South Korea appeals tribunal ruling ordering $32 million payment to Mason Capital

SEOUL (Reuters) -South Korea has appealed against a ruling by an international arbitration tribunal ordering it to pay $32 million to Mason Capital over a dispute stemming from a 2015 merger of two Samsung affiliates, its justice ministry said on Thursday.

The appeal is based on the legal judgment that the South Korean government was not “officially” party to the case considered by the Netherlands-based Permanent Court of Arbitration (PCA), the justice ministry said in a statement.

Mason Capital, a hedge fund, also did not have legal authority to bring the claim as it did not hold enough shares in Samsung C&T at the time the case was filed, it added.

Mason Capital had claimed $200 million, arguing its investors suffered damage as a result of the South Korean government’s influence over the merger of Samsung C&T and Cheil Industries.

In its ruling in April, the PCA panel ordered the South Korean government to pay about $11 million in fees and interest in addition to the $32 million award.

The PCA case was reviewed under the free trade agreement between South Korea and the United States and the rules of the U.N. Commission on international trade law, according to the April ruling.

(Reporting by Jack Kim; Editing by Himani Sarkar and Jamie Freed)


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