The Georgia Oil and Gas Corporation (GOGC) has spent $US77,821 so far in 2018 for lobbying in Washington to “assist in a contract dispute”. At the same time, GOGC is seeking arbitration over its contract with the American-based company Frontera Resources.
Frontera has spent millions of dollars drilling for oil and gas in eastern Georgia for over 20 years. For the past year the company has been claiming more encouraging data for potentially profitable wells.
At the same time, the company has complained that state-owned GOGC now wants to change provisions of Frontera’s license agreements. Frontera confirms that the GOGC has filed a request for arbitration.
Frontera paid $US50,000 in April-June of 2018 to the lobbying firm Cornerstone Government Affairs for work with US congressmen concerning “exploration and production matters in Eastern Europe”. Frontera is only actively drilling in Georgia. It has new lease agreements in Moldova.
US congressmen Steve Russell has introduced a bill that would require the US to determine whether the Georgian government is undermining any commitments or contracts with US citizens doing business in Georgia, and calls for sanctions including visa refusals for current or former Georgian government officials engaged in such activities. The bill is mostly a warning and will probably never be voted upon by the US House of Representatives.
Frontera has said it has not seen a full statement of the GOGC case, and has notified its lawyers.
GOGC refused to comment on its lobbying and the arbitration request.