25 February 2021, Thursday, 4:36
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Is History Repeating Itself?

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Is History Repeating Itself?
Leonid Nevzlin

No matter how many years have passed, the methods are still the same.

Putin, answering a question about the owners of Baikalfinancegroup, December 2004: "The shareholders of this company are exclusively individuals who have been doing business in the energy sector for many years." Peskov, answering the question about the owner of the palace in Gelendzhik, January 2021: "Indeed, this is a large object, it is well known in Gelendzhik, and one or more (entrepreneurs) directly or indirectly own this object. But, you must agree that, probably, the Kremlin has no right to divulge these owners' names, and we are not going to do this; it would simply be wrong."

Baikalfinancegroup, if anyone does not remember, was registered in Tver and bought at an "auction" the main production asset of YUKOS - Yuganskneftegaz. The journalists established that people associated with Surgutneftegaz were behind it. And, literally, a few days after the purchase of Yugansk, Baikalfinancegroup ended up with Rosneft.

Two years later, Putin himself even explained the scheme: "With regard to Baikalfinancegroup, everything is very simple. The issue was resolved not in the administrative plane, not in the repressive plane, but in the legal one. And the future owners had to think about how they would work; how, possibly, they will respond to claims that may be brought against them in courts. And when Baikalfinancegroup bought the corresponding package, it became the owner. Everything that happened next happened in the secondary market. Thus, claims against those who later acquired this property were practically reduced to zero." But why Surgutneftegaz participated in this deal and who actually controls its cash flows, there is still no answer.

Now again. Amazing unknown entrepreneurs, whose names Peskov is not ready to disclose and above whose palace there is an official no-fly zone. Is history repeating itself?

Leonid Nevzlin, Facebook