Russian PPP road deal is a tangled offshore maze
As the press release says:
An opaque web of offshore companies and oligarchs behind the controversial Moscow–St. Petersburg motorway public-private partnership provides new grounds for the Russian government to re-examine the project.Download the full report, Vinci – a cover for oligarchs and tax havens in Russia's first road PPP. It is a fascinating but unpleasant study looking at the nexus between money, political power, tax havens, environmental and human rights issues.
The concession-holder - the North West Concession company (NWCC), led by French construction giant Vinci - consists of a whole network of companies, ending up in the British Virgin Islands, where it is impossible to obtain information about shareholders", explains Pippa Gallop, Bankwatch's Research Co-ordinator. "These complex set-ups seem to be aimed at hiding the true beneficiaries of NWCC's lucrative contract, which is unacceptable enough in any case but especially in a publicly funded infrastructure project."
"Nevertheless, the research has confirmed the involvement of Prime Minister Putin's reported associate Arkady Rotenberg", she continues. “This obviously raises questions about the integrity of the 2008 tender process, in which only one bidder qualified, and about the Russian government's December 2010 decision to continue with the disputed routing through Khimki Forest near Moscow, after President Medvedev had called a halt to preparatory works in late August."
All these things are interconnected, via the tax havens. For those who have copies of Treasure Islands, turn to pp149-150 of the English edition, or pp131-2 in the U.S. edition, to see just what we mean.