Updated at 14:52,24-02-2021

Belarusian oligarch Varabey may lose one of his most valuable businesses

Euroradio

Belarusian oligarch Varabey may lose one of his most valuable businesses
It is about an oil pipeline in Ukraine / collage by Euroradio​
The National Security and Defense Council (NSDC) of Ukraine may impose sanctions against Prykarpat-Zapadtrans on February 19. This firm, which operates an oil pipeline running through the western part of the country, may have to stop operations because of its ties to "Putin's cousin" Viktor Medvedchuk. But Belarusian businessman Mikalai Varabey will also be affected by this. Here's why.

It's all about the pipe


Varabey is the owner of the controlling stake in Prykarpat-Zapadtrans. After the start of the war in Donbass, the pipe passed from Russia's Transneft to companies associated with Viktor Medvedchuk and his associate Taras Kozak -- we have already told you about this in detail.

The company is still associated with Medvedchuk. In addition, it cooperates with other firms affiliated with "Putin's cousin."

However, a serious threat began to loom over the future of Prykarpat-Zapadtrans even before the mid-February: the National Anti-Corruption Bureau of Ukraine (NABU) and the Specialized Anti-Corruption Prosecution Office of the SBU (SAP) had questioned the legality of the pipeline purchase. It is assumed that because of the knowingly false conclusions of the experts, the court did not recognize the state's ownership of the oil pipeline.



If such conclusions of the controlling bodies are confirmed, Varabey and his partners may lose their company. And at the same time they may lose good opportunities to make money from oil product deliveries.

Additional problems


But even if Varabey keeps his company, the prospects are far from rosy. Due to the businessman's inclusion in the sanctions list over his close ties with Lukashenka, Western banks began to cut curtail their financing of Prykarpat-Zapadtrans.

This, in turn, could result in serious financial problems for the company. The fact that Prykarpat-Zapadtrans cannot earn much from the re-export of Russian fuel, which is due to the imposed special duties, also plays a negative role.

It is not entirely clear what sanctions against Prykarpat-Zapadtrans may be imposed by the National Security and Defense Council. However, it could be a ban on the company's activities - this recently happened to a number of Taras Kozak's companies, including his TV channels.

If the CNBO decides to stop the operation of the pipeline, Varabey will lose extra source of income. In the long run, he will also lose the pipeline, if it goes to Ukraine. It is doubtful that he will be compensated for his investment in the company.