Crime & Justice

New law gives Putin control over ‘unfriendly’ foreign individuals’ assets and companies

Moscow, Dec 6 (EFE).- Russia’s State Duma, the lower house of the Federal Assembly of Russia, approved a draft legislation on Wednesday allowing the head of state to impose external administration over the assets of individuals and companies from “unfriendly” countries.

The draft legislation, which still requires Senate approval, confers the status of a law to a power that Russian President Vladimir Putin has held by decree since April 25 of this year.

The decree was issued in response to the freezing of Russian assets abroad due to the conflict in Ukraine.

Under the new law, the head of state will have the authority to determine how Russian legal entities must fulfill their obligations to individuals from unfriendly foreign states. It also stipulates that the head of state may temporarily administer their property.

The president of the brewery Baltika, Taimuraz Bolloev, has proposed to the head of the Federal Agency for State Property Management, Vadim Yakovenko, to nationalize the company.

The company is owned by the Danish group Carlsberg and is currently under temporary administration, the Russian newspaper Vedomosti reported on Wednesday.

On Oct. 31, the CEO of the Danish brewer Carlsberg, Jacob Aarup-Andersen, accused the Russian government of “stealing” his company’s business. He pointed out that the company has been unable to reach an agreement after the state took control of its assets.

In the presentation of Carlsberg’s nine-month results, Aarup-Andersen said: “There is no way around the fact that they have stolen our business in Russia, and we are not going to help them make that look legitimate.”

At the end of June, Carlsberg announced the sale of its subsidiary Baltika without disclosing the buyer.

The sale is contingent on the Russian government’s approval of the transaction, following Carlsberg’s announcement of withdrawal from Russia in March 2022 due to the war in Ukraine.

A month later, Putin signed a decree authorizing the government to take temporary control over Carlsberg’s assets, subsequently breaking the agreement that allowed Baltika to produce and sell its products in Russia. EFE

mos/dgp/ics

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