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High Court Rules Against SA Fuel Company Addax Energy Demand For USD Payment

A dispute between a South African-based fuel company, Addax Energy SA, and a local mining firm, C&T Mining Private Limited, has reached a conclusion in the High Court, with the ruling favoring the local company.

Addax had sought to compel C&T Mining to settle a debt of US$269,735 for diesel supplied, insisting it be paid in hard currency. However, the High Court dismissed Addax’s application, stating that the debt, being a local obligation, could be settled in local currency at the prevailing exchange rate.

Addax, headquartered in Geneva, Switzerland, specializes in procuring fuel from various countries, including the United Arab Emirates, India, and Russia, to supply the Zimbabwean market. C&T Mining, a local customer, had received diesel worth US$1,379,601 from Addax under an oral agreement requiring payment within 14 days of delivery.

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Despite numerous follow-ups after the stipulated period had elapsed, C&T Mining failed to make any payment, leading Addax to cancel the contract in June 2022 and demand the return of the supplied fuel

The ensuing legal battle saw Addax Energy seeking to recover the outstanding US$269,735 and requesting a court order declaring the debt a foreign obligation payable exclusively in US dollars. However, Justice Chilimbe was unconvinced by Addax’s argument, ruling that the debt did not qualify as a foreign obligation.

Instead, the court ordered C&T Mining to settle the debt in Zimbabwe dollars at the ruling exchange rate at the date of settlement.

Originally, Addax had claimed US$1,379,601 from C&T Mining. However, at the trial’s commencement, Addax abandoned its claim for confiscation of 412,000 liters of petroleum, opting for the remaining balance owed on the fuel supplied.



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