Jon Hines represents private and state-owned companies in major transactions, including project development, joint ventures, acquisitions and dispositions in Russia and other former Soviet republics. Jon focuses primarily on large-scale oil and gas projects, including liquefied natural gas deals, as well as mining development and other industrial ventures. He advises on such transactions—including related financings—in Russia, Kazakhstan, Turkmenistan, Ukraine, and the other members of the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS), and assists major Russian companies in their projects worldwide.
Jon also 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-Russia’s elected to ICAC’s governing Presidium.
Jon has been based in Moscow for 15 years, and has been involved in Russia/CIS region project work for more than 25 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, German, Danish, and Norwegian.
Oil and Gas
Current 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 (this project anticipated to be done on an asset swap basis, and also being tied to participation in the planned new Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline to Europe).
Current assistance to an Asian state-owned energy company on proposed acquisition of strategic minority stake in a northern Russia oil field.
For Statoil of Norway, assistance on its large E&P venture with Rosneft, encompassing joint development of four offshore Russian blocks in the Sea of Okhotsk and the Barents Sea, onshore shale oil fields in Russia, as well as Norwegian shelf and other upstream assets outside of Russia.
For Gazpromneft, assistance on its proposed E&P venture with Shell, to encompass joint development of two offshore Russian Arctic blocks and other upstream assets outside of Russia; and assistance on another E&P venture in Russia with an Asian national energy company.
Assisting Lundin Petroleum in their planned new venture with Rosneft to develop the Lagansky block in the Russian sector of the Caspian Sea (pending).
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 new Yuzivska and Oleska onshore shale field production sharing agreement (PSA) gas development projects respectively.
A major energy company in its negotiations to acquire a minority stake in the $18 billion+ Yamal LNG project (controlled by Novatek, and with Total and other potential minority investors).
For Bashneft (and its controlling shareholder AFK Sistema), assistance on a joint venture with Lukoil to develop the large Trebs-Titov field complex in the Nenets Autonomous Okrug and market the crude.
Assistance to Statoil (2004-2012) on the proposed $20 billion+ 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, and an LNG plant near Murmansk and shipments to world markets (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.
Assisting a U.S. major on the current proposed sale of a Russian E&P venture jointly owned with Rosneft.
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 a proposed large-scale E&P venture with Rosneft to develop a deepwater Russian Black Sea block (project suspended in 2011 for technical reasons).
For a European energy major, assistance on various aspects of its $4 billion+ farm-in to a strategic minority stake in the Yuzhno-Russkoye gas E&P enterprise in Russia, with Gazprom.
Advising KNOC of Korea with regard to various recent Russia and Kazakhstan upstream ventures.
For Saipem, a global-leader EPC contractor for offshore platforms, pipelines, etc., assistance on its venture with a large state-owned Russian shipyard conglomerate, and on other Russian project matters.
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 shareholder Eni and the former operator Agip KCO, advice on various aspects of development and the recent successful renegotiation of the Kashagan mega oil and gas field complex in Kazakhstan’s Caspian offshore zone, with total investment expected to be over $125 billion; and ongoing work for NCOC, the current multi-company project operator.
For ExxonMobil, assistance on various aspects of the TenghizChevroil mega-field oil development project in Kazakhstan, including the $4.4 billion Stage Two expansion project financing.
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.
Work for the Caspian Pipeline Consortium (CPC), owner-operator of the successfully-operating 1,500 km crude oil line running from northwestern Kazakhstan to the Russian Black Sea coast.
Advice to various oil & gas majors participating in Iraq’s licensing rounds for service contracts.
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.
Intergeo (part of the prominent Onexim Group of Russia) in its (i) successful equity investment into Toronto-listed Etruscan Resources of Canada, which holds various mining assets; and (ii) proposed investment in another publicly-traded Canadian mining company with assets in Africa and Russia.
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 global retailer on its proposed $1 billion-plus acquisition of a large Russian retail chain (all work virtually done; client outbid by a local competitor).
A Scandanavian 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
“JOAs in Russia” chapter in Joint Operating Agreements: Challenges and Concerns from Civil Law Jurisdictions book (Walters Kluwer, 2015)
“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, 1974, B.A., Woodrow Wilson School of Public & International Affairs, and Russian Studies, With Distinction
University of Virginia School of Law, 1978, J.D., With Distinction
Moscow State University, Russia, 1978-1980, exchange scholar at Civil Law Department
Awards and Affiliations
Tier 1 Energy and Natural Resources Lawyer in Russia (2002–2015) and Tier 1 Overseas Energy Lawyer Specialist in Kazakhstan (2006–2015), Chambers Global: The World’s Leading Lawyers
Leading individual Energy and Natural Resources Lawyer in Russia, Legal 500 EMEA (2011–2015)
Global Leader in Energy, Russia in The International Who’s Who of Business Lawyers (2006–2015)
Recommended for Russia in Euromoney’s Energy Expert Guide (2003–2015)
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)
Member of Steering Committee, Association of International Petroleum Negotiators (AIPN), Russia/CIS Chapter