 2002

c. Case History: Claimant A is in dispute with the GOR involving a
fish farming project/investment in Rwanda. Claimant A was in
business from April 1996 until December 2002 at the Kigembe Fish
Farm, when persistent disagreements with the Government of Rwanda
(GOR) over financing and payment arrangements led to an end to
formal company operations. Since 2002, the director of the company
has been in negotiations with the GOR for payment of operational and
income loss from his investment, an amount he now claims totals $15
million. Non-binding arbitration was sought by the GOR, but
Claimant A, after an attempt to seek an out-of-court settlement from
the GOR for an undetermined amount failed, took the case to court on
July 18, 2006.

On August 1, 2006 Judge Karugarama heard the case, but was appointed
to Minister of Justice on August 4 before rendering a decision. The
court scheduled a new court date for January 15, 2007. When the
court finally convened on March 26, 2007, the High Court ruled that
it is "not competent to hear the case" and that the case must
restart in a lower court or appeal to the Supreme Court. The
claimant filed an appeal with the Supreme Court and is supposed to
receive a verdict on August 7, 2007.

On July 24, 2007 the Minister of Finance agreed to the Embassy to
assemble a cross-ministerial team to meet with the claimant in hopes
of reaching an out-of-court settlement. This will be done in
parallel with the judicial proceedings and is an attempt to resolve
the matter once and for all.


MANSFIELD

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