Russia-based group MTS lodged a legal case against the state of Turkmenistan, in a bid to claw back investments lost when it was “forced” to suspend operations in the country in September 2017.
In a statement, the operator said the actions of the Government, its Ministry of Communications, and other state-run organisations had led to it suspending its business.
Previously, it said state-owned Turkmentelekom had blocked access to “international and long-distance zonal communication services and internet access” supplied to MTS.
The operator claims actions by the Turkmenistan state and its associates violated an agreement signed between the country and Russia in 2009, and landed the operator with losses of at least $750 million.
MTS filed the request for arbitration with the World Bank’s International Center for Settlement of Investment Disputes – an independent body set-up to settle such cases.
The company said the legal action followed its failure to come to an amicable resolution with the country having submitted a formal notification six months ago.
Its legal case is the second dispute related to operations in Turkmenistan, after it originally quit the country in 2010 amid a dispute with regulators related to licensing. It re-entered the market in 2012.