(Adds shares, background)
Jan 10 Australia's Perdaman Chemicals and
Fertilisers sought to widen its legal battle against India's
Lanco Infratech Ltd over a stalled coal-to-urea
project by launching a A$3.5 billion ($3.68 billion) damage
claim against ICICI Bank Ltd, the lender to Lanco's
Griffin Coal unit.
Perdaman filed its application in federal court in Perth,
Australia, on Jan. 2, the company said in an email on Thursday.
Lanco called Perdaman's move a "desperate attempt" and said
ICICI Bank had no contractual relationship with the Australian
company. It said the case has not yet been admitted by the
Perdaman filed a lawsuit against Lanco in 2011 in the
Supreme Court of Western Australia seeking compensation of A$3.5
billion for breach of a coal supply agreement. Lanco termed
Perdaman's claims baseless and said in its statement on Thursday
that it expected the case to be decided in its favour shortly.
Shares of ICICI, India's No.2 lender, fell as much as 1.63
percent in early trade in a flat Mumbai market. They pared
losses to trade down 0.8 percent, at 1,171 rupees at 8:13 GMT.
A Bank of America-Merrill Lynch analyst said in a note to
clients he did not expect the lawsuit to have "any material
impact" on ICICI shares.
ICICI officials declined to comment.
Lanco Infratech acquired Griffin Coal Mining Co in 2011.
($1 = 0.9516 Australian dollars)
(Reporting by Sonali Paul in MELBOURNE and Swati Pandey and
Tony Munroe in MUMBAI; Editing by Matt Driskill)