Lukashenka is ready to sell Baumgertner
12:16, — Politics
The dictator called Uralkali’s management swindlers and the company itself a bankrupt.
The Belarusian ruler considers the extradition of Vladislav Baumgertner possible, “if in the Russian Federation they treat him in accordance with the law”.
“If Russian investigators are interested in the extradition of a Russian citizen, who was detained by us, then I do not see any special obstacles. We are absolutely not holding onto him”, - Lukashenka claimed on Thursday at a meeting on economic and foreign policy issues, Interfax reports.
A deputy Prosecutor General of the Russian Federation was invited to the meeting among others.
“If they do actually treat him in accordance with the law. The damage is colossal there, it can be seen with a naked eye. If they need it, we should not impede that”, - Lukashenka noted. At the same time he emphasized: “Some swindler should not become an obstacle in the relations of two states. It is too much honor to anyone”.
The ruler claimed that “everything possible should be done in order for us to investigate this conflict together with the Russians as well as what stands behind it”. “There is a huge multibillion amount of money behind it that Belarus and Russian lost, some high-ranked swindlers stand behind it in the Russian Federation”, - the dictator said. He also added that “if some swindlers appear in Belarus and the Russians ask to take them to Russia, we will not hold onto the citizens of Belarus and will immediately extradite them”. “The main thing is the truth. If you are guilty, you must be held responsible”, - Lukashenka emphasized.
The dictator claimed that “controllers and investigators should deal with all that”. “You can find the real origins of this whole dark story in Russia”, - Lukashenka noted. In this regard he ordered to pass all the necessary materials, which would become the basis for an audit, including by Russia’s Chamber of Accounts. Apart from that he reminded that the Prosecutor General’s office of the Russian Federation also addressed the Belarusian colleagues requesting the respective information. He ordered Belarus’ Prosecutor General to send the materials. “By no means should we conceal anything”, - Lukashenka stated.
Even more so that it is already clear, according to him: “A much larger damage was caused to Russia than to Belarus”. “The damage, caused to Belarus, should be compensated in full. Everything stolen from us must be returned. Up to the last penny”, - Belarus’ ruler claimed.
Before a meeting with Putin
The potash scandal should affect neither the relations of Belarus and Russia, nor the relations of the presidents of the two countries, Lukashenka believes.
“The potash scandal should become a stumbling block neither for the relations of the states nor of the presidents. You know how difficult it is to restore the relations, we cannot let them get spoiled again”, - the dictator claimed.
Lukashenka emphasized that “those, who hoped to the potash problems to undermine the relations of the two states, severely miscalculated”. “We stood and keep standing on the premise that no swindlers or crooks will be able to drive a wedge in between the two presidents and two peoples”. – he stated.
“They say: what did Lukashenka want to show?! Lukashenka showed one thing: no one is allowed to wipe their feet on us”, - the dictator specified. We are a sovereign independent state, we never create problems to our neighbors and the Russians first of all. But we will not let some separate swindlers whether from the West or the East to wipe their feet on us”, - he stated.
Uralkali is a bankrupt…
Lukashenka claimed that the OJSC Uralkali was a bankrupt and ordered the respective agencies to inform London and Moscow stock exchanges about that. The company’s shares are trade on these stock exchanges.
“There is information that they have $12 billion on the negative side of the balance, and only two on the positive. If this is true, then it turns out that the information they spread around the world was fake. Uralkali is a public company, the shares of which are sold on London and Moscow stock exchanges. Spreading fake accounting reports and information is an international fraud”, - the ruler claimed.
“I ordered the respective agencies to contact London and Moscow stock exchanges, where their shares are sold, in order to warn them about what is actually going on so we do not end up the ones to blame later”, - Lukashenka said.
“Whether they would check it or not – it is their choice. But it seems to me that London stock exchange will be very surprised, having received such information”, - Lukashenka said.
“I turned your attention to London stock exchange, since they will not only demand a report from them, but will also check what is going on at the enterprise. The enterprise is bankrupt, I dare anyone to disprove this statement of mine”, - the dictator noted.
Lukashenka put a question: “Why did they plunge a seemingly successful enterprise into a crisis? They now have had everything failed – the share price, the profits. What was the matter with that?”.
According to him, “the conclusion suggests itself that there were most serious problems behind the outward successfulness of Uralkali’s owners”. “To all appearances, they were able to hide those up to some point by the means of forging financial reports. But in reality they went into debts more and more, took loans. There are lots of problems with Uralkali’s manufacturing: mines flooded, the city is sinking, they have to relocate the people”, - Lukashenka claimed.
In this regard, according to him, “Uralkali’s owners had harder and harder times concealing their problems”. “It seems that these stock exchange wheeler-dealers decided to solve them on the account of Belaruskali, to seize the Belarusian enterprise, increase the capitalization of their assets and solve all the problems at once”, - Lukashenka said. At the same time he reminded that “when we were suggested to sell Belaruskali halfprice, they offered significant bribes”. “We behaved roughly in the situation and refused”, - the ruler said.
Then, according to him, “they crushed the market”. “The goal is the same: to kneel Belaruskali down and buy the shares of Uralkali cheap, increasing their shareholdings. I am speaking of Uralkali’s main owner”, - the dictator claimed.
Lukashenka noted that “the scandal was actually like a some screen for them”. “It was easy to conceal their problems with the market crush in the background. The problems had emerged long before that. May be this actually was the main idea of the swindle. I have no doubts that it is a swindle”, - he claimed.
Lukashenka reminded that in 2005 Belarus met the Russian party half-way, having created a joint dealer with Uralkali. “There was another owner then, and together we achieved huge groundbreaking results”, - he said. In particular, he reminded that in its best years Belaruskali made almost $3.5 billion a year in foreign currency earnings. “Similar to Uralkali, even more, since their sales volumes came from the joint trader (the BPC - Interfax), and the second channel (Uralkali-Trading - Interfax) was even bigger. If we sold 45-47% as of late, then then Uralkali and Uralkali-Trading sold about 53-55%. This means that Uralkali’s profitability was higher”, - the Belarusian dictator noted.
Lukashenka also returned to the story of Uralkali’s sale by its former owner Dmitry Rybolovlev, “from whom this asset was simply taken, and it was sold at insistence of certain people. Let the Russian Federation clarify, how this happened, if they are interested in that”.
Lukashenka emphasized that “Uralkali’s new owners were not going to produce and sell potash fertilizers”. “They wanted to play in the market in some way and get another billion in their pocket”, - the dictator claimed.
… But they are ready to cooperate if Kerimov leaves
Lukashenka claimed that the Belarusian party did not rule out the possibility of resuming the cooperation with Uralkali in the case the owner of the Russian company changes.
“Two options are possible today. First – a civilized division. We are ready for that, if you are ging to leave, then leave, but do not impede us to work here. We are ready to work on our own. Another option is to continue the joint operations. The owners will change, people will come, who are interested in producing potash fertilizers at the Uralkali enterprise, we are ready to work with them”, - he stated.
At the same time the ruler noted that “the restoration of our partnership alone will inevitably increase the prices of this commodity by one and a half-two times in the course of this year – early next year”. “That is why I do not rule out the possibility of cooperating with people, who are interest in the effective operations of the Russian enterprise”, - the dictator claimed.
We would remind that Uralkali’s head Vladislav Baumgertner was detained at Minsk airport on 26 August after a meeting with Belarus’ Prime Minister Mikhail Miasnikovich.
Belarus’ Investigatory Committee charged him with power abuse (part 3 of the article 424 of the Criminal Code of Belarus). The article provides for an imprisonment for up to 10 years and the confiscation of property. After the measure of restraint had been chosen, he was put in the jail of Belarus’ KGB.
We would remind that the Kremlin expects that Russia’s president Vladimir Putin will meet Aliaksandr Lukashenka during the Collective Security Treaty Organization summit in Sochi on 23 September, the president’s press-secretary Dmitry Peskov told journalists.
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