31 Jul 2023 09:26

Russia not planning to take over management of new foreign assets after Danone, Baltika - Putin

ST. PETERSBURG. July 31 (Interfax) - There are currently no plans to transfer the management of assets of unfriendly non-residents to the state, as it happened with Baltika (owned by Carlsberg) and Danone Russia (owned by Danone), these cases were special, Russian President Vladimir Putin told reporters in St. Petersburg on Saturday.

"No, nothing like this is prepared at present. And the thing that happened was because the management of these companies attempted to pressure Russian citizens, their employees, threatening with possible layoffs in case they express a certain civil stance," the president said, answering an Interfax question.

"Hopefully, no such thing repeats in the future," he said.

"In general, we are quite friendly towards our partners who do not want to leave Russia, we're not seizing anything from anyone," Putin said.

"No such thing is planned. The same thing [the lack of plans to transfer management of assets to the state] applies to the banking sectors [namely, subsidiaries of foreign banks in Russia]. We welcome those who want to work here and will assist then in any way," Putin said.

The presidential decree establishing the possible transfer of shares of non-residents on the Russian market originating from the unfriendly states to the temporary management of the Federal Agency for State Property Management was issued in late April and initially applied to two power generating companies Fortum and Unipro. In July, two more companies, both from the consumer sector - Baltika Breweries and Danone Russia - were subject to the new mechanism. At the time, Baltika was approaching the change of its ownership, Carlsberg announced an agreement on the purchase of the asset by an unknown customer. The motives behind the Russian authorities' decision on these two companies have not been voiced until now.