Court dismisses application by Petronas to commence proceedings against Sarawak

PUTRAJAYA: The Federal Court has dismissed the application by Petroliam National Berhad (Petronas) to commence proceedings against the Sarawak government pertaining to the regulatory authority over upstream oil and gas activities in Sarawak.

Chief Judge of Malaya Tan Sri Ahmad Maarop said the application by Petronas did not fall within the ambit of Articles 4(4) and 128 of the Federal Constitution, thus the court had no jurisdiction over the matter.

The court awarded RM50,000 in costs.

Immediately after the decision, counsel for Petronas Datuk Malik Imtiaz Sarwar withdrew their application for a stay which will stop Sarawak from enforcing its laws effective July 1.

“This is now academic since the court has no jurisdiction,” he said.

All oil and gas industry players in Sarawak are to be licensed under its OMO and Gas Distribution Ordinance beginning July 1.

Petronas had filed an application for leave to commence proceedings under Article 4 (4) of the Federal Constitution, seeking a declaration that the Petroleum Development Act 1974 (PDA) applied with regard to the regulatory control of upstream activities in Sarawak.

The company is also seeking a declaration that the OMO was repealed by the PDA.

Petronas was seeking a declaration that the PDA was duly enacted by Parliament and stated that Petronas is the exclusive regulatory authority for the upstream industry throughout Malaysia, including in Sarawak.

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