Odyssey Marine Exploration's First Memorial In NAFTA Case Published

TAMPA, Fla., Jan.
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TAMPA, Fla., Jan. 27, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Odyssey Marine Exploration, Inc. (OMEX) - Get Report, a deep-ocean exploration pioneer engaged in the discovery, development and extraction of deep-ocean minerals, has been notified that the First Memorial filed by Odyssey in September 2020 in its pending North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) case against Mexico has now been published by the International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) and is available on its website at icsidfiles.worldbank.org/icsid/ICSIDBLOBS/OnlineAwards/C8573/DS15772_En.pdf . The Memorial is also available on Odyssey's website at www.odysseymarine.com/nafta .  

The $2.3 billion claim against Mexico under NAFTA relates to the unlawful denial of the environmental permit for subsidiary Exploraciones Oceanicas' (ExO's) offshore phosphate project. The First Memorial filing is supported by documentary evidence and 20 expert reports and witness statements. In summary, this evidence includes:

  • MERITS:  Testimony from independent environmental experts that the environmental impact of ExO's phosphate project is minimal and readily mitigated by measures proposed by ExO.  Witnesses with first-hand knowledge also testified that the denial of environmental approval by Mexico's prior administration was politically motivated and not justified on environmental grounds. Evidence was also submitted demonstrating that Mexico granted environmental permits to similar dredging projects in areas that are considered more environmentally sensitive than ExO's project location.
  • RESOURCE:  An independent certified marine geologist testified as to the size and character of the resource which underpins the value of the claim, commercial viability and strategic importance of the mineral concession.
  • OPERATIONAL VIABILITY:  Engineering experts testified that the project uses established dredging technology that is commonly used in Mexico and around the world.
  • VALUE:  A Phosphate market analyst testified that the project's projected CAPEX and OPEX would make the project one of the lowest cost phosphate rock resources in the world, and damages experts testified the project would be commercially viable and profitable.

"Before investing in Odyssey's registered direct offering last year, we conducted significant due diligence on the company and carefully reviewed this NAFTA claim," explained John Addis, Founder and CIO of FourWorld Capital Management. "This First Memorial amplifies our strong belief in the merits and evidence presented in the case, and we are looking forward to a very positive outcome." FourWorld Capital Management, LLC is an SEC registered, litigation focused hedge fund based in New York. Since its launch in 2015, FourWorld has deployed over $1 billion globally in investments where litigation was the primary driver of value. FourWorld currently owns over 1.2 million shares (9.4%) of Odyssey common stock.

About Odyssey Marine Exploration Odyssey Marine Exploration, Inc. (Nasdaq:OMEX) is engaged in deep-ocean exploration using innovative methods and state-of-the-art technology to provide access to critical resources worldwide. Our core focus is the discovery, development and extraction of deep-ocean minerals. Odyssey also provides marine services for private clients and governments. For additional details, please visit www.odysseymarine.com. Additional background on the ExO phosphate deposit is available at https://ir.odysseymarine.com/news-releases/news-release-details/odyssey-marine-exploration-prepared-strong-2021-increased-nafta

Forward Looking InformationOdyssey Marine Exploration believes the information set forth in this Press Release may include "forward looking statements" within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933 and Section 21E of the Securities Act of 1934. Certain factors that could cause results to differ materially from those projected in the forward-looking statements are set forth in "Risk Factors" in Part I, Item 1A of the Company's Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2019, which was filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission on March 30, 2020. The financial and operating projections as well as estimates of mining assets are based solely on the assumptions developed by Odyssey that it believes are reasonable based upon information available to Odyssey as of the date of this release. All projections and estimates are subject to material uncertainties and should not be viewed as a prediction or an assurance of actual future performance. The validity and accuracy of Odyssey's projections will depend upon unpredictable future events, many of which are beyond Odyssey's control and, accordingly, no assurance can be given that Odyssey's assumptions will prove true or that its projected results will be achieved.

Cautionary Note to U.S. InvestorsThe U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) permits mining companies, in their filings with the SEC, to disclose only those mineral deposits that a company can economically and legally extract or produce. We use certain terms in this press release, such as "measured", "indicated," "inferred" and "resources," which the SEC guidelines strictly prohibit us from including in our filings with the SEC. "Inferred mineral resources" have a great amount of uncertainty as to their existence, and great uncertainty as to their economic and legal feasibility. It cannot be assumed that all or any part of an inferred mineral resource will ever be upgraded to a higher category. U.S. investors are cautioned not to assume that part or all of the inferred mineral resource exists, or is economically or legally mineable, and are urged to consider closely the disclosures in our Form 10-K which may be secured from us or from the SEC's website at http://www.sec.gov/edgar.shtml.

CONTACT:Laura Barton Odyssey Marine Exploration, Inc.(813) 876-1776 x 2562 laura@odysseymarine.com