Ukraine seizes Gazprom`s assets for anti-trust agency`s fines

Ukraine`s Justice Ministry has sent a notification to Russia`s gas monopoly Gazprom about the seizure of shares of its subsidiary, Gaztransit, as part of court enforcement action to recover almost UAH 190 billion, or US$7.2 billion from Gazprom in a fine charged by the Anti-Monopoly Committee of Ukraine (AMCU), according to Gazprom`s quarterly report.

”On May 12, 2017, PJSC Gazprom received through its representation in Kyiv a resolution of the Ukrainian Justice Ministry`s Department of the State Executive Service on the opening of an enforcement proceeding related to UAH 189.125 billion … and seizure of shares of JSC Gaztransit,” the report said.

Moreover, the recent investment of Gazprom into its subsidiary in the amount of RUB 232 million, or $4.01 million, is also frozen.

As UNIAN reported, the Higher Economic Court of Ukraine rejected Gazprom`s appeals against an AMCU decision to recover UAH 171.932 billion from Russia`s gas monopoly.

In January 2016, the AMCU billed Gazprom with a fine of about UAH 86 billion (some $3.3 billion) for abusing monopoly position in the domestic gas transit market. The decision was made as part of the execution of the government`s instruction, as well as in the light of the official accusations of the European Commission put forward against Gazprom in connection with its dominant position in the markets of Central and Eastern Europe, which violates EU antitrust laws.

On April 12, 2016, Gazprom decided to challenge this decision by filing a lawsuit with the Kyiv Economic Court. However, the court rejected the claim.

Since the fine was never paid, the AMCU later filed a lawsuit with the Economic Court of Kyiv with a request to enforce fines and penalties, as well as to recognize the obligation to stop violations of the antitrust legislation. The Kyiv Economic Court upheld the claim in early December 2016.

Late February 2017, the Kyiv Economic Court of Appeal upheld the decision of the Kyiv Economic Court to satisfy the claim of the AMCU on enforced recovery from Gazprom of a UAH 85.9 billion fine imposed in January 2016 and a UAH 85.9 billion penalty for late payment. The decision of the appellate instance prompted Gazprom to file an appeal.

In late May, Ukraine`s Minister of Justice Pavlo Petrenko said that the ministry was searching for Gazprom`s assets and property in order to recover the fine.

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