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CH Offshore loses appeal against arbitration award

CH Offshore on Thursday said it has lost an appeal against a first final arbitration award granted to three shipbrokers.

The shipbrokers - Internaves Consorcio Naviero, Martima Altair Petromar and Lamat Offshore Marine - in 2016 brought arbitration proceedings against the mainboard-listed vessel chartering firm for unpaid brokers' commissions and damages amounting to about US$3.7 million.

The arbitration award was granted after an arbitration tribunal held a 2:1 decision in favour of the shipbrokers, and dismissed CH Offshore's counterclaims on Aug 23, 2019.

CH Offshore said then that the final amount due to the shipbrokers would be determined following the service of further submissions to the tribunal.

The company subsequently appealed against the arbitration award.

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Following a hearing on June 16, 2020, the court issued an official judgment on July 1 ruling in favour of the shipbrokers and dismissing the appeal.

CH Offshore on Thursday said it had filed for leave to further appeal this decision.

It added, however, that there was no assurance that it would be granted leave to file the further appeal, or - even if the further appeal was allowed - that such further appeal would be determined in its favour.

CH Offshore is a subsidiary of mainboard-listed oilfield services provider Baker Technology.

Both Baker Technology and CH Offshore said they had, in their annual reports for 2019, stated a provision for a brokers' commission in respect of the award made for the financial year ended Dec 31, 2019.

As the precise amount due to the shipbrokers remains to be determined, both companies are currently not in a position to assess if there may be any further material financial impact for the current financial year, they said.

Shares of CH Offshore were trading at three Singapore cents as at 2.57pm on Thursday, down 0.1 cent or 3.2 per cent. Baker Technology shares last traded on June 29 at S$0.24. (see amendment note)

Amendment note: A previous version of this article listed CH Offshore's share price as 30 Singapore cents. It was in fact three cents.

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