Tallinn Circuit Court dismissed AS Tallinna Vesi’s appeal in the tariff dispute between AS Tallinna Vesi and Competition Authority

On 26th January 2017, Tallinn Circuit Court dismissed AS Tallinna Vesi’s appeal in the tariff dispute between AS Tallinna Vesi and Competition Authority.

AS Tallinna Vesi has got a right to submit the cassation to the Supreme Court latest by 27th February 2017. The intention to appeal the Tallinn Circuit Court’s ruling of 26th January means that the dispute has not reached the final verdict.

Until the final verdict of the tariff dispute, the interim injunction applied by Estonian Courts against the Competition Authority’s prescription for decreasing the tariffs, remains in force. The claim for damages submitted by the Company against the Competition Authority, has also been suspended until the final verdict has been heard. AS Tallinna Vesi submitted this claim on 2nd May 2014, to avoid the expiry of the monetary claim.

Background of the tariff dispuute:

Since 2011, the Estonian Competition Authority has so far refused to approve AS Tallinna Vesi’s water and sewerage tariff applications. In October 2011, Estonian Competition Authority issued a precept to AS Tallinna Vesi to reduce tariffs. The Estonian Competition Authority has not changed its opinion, irrespective of the fact that the Estonian Courts have previously declared the tariffs’ part of the Services Agreement, which was entered into between AS Tallinna Vesi and the City of Tallinn back in 2001, to be a public law contract. AS Tallinna Vesi’s belief is, that under the Administrative Procedure Act, the state is obliged to comply with a public law contract until amendment or repeal thereof.

By its ruling of 5th June 2015, Tallinn Administrative Court dismissed the company’s complaint (the Court published the reasoning of the ruling on 12th October 2015). AS Tallinna Vesi disagreed with the ruling made by Tallinn Administrative Court, because AS Tallinna Vesi is of the opinion that the Court had incorrectly applied the Law, and had wrongly assessed the submitted evidence.

International Arbitration Proceedings, are running separately and in parallel to the Local Court dispute. The hearings of the International Arbitration were held in November 2016. Other procedural orders and decisions issued during the arbitration proceedings, subject to the redaction of confidential information, are available on the ICSID webpage.

Riina Käi

AS Tallinna Vesi

Chief Financial Officer

Ph: (+372) 62 62 262