Uladzimir Makey, head of the Presidential Administration, on Monday introduced Alyaksandr Barowski, the newly appointed director general of the Minsk Automobile Factory (MAZ), to the company's staff.
Mr. Makey said that the factory's previous chief executive had failed to secure its proper performance. "However hurtful this may be for the previous leadership, but with the MAZ's economic performance deteriorating, the confidence that the enterprise will cope with the difficult situation also has been fading recently," the BelTA government-controlled news agency quoted him as saying.
The Presidential Administration head said that Mr. Barowski"is a political figure, above all, considering the importance and role that the enterprise has in the country's economic hierarchy."
Mr. Makey stressed that the manager had amassed much experience during his service as the chairman of the Belarusian State Petrochemical Industry Concern. "But what matters most is that he has a vast experience of crisis management: he worked for 10 years as the director of Belshyna's mass tire plant during a very tough period and prevented the enterprise's financial collapse or corporate raid. I will tell doubters: [Mr. Barowski] has been chosen not by accident. Alyaksandr Barowski has been appointed director general, not an engineer or the chief designer, and he, probably, does not need to know the method of calculating the truck's axle load," he was quoted as saying.
Mr. Barowski also will act as director general of BelawtaMAZ in which Belarus' leading truck company MAZ is the parent company.
Mr. Barowski, 58, worked for nearly 30 years at the Babruysk-based Belshyna tire plant before taking over as director general of the Palimir artificial fiber company in 2001.
In 2005, Mr. Barowski was appointed as chairman of Belnaftakhim.
He was arrested in May 2007 and sentenced to five years in a minimum security correction institution on a charge of power abuse on March 27, 2008. He was pardoned by the head of state and released on December 22, 2008.
The prosecution in the trial charged that Mr. Barowski had ordered the Naftan oil refinery in Navapolatsk to cancel supply contracts with Russia’s Tyumen Oil Company and strike more expensive contracts for the supply of 80,000 tons of light oil with two Belarusian companies, Triple and Interservice, with whose executives he had "friendly relationship."
The prosecution said that the Belarusian companies charged $350 per ton excluding VAT, $20 more than the Russian company.
The refinery took loans in March 2007 and paid the two companies $28 million, allegedly $1.6 million more than that it would have paid for the same supplies to the Tyumen Oil Company.
The prosecution also asked that the accused should pay some $1.6 million in damages to the Naftan refinery, but the Supreme Court rejected this claim.