Samsung Heavy Industries Being Dragged into Drillship Lawsuit Again


Samsung Heavy Industries is again being dragged into a drillship lawsuit by Brazilian state-owned oil company Petrobras.

The company announced in a public disclosure on Aug. 12 that the U.S. Court of Appeal has decided to resume the trial on a dismissed compensation claim filed by Petrobras America, a U.S. subsidiary of Petrobras, on the grounds that there is a procedural flaw in the Texas Federal District Court’s dismissal decision.

The Texas Federal District Court dismissed Petrobras America’s lawsuit for damages in June 2020. At the time, the court ruled in favor of Samsung Heavy Industries, which claimed that the statute of limitations related to the lawsuit has expired.

However, Petrobras defied the decision and called for a resumption of the trial. The U.S. Court of Appeal accepted Petrobras’ claim. A Samsung official said that the appeals court judged that there was a procedural defect in the process of the Texas court reaching the conclusion that the statute of limitations has passed. “The appeals court’s judgment has nothing to do with a judgment on the key factual matters of the lawsuit,” he said.

Earlier, Samsung Heavy Industries signed a shipbuilding contract with Pride Global in 2007 and delivered a drillship in 2011. Then, Petrobras signed a five-year lease contract with Pride Global in 2011.

In 2019, Petrobras claimed that it had to pay more lease fees to Pride Global because the brokerage commissions paid to a broker of the deal between Samsung Heavy Industries and Pride Global were misused. Petrobras America filed a suit against Samsung Heavy Industries, claiming US$250 million in damages.

Source: Business Korea