Putin Bans Officials From Owning Foreign Assets Via Third Parties

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – December 29, 2016) Russian President Vladimir Putin has signed a law banning state officials from owning “foreign financial instruments” through third parties. The text of the new law – which applies to members of parliament, government officials, and law enforcement officers – was published on an official government legal website. The document defines foreign financial […]

» Read more

New Bill Forces Russian Companies to Disclose Owner Information

Russian State Duma Building file photo

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – June 8, 2016) Russia’s State Duma has passed a new bill obliging companies to disclose information on their beneficiaries at the request of the authorities, the TASS news agency reported Tuesday. The bill was prepared as part of the country’s push to improve economic transparency and decrease the use of offshore holdings. Russian President Vladimir […]

» Read more

RBTH: Russian business repatriates money from offshore zones

Cash, Calculator, Pen

Russian entrepreneurs have decided to bring their money back home from offshore havens. Statistics show that the largest amounts have returned to Russia from the Bahamas, the British Virgin Islands and Bermuda. Additionally, $1 billion or more has entered Russia from such countries as Germany, France and the UK. (Russia Beyond the Headlines – rbth.ru – ALEXEI LOSSAN, RBTH – […]

» Read more

Panama Papers: Are Russian entrepreneurs actually moving back onshore?

Hand Pulling Cash from Envelope

The latest information published from the Panama Papers shows that some Russian billionaires began closing their offshore companies after the beginning of the governmental de-offshorization campaign in 2015. (Russia Beyond the Headlines – ALEXEI LOSSAN, RBTH – rbth.ru – May 16, 2016) According to the business newspaper RBK Daily, the expanded database of the so-called Panama Papers, published in May […]

» Read more

Russia Ratifies International Agreement on Financial Information Exchange

File Photo of Man Placing Stack of Large Bills into Inside Pocket of Suitcoat

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – May 12, 2016) Russia has signed an international agreement on the exchange of financial information, state news agency TASS reported Thursday. The head of Russia’s Federal Taxation Service (FNS) Mikhail Mishustin said that Russia will join the global system of data exchange between tax authorities in different countries in 2018. “This will allow us to […]

» Read more

Were the Panama Papers Planted? Who Cares.

Hand Pulling Cash from Envelope

(Bloomberg – bloomberg.com – Leonid Bershidsky – April 15, 2016) Last week, a respected Russia scholar in the U.S. speculated that the Kremlin might be behind the so-called Panama Papers, the big dump of data about offshore accounts that has implicated several countries’ officials in shady dealings. And on Thursday, President Vladimir Putin of Russia blamed the U.S. for the […]

» Read more

Putin’s a Pauper, His Friends Are Rich

Putin Descending a Staircase

(Bloomberg – bloomberg.com – Leonid Bershidsky – April 4, 2016) Recent reports by two consortia of investigative journalists purport to have exposed the dealings and offshore accounts of some of Russian President Vladimir Putin’s closest associates. They don’t name him as a beneficiary of any account, suggesting that Putin is as poor as a church mouse — or would be […]

» Read more

Panama Papers scandal: Who is Russia’s Sergei Roldugin?

File Photo of Kremlin Tower, St. Basil's, Red Square at Night

One of the sections of the international journalistic investigation into corruption offshore networks used by the world’s rich and powerful is devoted specifically to Russia. It focuses on renowned cellist Sergei Roldugin, who is also godfather to one of Russian President Vladimir Putin’s daughters. (Russia Beyond the Headlines – rbth.ru – YEKATERINA SINELSCHIKOVA, RBTH – April 5, 2016) On Sunday […]

» Read more

NEWSWATCH Organized Crime and Corruption Reporting Project (OCCRP): “UKRAINE: THE PRESIDENT’S OFFSHORE TAX PLAN”

Petro Poroshenko file photo, with additional men in background, adapted from image at state.gov

… actions by his financial advisers and Poroshenko himself … worth an estimated US$ 858 million, make it appear that the candy magnate was more concerned about his own welfare than his country’s – going so far as to arguably violate the law twice, misrepresent information and deprive his country of badly needed tax dollars during a time of war. […]

» Read more

NEWSWATCH Deutsche Welle: Russia less-than-charitable toward charities.

Map of Russia and Russian Flag adapted from images at state.gov

Deutsche Welle covers governmental threats to charitable activities in Russia, including the saga of Dynasty and “foreign agent” labeling. … A law that calls those who receive funds from outside the country ‘foreign agents,’ an economic downturn that’s seen the market contract by 10 percent with no end in sight … sanctions that have seen the value of the ruble plummet to … anywhere […]

» Read more

Black cash still oils Ukrainian politics

Hand Pulling Cash from Envelope

(Business New Europe – bne.eu – KYIV BLOG: Graham Stack in Kyiv – July 17, 2015) In his first interview since being fired as head of Ukraine’s state security service on June 16, Valentyn Nalivaichenko alleged that Ukraine’s leading political parties are behind huge flows of secret funds moving to and fro from offshore jurisdictions. He is only the highest […]

» Read more

Beleaguered Russian Science Foundation Dynasty Delays Decision on Closure

File Photo of Test Tubes with Algae Displaying Different Colors, Part of U.S. Energy-Related Research; from nrel.gov

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Ivan Nechepurenko – June 9, 2015) Beleaguered science organization the Dynasty Foundation, which has been grappling in recent days with whether or not to shut its doors, announced that a decision on the matter will be delayed to provide time to wrap up ongoing projects, the Kommersant newspaper reported on Monday. Following its inclusion on […]

» Read more

$110 Billion Expected to Flee Russia This Year as Sanctions Bite

Hand Pulling Cash from Envelope

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – May 29, 2015) Capital flight from Russia is forecast to hit $110 billion this year, the Economic Development Ministry said Thursday, as Western sanctions limit foreign investment and force Russian companies to pay off billions of dollars in foreign debt. The ministry’s base forecast anticipates that U.S. and EU sanctions over Moscow’s actions in Ukraine […]

» Read more

Russia’s road to deoffshorisation and capital amnesty still ‘under construction’

Hand Pulling Cash from Envelope

(Business New Europe – bne.eu – Artem Toropov, senior associate in the tax practice at law firm Goltsblat BLP – May 7, 2015) More than a year has passed since the Russian “deoffshorisation” reform was switched into “active” mode by the Russian president. 2014 was dominated with work on the new legislation – but the result, to many, was quite […]

» Read more

Russian Capital Flight Slows to $32.6 Billion in First Quarter

Cash, Calculator, Pen

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – April 10, 2015) Net capital outflow from Russia was $32.6 billion in the first quarter of the year, down from $72.9 billion in the previous three months, suggesting that panic over Russia’s economic crisis has receded, data published this week by the Central Bank showed. Capital flight from Russia nearly tripled in 2014 from the […]

» Read more

Russia Sets Terms for Capital Amnesty to ‘Correct Past Mistakes’

Diverse Paper Currency, Coins, Line Graph

(Bloomberg – bloomberg.com – Andrey Biryukov, Anna Andrianova – March 26, 2015) Russia laid out the terms of a draft law to offer amnesty on repatriating capital, promising new incentives and legal protections to aid an economy starved of investment by sanctions over Ukraine. The bill won’t require the return of assets to Russian territory, demanding only their registration in […]

» Read more

Deputy Prime Minister Shuvalov Sees Hard Landing for Russia

Igor Shuvalov file photo

(Bloomberg – bloomberg.com – Olga Tanas, Ott Ummelas, Anna Andrianova – January 23, 2015) Russia is in an “extremely difficult” economic situation and faces a worse crisis than in 2008-2009, according to First Deputy Prime Minister Igor Shuvalov. The country must prepare for a hard landing, Shuvalov said at a breakfast organized by the nation’s biggest lender, OAO Sberbank (SBER), […]

» Read more

Ten New Laws That Will Affect Your Life in Russia in 2015

Kremlin and Saint Basil's File Photo

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Ivan Nechepurenko – January 21, 2015) New year, new you: An expression that has taken on a special meaning for those living in Russia, where a plethora of new laws – many with a direct impact on the daily lives of citizens and residents – entered into effect on Jan. 1. The Moscow Times has […]

» Read more

Putin offers Russian business ‘full’ offshore capital amnesty

Hands Opening Envelope Containing Cash

(Business New Europe – bne.eu – bne IntelliNews – December 4, 2014) Russian President Vladimir Putin has announced a complete capital amnesty, allowing businesses to repatriate offshore funds without fear of the consequences. “We need to finally turn the ‘offshore page’ in the history of our economy and country,” Putin told the federal assembly in his annual address. “If someone […]

» Read more

RIA Novosti: Putin Limits Foreign Capital’s Participation in Russian Media: Government

File Photo of Cash, Coins, Line Graph

MOSCOW, October 15 (RIA Novosti) – Russian President Vladimir Putin has signed a law reducing the possible share of foreign stockholders in the Russian media to 20 percent, says the corresponding document published on the Russian government’s official legal information web portal Wednesday. “Unless otherwise stipulated by an international treaty … a Russian legal entity with a foreign participation share […]

» Read more

Russia’s capital flight hits 75 billion dollars

File Photo of Cash, Coins, Line Graph

(Interfax – Moscow, July 9, 2014) According to an assessment by the Central Bank of Russia, the net export of capital by banks and companies from the Russian Federation in the first half of 2014 was 74.6bn dollars. That is 120 per cent higher than in the first half of 2013 (33.7bn dollars), the Bank of Russia [Central Bank] has […]

» Read more

RIA Novosti: Capital Outflow from Russia Due to Ruble Rate, Not Crimea

File Photo of Cash, Coins, Line Graph

BERLIN, April 10 (RIA Novosti) – The outflow of capital from Russia is not tied to events in Ukraine, but to fluctuations in the exchange rate of the ruble, Russian First Deputy Prime Minister Igor Shuvalov said Thursday. “The outflow of capital is not mainly tied to Crimea, the outflow, of course, is connected with the events that happened in […]

» Read more

Capital Flight Expected to Hit Staggering $70Bln in First Quarter

File Photo of Cash, Coins, Line Graph

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Anna Dolgov – March 25, 2014) Capital flight will reach up to $70 billion in the first quarter of this year amid the deterioration of the country’s relations with the West over Moscow’s annexation of Crimea, a deputy economy minister said. The forecast marks what would amount to the largest capital flight since the 2008 […]

» Read more

Interfax: Over $1 trillion moved out of Russia to offshore areas in 20 years – Federation Council Chair Matviyenko

Valentina Matviyenko file photo

MOSCOW. Dec 25 (Interfax) – More than $1 trillion has been siphoned off from the Russian economy to offshore territories in the past 20 years, Russian Federation Council Chair Valentina Matviyenko said on Wednesday. “According to estimates by numerous experts, over $1 trillion worth of Russian capitals has been funneled to offshore jurisdictions in 20 years,” Matviyenko said in an […]

» Read more

RIA Novosti: Top Russian Companies Pledge to Reduce Offshore Dependency

Cash, Calculator, Pen

MOSCOW, December 19 (RIA Novosti) ­ Several top Russian companies have announced plans to reduce their use of offshore holding structures after President Vladimir Putin repeated calls for “deoffshorization” last week, according to a Russian newspaper report Thursday. Aluminum producer Rusal, telecoms giant MTS, truck maker Kamaz, state-owned hydroelectric conglomerate RusHydro and iron ore miner Metalloinvest have all made commitments […]

» Read more

Interfax: Companies registered offshore will pay Russian taxes, receive no govt support – Putin

File Photo of Cash, Coins, Line Graph

MOSCOW. Dec 12 (Interfax) – Companies with Russian assets that are registered in foreign jurisdictions have to pay taxes according to Russian law, while at the same time will receiving no government support, state contracts, or VEB credits, Russian President Vladimir Putin has said. “As nothing [has been done about this] in this sphere [‘de-offshoring’ the economy] this year, I […]

» Read more

Interfax: ‘De-offshoring’ Russian economy will yield ‘tens of billions’ in additional revenue – Siluanov

File Photo of Cash, Coins, Line Graph

MOSCOW. Dec 12 (Interfax) – Initiatives to “de-offshore” the Russian economy, as voiced in President Vladimir Putin’s annual address to the Federal Assembly on Thursday, will make it possible to secure additional budget revenue totaling “tens of billions of rubles,” Finance Minister Anton Siluanov said. “I think it will be tens of billions of rubles,” Siluanov told journalists on Thursday. […]

» Read more

Interfax: Less than 0.1% of Russian public servants have foreign assets, mainly in CIS – Kremlin

Kremlin and St. Basil's

MOSCOW. Oct 30 (Interfax) – Some 1,600 Russian officials have property and bank accounts abroad, mainly real estate in CIS countries. “It has been established that presently slightly over 1,600 municipal and government officials have foreign assets. Given all the statistical errors this is less than 0.1% of all pubic servants,” head of the Kremlin administration Sergei Ivanov told the […]

» Read more

How Wealthy Russians Buy a 2nd Passport

File Photo of Man Placing Stack of Large Bills into Inside Pocket of Suitcoat

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Sam Skove – October 18, 2013) When Nuri Katz, founder of investment firm Apex Capital, heads for the customs gate, he gets to decide which of his three passports to use ­ – a privilege that his Russian clients would pay up to 5 million euros to enjoy. Katz is in the citizenship-by-investment business. Select […]

» Read more

Capital outflow putting pressure on ruble, forcing forecast revisions

File Photo of Cash, Coins, Line Graph

(Interfax – MOSCOW, September 25, 2013) The growing capital outflow from Russia is putting pressure on the ruble, the Economic Development Ministry said in an economic forecast for 2014-2016 published on Tuesday. “The increase in private capital outflow in 2013 from $30 billion to $70 billion, according to the forecast, was an important factor in the depreciation of the ruble,” […]

» Read more

Russian companies may be forced to declare offshore units

File Photo of Man Placing Stack of Large Bills into Inside Pocket of Suitcoat

(Business New Europe – bne.eu – August 28, 2013) The Kremlin’s drive to increase transparency and limit the amount of money held in offshore havens could be extended to companies, which will be forced to declare an overseas status. Duma deputy Dmitry Savelyev for the ruling United Russia Party, has submitted a bill, which would oblige the companies to inform […]

» Read more

Federation Council has no more senators with foreign assets – Matviyenko

Valentina Matviyenko file photo

(Interfax – MOSCOW, August 19, 2013) The Russian Federation Council has no more senators with foreign accounts and assets, Federation Council Speaker Valentina Matviyenko said. “Members of the Federation Council have complied with the demands of the federal law banning certain categories of citizens to have foreign accounts and assets. The limitations imposed by the law apply to senators as […]

» Read more

None of State Duma deputies prefers foreign assets to parliament seat

World Map Showing Continents, Greens, Browns, Ice

(Interfax – MOSCOW, August 19, 2013) At least 39 State Duma deputies were supposed to make decisions regarding their foreign assets and real estate abroad before August 19. A law, which came into effect on May 19, 2013, compelled deputies to abandon either their assets or their parliament seats. Deputies and public servants are permitted to have real estate abroad […]

» Read more

Russian Investors Flock to Virgin Islands After Cypriot Crisis

Map of Caribbean Sea and Environs, Including Virgin Islands Highlighted by Red Box

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Irina Filatova – August 19, 2013) President Vladimir Putin’s calls for domestic companies to repatriate their funds back home from offshore jurisdictions have fallen on deaf ears, with almost half of the $67 billion investment by Russian residents abroad in the first quarter of this year settling in the British Virgin Islands, according to figures […]

» Read more

Russia’s Wealthiest Selling Apartments in Moscow and Fleeing Country, Realtors Say

File Photo of Man Placing Stack of Large Bills into Inside Pocket of Suitcoat

(Window on Eurasia – Paul Goble – Staunton, August 14, 2013) Many in the Russian Federation and the West were shocked when European countries recently published figures showing that thousands of Russians are now seeking asylum or at least permanent residence abroad, but Russian realtors say that behind these numbers is an even more disturbing one. Ever more wealthy Russians […]

» Read more

Senators Choose Business or Power

File Photo of Man Placing Stack of Large Bills into Inside Pocket of Suitcoat

(Moscow Times/RIA Novosti – July 16, 2013) Though the spring session of the upper house of parliament is over, it might not signal an end to the steady stream of wealthy senators who have stepped down as the Kremlin put forward new restrictions on officials owning assets abroad. The nine members of the 166-seat Federation Council who have left since […]

» Read more

Customs Union Frauds Behind 40% of Russia Capital Flight

File Photo of Man Placing Stack of Large Bills into Inside Pocket of Suitcoat

(RIA Novosti – MOSCOW, June 20, 2013) Fictitious import contracts with entities from Customs Union member states Belarus and Kazakhstan accounted for 40 percent of Russia’s net capital outflow last year, business daily Vedomosti reported on Thursday citing Central Bank data. About $10 billion could have been laundered through fake imports schemes via Kazakhstan, the Central Bank said in a […]

» Read more

Putin to Let Foreign Banks Check Out Officials

Cash, Calculator, Pen

(Moscow TImes – themoscowtimes.com – June 10, 2013) President Vladimir Putin has signed a decree allowing foreign banks and international organizations to check foreign property belonging to election candidates running for positions in state bodies, a news report said Monday. The new law will affect all federal and regional elected officials including the president, State Duma deputies, governors and heads […]

» Read more

Russian Capital Flight Continues Unabated – Central Banker

File Photo of Cash, Coins, Line Graph

(RIA Novosti -ST. PETERSBURG, June 5, 2013) ­ Russian capital flight remains rampant, with no signs of slowing down, Central Bank chief Sergei Ignatyev said on Wednesday. “Unfortunately, capital outflow remains very high, I dare say. No fall in this trend can be seen,” Ignatyev said. He made headlines in February when he claimed a small group of well-connected individuals […]

» Read more

Medvedev: government officials should share economic risks by keeping money in Russia

File Photo of Cash, Coins, Line Graph

(Interfax – MOSCOW, May 22, 2013) Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev believes that government officials and members of parliament should share economic risks with the rest of the country and keep their money in Russian banks, but he is not convinced that they should be prohibited from holding foreign assets. “Members of the government, State Duma deputies, administration officials should after […]

» Read more

Ban on Foreign Holdings Gives Kremlin Muscovy-Like Control, Commentator Says

File Photo of Man Placing Stack of Large Bills into Inside Pocket of Suitcoat

(Window on Eurasia – Paul Goble – Staunton, May 10 ­ New Russia legislation to prevent officials from having cash or stock accounts abroad, promoted by the regime as a step toward “the nationalization of the elite,” brings Russia into line with countries like Bangladesh rather than the West and gives the Kremlin powers much like those of medieval Muscovy, […]

» Read more

Russia’s 20 Biggest Billionaires Keep Riches From Putin

File Photo of Man Placing Stack of Large Bills into Inside Pocket of Suitcoat

(Bloomberg – bloomberg.com – Robert LaFranco & Alex Sazonov – May 1, 2013) Alisher Usmanov, Russia’s richest person, moved control of most of his $20 billion fortune last year to a holding company based in the British Virgin Islands, a collection of more than 60 isles 5,600 miles away from Moscow. The company, USM Holdings, controls the billionaire’s most valuable […]

» Read more

Belousov upbeat about investment inflow, says capital flight a myth

File Photo of Cash, Coins, Line Graph

(Interfax – SOCHI, April 22, 2013) Economic Development Minister Andrei Belousov has described claims that capital outflow from Russia has assumed a “gigantic” scope as a myth. “Assertions that capital outflow has assumed a gigantic scope, and that there are signs of capital flight are a myth,” Belousov told reporters after a meeting on economic issues chaired by President Vladimir […]

» Read more

Long-term consequences of extraordinary measures taken in Cyprus are not known yet – Putin

Cyprus Map

(Interfax – SOCHI, April 22, 2013) Russian President Vladimir Putin said the long-term consequences of the extraordinary measures taken in Cyprus are not known yet. “We see what methods of resolving debt problems are used on specific countries, I mean Cyprus, where the measures that have been taken essentially undermine confidence in the financial system,” Putin told a meeting on […]

» Read more

Gref opposes internal offshore zones, proposes steps to bring capital back to Russia

File Photo of German Gref Shaking Hands with U.S. Official

(Interfax – MOSCOW, April 19, 2013) The president and CEO of leading Russian lender Sberbank (RTS: SBER), German Gref opposes the idea of creating internal offshore zones in Russia, but is proposing that special measures be developed to bring capital back to the country, possibly even an amnesty for capital that now flees to offshore jurisdictions. “I don’t really believe […]

» Read more

Russians want to know MP’s income, spending, would ban foreign assets – poll

Duma Session file photo

(Interfax –  Moscow, April 15, 2013) Only 4 per cent of Russian do not care what incomes State Duma deputies have, while the vast majority (92 per cent) would like to know this and therefore support the use of such measures as mandatory declaration of incomes and spending for the elected representatives of the people. Some 90 per cent of […]

» Read more

Russian Cabinet Member to Repatriate Assets as Restrictions Loom

Igor Shuvalov file photo

(Bloomberg – bloomberg.com – Olga Tanas & Scott Rose – April 12, 2013) Russian First Deputy Prime Minister Igor Shuvalov and his wife, the second-biggest earners among families of Cabinet members, plan to move their assets under Russian jurisdiction to comply with new restrictions. Shuvalov and his wife Olga are planning to shift their foreign holdings, Alexander Machevsky, a spokesman […]

» Read more

Kremlin advises officials to start closing foreign accounts, including those in CIS

Map of Western CIS/FSU and European Environs

(Interfax – MOSCOW, April 11, 2013) Russian state officials, reporting their income and expenses exceeding joint income of their families for three years, will have to declare foreign bank accounts and securities kept not only in foreign banks but in banks of the Customs Union and the CIS as well, aide of the Russian State Presidential Legal Directorate, Valentin Mikhailov, […]

» Read more

What drives ‘nationalization’ of Russia’s elite?

Hands Opening Envelope Containing Cash

(Russia Beyond the Headlines – rbth.ru – Georgy Bovt, special to RBTH – April 12, 2013) Georgy Bovt is a prominent Russian columnist and political expert.   The Russian anti-corruption campaign gains momentum. Will the Russian public be in favor of even stronger measures? Russia’s anti-corruption campaign looks like an attempt to “nationalize” the state elite by increasing their stakes […]

» Read more
1 2