Some Ostchem debts to Naftogaz collected via courts – Naftogaz head
Some of the debts owed by the chemical companies of Dmytro Firtash's Ostchem to the structures of national joint-stock company Naftogaz Ukrainy are being collected via the courts, and some have been covered by gas, Naftogaz Ukrainy Board Chairman Andriy Kobolev has said.
"It has happened; the cases on Firtash's group received a push today. Today the Interior Ministry opened criminal proceedings on enforced recovery: we collected a part of the funds in courts, some of the money was taken via gas, and the rest of the funds will result in a criminal proceeding that was opened several days ago. I hope it will help," he said on the Shuster Live show on 112 television.
He said that the major part of the debts for natural gas supplied by Naftogaz’s companies to some chemical enterprises was formed in the last few years.
"The previous authorities accumulated large debts. Two thirds of the sum to cover the deficit of Naftogaz Ukrainy last year [was a result of] the problems of the previous periods. We're gradually returning some of them [to us]. Cases were passed to the Prosecutor General's Office (PGO)," Kobolev said.
As reported, Interior Minister Arsen Avakov said on April 2 that criminal proceedings on the abuse of office by officials of Ostchem Group were launched. He said that actions of officials of Azot, Rivneazot, Stirol Concern and Severodonetsk Azot are believed to have resulted in the embezzlement of over UAH 2.3 billion from the state. Avakov said that the criminal proceedings were launched under Part 5 of Article 191 of the Criminal Code of Ukraine (theft of especially large amounts of money).
He added that the Interior Ministry has submitted the case materials to the PGO.
Ostchem holding has said that the accusations against its managers, which were published by Interior Minister of Ukraine Arsen Avakov on his Facebook page, are groundless.