Jon Hines represents US, European, Asian, Middle Eastern, and Russian private and state-owned companies in major transactions, including project development, joint ventures, acquisitions and dispositions (M&A) in Russia and other former Soviet republics. Jon focuses primarily on large-scale oil & gas projects, including liquefied natural gas (LNG) deals, as well as mining development and other industrial ventures. He advises on such transactions—including related project financings—in Russia, Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, Turkmenistan, Ukraine, and the other former Soviet Republics, and also assists major Russian companies in their projects worldwide.
Jon further regularly advises clients on the application of the current US and EU sanctions on projects and other commercial dealings relating to Russia. He also has experience in arbitration proceedings related to Russia/CIS transactions in Moscow, Stockholm, London, and Paris. Jon is currently serving his third five-year appointed term on the Panel of Arbitrators of the International Commercial Arbitration Court (ICAC) at the Russian Federation Chamber of Commerce and Industry, and is one of two non-Russians elected to and currently serving on ICAC’s governing Presidium.
Jon has been based in Moscow for 19 years, and has been involved in Russia/CIS region project work for 30 years. Prior to joining Morgan Lewis, Jon was a partner in the energy transactions practice of another international law firm.
He is fluent in Russian and is conversant in French, Danish, and Norwegian.
Oil and Gas
Current assistance to an Asian oil & gas major on proposed acquisition of strategic minority stake in substantial oil and gas field clusters controlled by a leading Russian NOC.
Assistance to a Russian major in a recently completed substantial upstream joint venture project with Mubadala Petroleum of Abu Dhabi and Russia Direct Investment Fund, covering a group of producing fields in Siberia.
Current assistance to an Asian oil & gas major on participation in auction bid process for acquisition of the ExxonMobil and Chevron stakes in the Azeri–Chirag–Gunashli (ACG) oilfield project in Azerbaijan and the related Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan (BTC) pipeline company.
Assistance to OMV of Austria on its proposed large new joint venture with Gazprom and Wintershall to develop deep Achimov horizons of the large Urengoi field in the Yamal-Nenets region of Russia’s far north.
Current assistance to a consortium of India’s five leading NOCs on their pending new strategic minority stake investment into a group of Rosneft’s Vankor cluster licenses.
State Oil Company of Azerbaijan (SOCAR) in the successful negotiation and recent signing with the BP-led consortium of IOCs of an amended and restated ACG offshore fields production sharing agreement and related contracts for this super-giant project in the Azerbaijan sector of the Caspian Sea. There has been over $30 billion in investment by the consortium and over 3 billion barrels of oil produced to date, and the PSA term is now extended to 2050.
For Equinor (formerly Statoil) of Norway, assistance on its large operational E&P venture with Rosneft, encompassing joint development of four offshore Russian blocks in the Sea of Okhotsk and the Barents Sea and onshore oil fields in Russia.
Assisting a leading global oil services company on various upstream ventures and other contractual and disputes matters in Russia and Kazakhstan.
Assisting Lundin Petroleum in their planned venture with Rosneft to develop the Lagansky block in the Russian sector of the Caspian Sea (suspended).
Itera Holdings on establishment of a strategic joint venture with Rosneft to develop gas fields in the Yamalo-Nenets region of the Russian Arctic, and on the subsequent sale of its 49% share in the JV company to Rosneft for $2.9 billion.
Advising Ukrainian state-owned energy company Nadra Ukrayny and two of its affiliates as local partners to Shell and Chevron, tender winners on the major Yuzivska and Oleska onshore shale field production sharing agreement (PSA) gas development projects respectively (project suspended).
A major energy company in its negotiations to acquire a minority stake in the $18 billion-plus Yamal LNG project (controlled by Novatek, and with Total and other potential minority investors).
Assistance to Equinor (formerly Statoil) (2004–2012) on the proposed $20 billion-plus Shtokman First Phase mega-project with Gazprom and Total, planned to encompass development of a Barents Sea gas field (considered to be the world's largest offshore gas field), a 550-km pipeline to shore, an LNG plant near Murmansk and shipments to world markets, and the related overall project financing (project suspended as of late 2012).
For Eni, the $5.8 billion acquisition of a package of substantial Russian (ex-Yukos) oil and gas E&P assets at auction in April 2007, and the follow-on $4.2 billion sale of one of these assets (a 20 percent stake in the Russian oil major Gazpromneft) to Gazprom in 2009.
For ONGC Videsh of India, assistance in its successful negotiations with KazMunayGas for joint development of the Satpaev E&P block in Kazakhstan’s Caspian offshore zone.
For Chevron, assistance on various important matters relating to its Caspian Pipeline Consortium (CPC) and Tengizchevroil (TCO) investment.
For a European energy major, assistance on various aspects of its $4 billion-plus farm-in to a strategic minority stake in the Yuzhno-Russkoye gas E&P enterprise in Russia, with Gazprom; and recent assistance to another European participant in this project on various operational matters.
Advising KNOC of Korea with regard to various recent Russia and Kazakhstan upstream ventures.
Sponsor/operator ExxonMobil on many aspects of the Sakhalin 1 PSA project (1993 to 2006); and assistance first to a Japanese participant, and then to sponsor/operator Shell and the consortium company Sakhalin Energy, on many aspects of the Sakhalin 2 PSA project (1992 to 2010). These two projects, which are already in full development, together involve over $40 billion in investment.
For CNPC of China, negotiation of a PSA for development of large new gas reserves in the Amu Darya Basin onshore Turkmenistan, with planned gas pipeline from there through Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan to China; also assistance on the Skovorodino-Daqing interconnector to China from the pending new Siberia– Far East crude oil trunk pipeline.
For shareholders Eni and ExxonMobil and operators Agip KCO and more recently NCOC, advice on various important aspects of development and operation of the Kashagan mega-oil & gas field complex in Kazakhstan’s Caspian offshore zone, with total investment expected to be over $125 billion.
Assistance to six different international energy companies on proposed (one of them executed) PSA projects for Caspian offshore Turkmenistan sector blocks; and advice on onshore risk service contracts there for two other foreign companies.
For an Asian investment consortium of private and state-owned companies, current assistance on proposed acquisition of majority stake in a Russian gold mining company.
For ArcelorMittal, its successful $720 million acquisition from Severstal (Russia’s largest steel producer) of a package of important coal mining companies in the Krasnoyarsk region of Russia; and various coal mine tender participations in Russia.
Advising BHP Billiton in the formation of a joint venture with Norilsk Nickel regarding Russian mining and production activities and in other matters.
Advising MMK, the major Russian steel producer, on various aspects of its disposition of a stake in a Russian minerals enterprise, and on a variety of other international business matters.
An India-based private investment company in a proposed diamond mining venture in the Perm region of Russia, and on a gold mining project in Kazakhstan.
Uralkali of Russia, the leading potash producer, on various transactional matters and in defense of a US federal court multi-party antitrust action.
A leading Chinese privately owned conglomerate on a pending financing for its real estate holding subsidiary in Russia.
A leading global retailer on its proposed $1 billion-plus acquisition of a large Russian retail chain (essentially all work was done; the client was then outbid by a local competitor).
A Scandinavian manufacturer on a range of sensitive operational matters in Russia.
Aeroflot on its complex finance lease arrangements for 10 new Boeing 737 aircraft (involving the US EximBank and an international commercial bank syndicate), as well as operating leases for some Airbus aircraft.
Recent publications and other activities (author or coauthor)
“Kazakhstan’s New Subsoil Law in Focus,” FSUOGM (Week 48, 5 December 2018)
Russia Chapter, Arbitration 2018, Getting the Deal Through (February 2018)
“Corporate Disputes Under Russia’s Arbitration Reform,” Global Arbitration Review (April 2016)
“Russia’s New Advanced Development Territories Law: Far East Focus,” Russia Beyond the Headlines (November 2015)
“JOAs in Russia” chapter in Joint Operating Agreements: Challenges and Concerns from Civil Law Jurisdictions (Wolters Kluwer, 2015; pending 2019 edition)
“Russia Selectively Liberalizes Gas Export Law for LNG,” Oil & Gas Journal (January 2014)
“Kazakhstan’s New Subsoil User Law: Basic Briefing,” AIPN Advisor (September 2010)
“Foreign Investment Restrictions in Russia’s Strategic Sectors: Focus on Mineral Resources,” AIPN Advisor (May 2008)
“Turkmenistan’s New Petroleum Law: A Primer for Foreign Investors,” AIPN Advisor (November 2008)
Speaker and/or co-chairman at several international conferences – on oil & gas industry and general investment matters – in Russia, Central Asia, Western Europe, U.A.E., Japan, China and India, 1990 to date
Princeton University, B.A., Woodrow Wilson School of Public & International Affairs, and Russian Studies, With Distinction
University of Virginia School of Law, J.D., With Distinction
Moscow State University, Russia, one-year exchange scholar at Civil Law Department
Awards and Affiliations
Band 1, Energy and Natural Resources Lawyer in Russia (2002–2019); Band 1, Overseas Energy Lawyer Specialist in Kazakhstan (2006–2017); the only ranked lawyer for Expertise Based Abroad (Russia)—Kazakhstan (2018); and also noted for work in Azerbaijan, Chambers Global: The World’s Leading Lawyers
Leading Individual, Energy and Natural Resources Lawyer, Russia, The Legal 500 EMEA (2011–2019)
Highly Regarded, IFLR1000 Financial and Corporate Guide (2018, 2019)
Global Leader in Energy, Russia, The International Who’s Who of Business Lawyers (2006–2018)
Recommended for Russia in Euromoney’s Energy Expert Guide (2003–2018)
Recommended for Energy & Natural Resources / Oil & Gas, Best Lawyers in Russia 2019
Member, Board of Directors, American Chamber of Commerce in Russia (2001 to date)
Member, Presidium of the International Commercial Arbitration Court at the Russian Federation Chamber of Commerce and Industry (2013 to date)
Regional Director, Association of International Petroleum Negotiators (AIPN), Russia/CIS/FSU Chapter (2016–2019)