The National Security and Defense Council of Ukraine (NSDC) sabotages the process of confiscation of assets of VEON and Russian oligarch Friedman, according to anti-corruption action center.
Russian Mikhail Fridman was subject to Ukrainian sanctions back in October 2022. However, after almost a year of these sanctions, the Ukrainian authorities have not started the process of confiscating the oligarch's assets, including his stakes in Morshynska and Kyivstar.
In addition, the Ukrainian authorities have not imposed sanctions on foreign companies through which Friedman owns stakes in the most valuable assets. Meanwhile, such companies have been "leaving the Russian market" for a year to avoid further sanctions.
One of these companies is the Dutch Veon Holdings B V. It is owned by Veom Amsterdam B.V., which is owned by Bermuda-based VEON Ltd. which is 47% owned by the Luxembourg-based LetterOne group, co-founded by Mikhail Fridman and his business partner Andrey Kosogov.
VEON Ltd. owns the Russian company VympelCom, which annually pays significant funds to the Russian budget in the form of taxes and fees. This company started providing services on the territory of the temporarily occupied peninsula in 2014. By the way, the company serves its subscribers at Kyivstar Service Centers.
At the same time, according to the NACP portal, Ukraine has not imposed sanctions on either VEON or VimpelCom.
In November 2022, VEON announced its complete withdrawal from the Russian market. This process is still ongoing, but last week the company published a press release on its website promising to complete the sale by October 13, 2023.
So it seems that the NSDC is specifically blocking the imposition of sanctions until this date to allow the company to complete its exit from Russia.
According to our information, a proposal to impose sanctions on these companies has been on the NSDC table for some time. In addition, the AntAC and Automaidan have also sent their request to resolve this issue, but it has not been resolved yet.
This delay blocks the possibility of filing a confiscation claim now, but also creates a real threat of avoiding confiscation in the future.
In fact, the Ukrainian authorities are playing along with Friedman by their inaction. In the second year of the great war, the Ukrainian assets of VEON and Russian oligarch Friedman have not yet been confiscated.
Ukraine Front Lines