Energy and natural resources in Romania
Tuca Zbârcea & Asociatii provides a comprehensive service to its energy clients which rank among the largest in Romania's power and hydrocarbons market. As well as corporate and regulatory support, major infrastructure projects are a key area of expertise, including landmark nuclear power developments. Sorin Vlădescu has an excellent reputation in the market, and is backed up by a deep bench of talent, including partners Cornel Popa, Irina Moinescu and Cristian Radu. Managing associate Nisa Jecu is also noted.
Sorin Vlădescu; Cornel Popa; Irina Moinescu; Cristian Radu
‘This firm’s expertise as regards energy is outstanding. We have been working with them since 2006 and they helped us tremendously. The team comprises seasoned lawyers, hands-on, talented, readily available to work on short notice and observe tight deadlines. Their knowledge of the regulatory environment and capacity to liaise with local regulators are also a plus. They understand both business and legal issues coupled with a strong sense and understanding of the Romanian power sector’s dynamics.’
‘They do not cease to impress, they are always alert, well-connected with Romanian governmental authorities and up to date with key regulatory developments at local and European level. To me, Tuca team’s depth and breadth of knowledge and expertise is singular in the market.’
‘Sorin Vladescu is smart, reliable, focused, concise and provides professional advice, a brilliant negotiator with significant market knowledge. Irina Moinescu is hardworking, prompt, friendly, receptive to questions and inquiries and provides clear explanations.’
‘Nisa Jecu is a lawyer to watch, hardworking and very analytical. She knows the legislation inside out.’
CEZ group of companies
China General Nuclear Power Corporation
European Bank for Reconstruction and Development – EBRD
Marubeni Corporation Japan
The State Oil Company of Azerbaijan Republic (SOCAR)
Vast Resources PLC/African Consolidated Resources SRL
- Advising China General Nuclear Power Corporation on its €7.2bn development of units three and four of the Cernavoda Nuclear Power Plant.
- Acting for Eurotransgaz on the development of a pipeline to connect Romania’s gas transmission system with Moldova’s gas transmission system.
- Advising the CEZ group on all of its renewable, generation and distribution activities in Romania, including wind farm investments of over €1bn.
CMS' dedicated team, which is led by well-regarded energy specialist Varinia Radu, who has almost 20 years' experience advising on transactional, infrastructure and regulatory issues. The team is especially strong on the oil and gas front and clients benefit from its close integration with the firm's wider international network. It is a popular choice for public and private sector clients.
Romania’s Ministry of Energy
Mazarine Energy Romania
Gas Plus Dacia
Pewete EVO Europe
Romanian Petroleum Exploration and Production Association
Fora Oil and Gas
Uniper Global Commodities
- Working on a study commissioned by the Ministry of Energy to propose a new incentive scheme for investments in clean technologies, including the use of ‘Contracts for Difference’.
- Advising Mazarine Energy on its Romanian activities, including a business transfer agreement with OMV Petrom for the acquisition of nine petroleum production fields.
- Assisting Gas Plus Dacia with the divestment of a quota of its interest in a Black Sea offshore petroleum concession.
Filip & Company's highly regarded team is praised for its 'broad exposure across both the public and private sectors'. The practice is regularly instructed by domestic and international energy companies and banks on the full range of energy-related regulatory, corporate and infrastructure issues. Alina Stancu Birsan leads the team, which also includes hugely experienced founding partner Cristina Filip.
Alina Stancu Birsan
‘Alina Stancu Birsan has vast skills across a variety of situations, including nuclear financing and energy M&A‘.
‘The team is very proactive and competent. They inform clients on ongoing topics that might be of interest for their business.’
‘The team has broad exposure across both the public and private sectors.‘
Amec Foster Wheeler
RCS & RDS
RWE Supply & Trading
Energy Gas Provider
WIEE Romania (Gazprom subsidiary)
Portland Trust Developments Two
Societatea Nationala Nuclearelectrica
Energy Trade Activ
- Advising a private equity fund on the potential acquisition of a leading Romanian oil and gas distribution company.
- Assisting a Middle Eastern investor with its acquisition of a European renewable energy business, including a 45MW wind plant in Romania.
- Assisting LafargeHolcim with its acquisition of the Romanian concrete producer Somaco, which also owns various rock and sand mining licences.
Nestor Nestor Diculescu Kingston Petersen has a highly focused team with strong specialisms in renewable energy, power, mining, and upstream and downstream oil and gas. Recent work includes several high-profile litigations, including a major dispute in the mining sector. On the non-contentious side, the group regularly handles M&A, privatisations, greenfield and brownfield developments, and licensing and permit issues. Gabriela Cacerea is experienced in power, renewables and downstream natural gas, Adina Chilim-Dumitriu also covers downstream natural gas, while the highly rated Ruxandra Bologa advises on renewables, mining, and all aspects of the oil and gas industry.
Gabriela Cacerea; Ruxandra Bologa; Adina Chilim-Dumitriu
‘On natural resources, the firm has a well-respected and experienced team.’
‘Ruxandra Bologa was always able to provide us with the highest level of professional advice on aspects related to the natural resources sector’.
Wuxi Suntech Power Co. Ltd.
OMV Petrom SA
- Representing OMV Petrom in a dispute involving all of Romania’s gas producers for the recovery of damages caused to Romgaz following an alleged breach of its obligations to suppliers.
- Assisting Wuxi Suntech Power with the financing and development of a solar power project.
- Assisting Trafigura Trading with a newly introduced annual contribution to be paid to the National Regulatory Authority for Energy.
RTPR | Radu Taracila Padurari Retevoescu SCA has an impressive multi-disciplinary team with expertise that cuts across the sector. The team is very active on the power side, both for domestic and international suppliers. Clients also benefit from access to the firm's cross-border network of lawyers who can add weight to the most complex issues. The well-regarded Victor Pădurari leads the team, which also includes corporate finance partner Mihai Ristici and senior associate Bogdan Cordoş.
‘A dedicated and professional team. Victor Padurari and Cosmin Tilea are very energetic, friendly and professional lawyers.’
- Advising the national eletricity distrubutor, Electrica on the reorganisation of its business, involving detailed regulatory, financing, corporate, employment, real estate and transactional work.
- Successfully representing Electrica as co-counsel in an €800m litigation against Sape, the Romanian body that manages the state’s energy portfolio, concerning alleged breaches of post-privatisation monitoring obligations.
- Assisting China Huadian Engineering with its joint venture with Complexul Energetic Oltenia for the €800m construction and operation of a 600MW power plant.
The highly rated Claudiu Munteanu-Jipescu leads the team at Dentons. The practice is fully integrated within the firm's market-leading global energy group, making it a popular choice for multinational oil and gas and renewables clients. The team's expertise encompasses regulatory, transactional and infrastructure matters, including negotiations with public authorities and state bodies.
‘A team of professionals that can provide practical, client tailored solutions. They are commercially oriented and are not providing only academic solutions that cannot be practically applied. The team is dedicated and is putting in a lot of work to keep the client happy, even if the allocated budget is exceeded, which not many lawyers do.’
‘They are looking for practical solutions and don’t hesitate to help even when asked to undertake work that was exceeding the original mandate. In our electricity production sector, it is really important to have the support of a flexible team, that is not refusing work because not pre-agreed.’
‘Claudiu Munteanu-Jipescu is recognized for his industry knowledge. He is proactive, always taking the time and interest to understand our business and priorities. He explains his advice well and has been always of help. He has, on numerous occasions, gone the extra mile to find the best practical solutions to all matters presented.’
ENEL Energie Muntenia
Romanian Wind Energy Association
C&R Mineral Recycling
CEE Equity Partners
- Advising wind power company Monsson Alma on the sale of a 51% stake in the company to PLC S.p.A Italy.
- Assisting C&R Mineral Recycling with a concession agreement with the local authorities for extracting a dolomite stockpile from public land.
- Advising the Romanian Wind Energy Association on potential improvements to the Romanian Renewable Energy Sources legislation.
DLA Piper Dinu SCA has a versatile practice jointly led by managing partner Marian Dinu and the highly rated Paula Corban-Pelin. The team acts for a mix of energy companies and investors on a wide range of regulatory, infrastructure and corporate issues. Recently, the team has been involved in several significant solar power projects.
Marian Dinu; Paula Corban-Pelin
‘The lawyers understand the business very well, and are business-minded and dynamic, always focused on finding a solution during a transaction or a project.‘
‘Paula Corban-Pelin is a brilliant and passionate lawyer with an impressive legal knowledge and a focused commercial approach. She understands the business and she is quick to see the big picture and anticipate potential risks and offers highly efficient, punctual advice but very comprehensive.‘
CDI Oilfield Services
Freepoint Commodities Europe
Global Green Energy
Neue Energien Auslandsbeteiligungsgesellschaft
PNE Wind Romania Energy
Synergy Energy Holdings
- Advising PNE Wind Romania Energy Holding on a 120MW worth of wind farm projects across several locations in Romania.
- Assisting Neue Energien Auslandsbeteiligungsgesellschaft with a joint venture with a local partner to develop solar projects in Romania.
- Advising Freepoint Commodities Europe on the legal consequences of a hard Brexit on its trading-related power, gas and emission allowances.
Razvan Stoicescu and Iulian Popescu jointly lead the team at Musat & Asociatii, which is experienced in contentious and non-contentious energy and mining-related issues. The firm has a good track record for regulatory and compliance advice, and has recently been involved in a major infrastructure project in the oil and gas sector.
Julian Popescu; Razvan Stoicescu
Solar Turbines Europe
BN Solar Park/GES-Green Energy Specialists
ENGIE Energy Management
Wellbore Integrity Soluctions
Ben Ari Negev Industrial
CCC Tianjin Dredging
- Advising Solar Turbines Europe on the implementation of the Moldova Project, involving the development of a natural gas pipeline between Romania and Moldova.
- Assisting Formin with a new mining project to search for therapeutic sapropelic mud.
- Acting for two Romanian renewable energy companies, BN Solar Park and GES-Green Energy Specialists, in a dispute concerning Renovatio Trading’s termination of their long-term green certificates for sale-purchase agreements.
Popovici Nitu Stoica & Asociatii's energy clients benefit from the expertise of several of the firm's key partners. Senior partner Ernest-Virgil Popovici has notable experience of renewable and nuclear energy, particularly on the projects side. Practice co-head Vlad Neacșu is also noted for his transactional and projects experience, while litigation head Ciprian Donțu is sought after for related disputes.
Ernest-Virgil Popovici; Vlad Neacsu
The Bucharest arm of Schoenherr si Asociatii SCA works closely with the firm's Vienna headquarters to provide a multi-faceted regional service to its energy clients. The team is led by Monica Cojocaru in Bucharest, and represents major clients in the oil and gas sector, such as several OMV Petrom subsidiaries, and electricity suppliers. High-value administrative disputes have featured prominently in its workload recently, though the firm is also strong in M&A and project financings, where it also represents the lenders. The team also has experience of mining and wastewater treatment projects.
Member companies of Alpiq Group
European Bank for Reconstruction and Development
Member companies of OMV Group
PATRES – the Renewable Energy Producers Organisation in Romania
- Successfully representing Electrica, as co-counsel, in an €800m dispute with Sape over alleged failure to fullfil post-privatisation obligations.
- Representing the electricity trader, Alpiq Energy, in a €175m tax litigation with the Romanian authorities concerning payments and penalties due between 2010 and 2014.
- Acting for Alpiq in an ICSID case against the Romanian state over the illegal termination of long-term supply contracts.
Suciu Popa is well known for its strong niche representing clients in the energy sector. This includes high-end corporate and project finance support, as well as advice on regulatory and environmental issues. In recent years, the firm has also represented energy clients in several significant arbitration and litigation proeedings. Managing partners Miruna Suciu and Luminita Popa are very well regarded, and Cleopatra Leahu is considered a leader in the field.
Miruna Suciu; Luminita Popa
‘The team has a sound grasp of the Romanian oil & gas sector. They are able to advise across the piece, including the finance, corporate and regulatory aspects.’
Black Sea Oil & Gas
Enel Investment Holding
Helix Oilfield Services
Romanian Commodities Exchange (Bursa Romana de Marfuri SA)
E-Distributie Muntenia, E-Distributie Banat and E-Distributie Dobrogea
Enel Green Power
Hunt Oil Company of Romania
- Advising KazMunaiGas International on its creation, together with the Romanian state, of the Kazakh-Romanian Investment Fund, which will invest over $1bn into the country’s energy and infrastructure sectors.
- Acting for Black Sea Oil & Gas on the negotiation of a long-term gas sales agreement and an agency agreement with Engie, connected to the Midia Gas Development Project.
- Acting for Rompetrol Rafinare on various environmental compliance issues linked to the Vega Refinery in Ploiesti.
Volciuc-Ionescu has a strong focus on the energy and natural resources market and acts for a wide-ranging client base, which include major lenders, power suppliers, and oil and gas companies. Ramona Volciuc-Ionescu's team is particularly noted for its expertise in major project financing, acquisitions, disputes, regulatory and day-to-day matters. Co-head of the real estate team, Catalin Dinu, is also noted.
‘Highly skilled in the field of energy, with a particular mention for their expertise with regards to renewables. They are a young team, dedicated and professional, client-oriented, and committed to delivering timely and high quality informative advice to the customers.’
‘The team is very qualified on this area and have a deep knowledge of the realities in energy industry (both national and international). ‘
‘Ramona Volciuc-Ionescu and Sabin Volciuc-Ionescu stand out by providing pragmatic, business-oriented advice, while ensuring that all relevant risks are considered and mitigated. Ramona is by far one of the best advisors I have worked with in the field of energy, standing out through her proactive approach, professionalism and customer orientation.
‘Catalin Dinu stands out. Albeit young, he is dedicated, a fast learner, and goes the extra mile to meet the deadlines and ensure customer satisfaction. I believe he has true potential to develop and grow going further.’
Prospex Oil & Gas
Banca Comerciala Romana
OMV Gas Marketing & Trading
Sinohydro Holding (Hong Kong)
- Advised Mercuria on an off-take and financing arrangement, with Vast Resources, for the supply of copper and zinc concentrate.
- Assisting UniCredit Bank with a €38.8m pre- and post-delivery facility to Tsakos Energy Navigation to finance the construction of an oil tanker at the Daewoo Shipyard in Mangalia.
- Acted for Prospex Oil & Gas on its acquisition of a petroleum block in Romania from Raffles Energy.
Bohalteanu şi Asociaţii
The practice at Bohalteanu şi Asociaţii has solid expertise in oil and gas, renewables and nuclear power. The firm acts for numerous domestic and international companies, including investors, electricity producers, and banks on a broad range of related contentious and non-contentious issues. Ionut Bohalteanu is the main contact.
Bondoc si Asociatii SCA has a multidisciplinary practice that advises on corporate, infrastructure and regulatory issues. The team has strong experience in the renewables and gas distribution sectors. Monica Iancu and Cosmin Stavaru lead the team, which includes the highly regarded Bogdan Bunrau.
Monica Iancu; Cosmin Stavaru
‘The firm has good experience in the natural resources sector and we are very pleased with the services provided by this firm as they were very professional in counselling us.’
‘Bogdan Bunrau is a highly qualified person – very serious and reliable‘.
Distrigaz Sud Retele
Euro Sun Mining
- Advised Clariant on the development and operation of a biomass-fired combined heat and power plant, which will deliver electricity and steam to a cellulosic ethanol plant.
- Assisting Engie Romania with its proposed acquisition from Gazprom of a controlling stake in the natural gas distributor, Wirom.
- Advising Distrigaz Sud Retele, the gas distribution branch of Engie Romania, on issues linked to the insolvency of state-owned Elcen, the main thermal energy provider in Bucharest.
bpv Grigorescu Stefanica has a cross-practice service, with a good handle on the major contentious and non-contentious issues affecting the power and oil and gas markets. Anca Albulescu and Daniel Stefanica are two of the main contacts.
Daniel Stefanica; Anca Albulescu
Wienerberger – Sisteme de Caramizi
- Acting for Bepco, a thermal energy co-generation company, in a €3.6m contractual dispute with a publicly held company over its failure to make payments.
- Acting for KDF Energy, a renewable energy company, in a range of contentious and non-contentious issues linked to the development of a biomass power plant.
- Advised Habau on its participation in a tender procedure related to Romania’s national natural gas transmission system.
Buzescu Ca acts for several major energy trading and oil and gas servicing companies. The firm's lawyers have a strong handle on regulatory and compliance issues, and are also recommended for corporate ventures and infrastructure development projects. Peter Buzescu leads the team, which includes experienced senior associate Corina Papuzu.
‘This practice is extremely reliable and professional. The high standard of the work provided is very much appreciated.’
‘They provided swift detailed advice that allowed our clients to make an informed decision about their next course of action.’
‘Corina Papuzu provides information in a timely manner with a very good level of details. She is reliable and both proactive and reactive.’
EDF Trading (Electricite de France subsidiary)
Gazprom Marketing & Trading
Viking Oilfield Services
MND Drilling & Services
Central European Drilling
ICBC Standard Bank
- Advising EDF Trading on day-to-day corporate, compliance, trading and regulatory matters, including the validity of an electricity trading licence held by a UK company in a post-Brexit environment.
- Assisting Gazprom Marketing & Trading with electricity trading and regulatory matters, including the termination of its contracts with Transalectrica.
- Assisting Schlumberger with a joint venture project geared towards combining industrial automation and information with existing oilfield reservoir technology.
Formed in 2017, energy and natural resources boutique, Ijdelea Mihailescu is continuing to make a strong impression on the market. The firm is particularly notable for advising on major offshore oil and gas projects, and also has strong experience acting for clients in the mining sector. Key names Oana Ijdelea and Anca Mihăilescu have considerable experience of compliance and regulatory issues, as well as corporate acquisitions and development projects.
Oana Ijdelea; Anca Mihăilescu
‘They are an extremely hard-working and professional team. Although not a big firm they handle admirably and with ease large deals covering a multitude of issues and disciplines. The lawyers are nice, easy to communicate with and get involved all the way in the business.‘
‘Anca Mihailescu is strikingly sharp and focused and her legal knowledge is impressive. She always seems to figure the right solution to the questions not yet asked.‘
‘Oana Ijdelea is unique, she understands the technicalities and translates them in legal language. As compared with other lawyers who give very scholarly advice but shy away from helping with implementation, her advice can be applied and renders the expected results.‘
Black Sea Oil & Gas
East West Petroleum
Petro Ventures Europe
- Assisting Black Sea Oil & Gas with all of regulatory, construction and licensing issues for its offshore Midia Gas Development Project.
- Advising Galane Gold on the acquisition of several mining projects in Romania.
- Assisting East West Petroleum Corp with a farm-out agreement relating to its 15% participation interest in four petroleum concession agreements over four petroleum blocks.
Kinstellar is a strong choice for transactional and regulatory advice, and the team has a strong focus on EU energy law, environmental issues, and energy-related disputes. Clients are able to benefit from the firm's strong regional network. Iustinian Captariu leads the well-regarded team.
China Three Gorges
- Advising China Three Gorges on the Romanian aspects of its ultimately abandoned €9.1bn bid to acquire Portuguese utility company, EDP.
- Acting for Mavir on complex power trading issues linked to the insolvency of Arelco Power and Transenergo.
- Assisting DXT Commodities with a range of regulatory matters linked to its trading in Romania’s natural gas sector.
Leroy si Asociatii has a good track record advising clients active in the natural gas market. The firm has been involved in several significant claims against the regulators regarding the system of gas pricing and tariffs. Bruno Leroy has a strong following among international energy companies.
CIGA Energy SA
ENGIE Romania S.A. (member of Engie Group)
WIROM Gas S.A.
Distrigaz Sud Retele SRL (member of ENGIE Group)
- Assisting Ciga Energy with an analysis of Romania’s legal regime, including offences and penalties within its electricity and natural gas laws.
- Representing Engie Romania in legal proceedings against the Romanian Energy Regulatory Authority, concerning changes to the pricing for natural gas supplies.
- Representing Wirom Gas, a subsidiary of Gazprom, in a damages claim against the Romanian Energy Regulatory Authority concerning the setting of gas prices and natural gas tariffs.
POP & PARTNERS
POP & PARTNERS is particularly sought after by several major international energy companies investing in Romania, and the firm has developed a strong niche representing a growing number of Chinese energy investors. Claudiu Pop has a long track record advising on related issues, including transactional, projects, regulatory, and disputes.
China General Nuclear Power Group
China New Era Group Corporation
Energie Burgenland Green Power
- Advising China General Nuclear Power Group on elements of its deal to develop, finance and operate units three and four of the Cernavoda Nuclear Power Plant.
- Acting got China New Era Group Corporation on the development of a 30MW wind farm in Romania.
- Representing a major international oil and gas company in a dispute with the National Energy Regulatory Agency.
Wolf Theiss has a long track record handling energy-related matters, acting for energy companies, investment funds, and banks on their related investments. The team, which is led by Bryan Jardine and Flaviu Nanu, also has good experience of contentious matters. Ciprian Glodeanu left to set up his own practice.
Bryan Jardine; Flaviu Nanu
Ingka Investments (part of IKEA group)
Lukoil Europe Holdings BV, LAND POWER SA
Energreen Investment Europe S.A.
European Investment Bank
GE International Wilmington Sucursala Romania
GE JENBACHER GMBH
Global Construct Solar Park S.R.L.
Mazarine Energy Romania SRL
Smart Breeze SRL
- Advised European Investment Bank on a €150m loan to Societatea Națională de Transport Gaze Naturale to finance the construction of the Romanian section of the BRUA gas transmission corridor.
- Assisting Ingka Investments with the multimillion-euro acquisition of an 80% stake in seven portfolio companies holding 171MW in wind farms.
- Acting for Energreen Investment Europe and its Romanian subsidiaries in the enforcement of a €32m third-party claim against the client.