More than 700 people joins ASMAA’s Class Action against oil exploration contracts in Portugal
More than 700 people and two associations, one being an environmental association based in Pombal became part of ASMAA's Class Action against oil contracts in Portugal. The amazing response was a result of an advert published 10 days ago by order of the Administrative and Fiscal Court of Loulé. The outcome is that this Class Action will be considered one of the most publicly supported Class Action to ever take place in Portugal to date.
The advert, which was placed in a national newspaper on Friday 21st September, gave notice to all interested parties that they had an opportunity to officially mandate ASMAA to represent their vested interest in the court action lodged with the court in Loulé against oil exploration contracts.
Sérvulo and Associates and PLMJ, are two of the top blue chip Portuguese legal practices and represent the government and the ENI/GALP consortium in this legal battle. Acting on behalf of their clients and in the defence legal team are some of their most senior partners, including an ex-government minister.
This defence team tried to derail this class action that aims to prove the oil contracts as illegitimate and unconstitutional, but the response of the citizens who in mass supported ASMAA’s legal Class Action, negates all the defence team claims of illegitimacy, and just served to further legitimise it.
The over 700 citizens and the two associations that responded to the call to action by the Loulé Court, represented by ASMAA, will now face the combined opposition of the Portuguese State, the Ministry of Economy, the National Entity for the Energy Sector, the Ministry of the Sea, the Directorate General for Natural Resources, Safety and Maritime Services, the Ministry of Environment, the Directorate General for Energy and Geology and the Portuguese Environment Agency, along with the Galp-ENI consortium.
The public support to ASMAA make this action against oil exploration one of the most participated Class Actions of all times, if not the most popular Class Action ever to take place in Portuguese judicial system.