25 June 2024, Tuesday, 1:07
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Political Observer: The Kremlin Is Bottlenecking Financial Pipeline For Lukashenka

Political Observer: The Kremlin Is Bottlenecking Financial Pipeline For Lukashenka

Putin received another tool to put pressure on the Belarusian dictator.

The Lukashenka regime is dragging its feet on paying debts on its long-overdue Eurobonds. The Telegram channel “VChK-OGPU”, close to the Russian security forces, wrote that Russian business is lobbying pressure on Lukashenka to return the money.

The topic of Eurobonds could have been raised at a meeting between two dictators in Minsk. Will the Kremlin put pressure on Lukashenka to pay this money?

Charter97.org website talked about this with Belarusian political scientist Anatol Kotau:

— Formally, Eurobonds are a commercial story. Let's start with the fact that Belarusian Eurobonds were bought by Russian companies. Many did this without orders from the Kremlin, since they could make quite good money from it.

Taking into account Belarus’ performance in the international financial market, the yield on the country’s Eurobonds is 1-2% higher than on Eurobonds of other states or commercial companies. It was quite an attractive scheme.

But the main buyers, one way or another, were commercial companies, and sometimes directly affiliated with the Russian state. Simply because they were told that they needed to help Mr. Lukashenka when the lending limits from the Russian budget were directly exhausted.

On the one hand, Eurobonds are a commercial story, and on the other hand, they are a story of salvation, patching up holes in Lukashenka’s budget.

Now I see that the Kremlin does not formally prohibit companies from making efforts to return their money. The first proceedings at the national level have already been carried out, all ended in favor of Russian investors. Only the Belarusian Ministry of Finance does not pay money to anyone.

I think that here the Kremlin will play with Lukashenka, saying that “these are commercial companies.” They have the right to defend their interests. The Russian state does not have the right to prohibit its own large companies from defending their interests.

The debt will be in the nature of a tool with which the Kremlin can put pressure on Lukashenka, but will not be directly related to this. Goodwill can always be that the Kremlin will somehow compensate for losses from its own budget, but this is actually a “carrot” with which Comrade Lukashenka will be lured. The financial pipeline is being bottlenecked.

I repeat, the Kremlin will not prevent its companies from going to the end. This is a beautiful tool, not quite direct pressure on Lukashenka, but very effective. After all, several billion dollars are not lying around on the road.

— Could the case go to the London Arbitration Court, as businessmen are threatening?

— Yes, the Kremlin will not interfere with the matter getting there. The Belarusian regime has no arguments against it. They don't pay money at all. And here the solution is quite obvious. As soon as it is passed, the Kremlin has in its hands an instrument of pressure on Lukashenka.

— If the regime loses this case, will it pay compensation or will property seizures begin?

— There is practically nothing to arrest abroad.

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