Gazprom under nationalization

Turkey has seized its biggest trader in the country, Akfel Holding.
As the "Kommersant", "Gazprom" may lose its biggest asset in Turkey. The Turkish authorities in early December on suspicion of having links with an organization Gülen de facto nationalized Akfel Holding - the largest private gas importer in the country, which hold shares "Gazprom" and Gazprombank. According to "Kommersant", the attempts to establish a dialogue with the monopoly of the Turkish authorities have so far failed, although it must now go to negotiations on the price of gas supplies to private importers in 2017. As a result, a new gas dispute with Turkey seems almost inevitable.

The shares of "Gazprom" and Gazprombank Akfel Holding, the largest private importer of Russian gas to Turkey, were de facto nationalized, told "Kommersant" sources familiar with the situation. The fact that the Turkish authorities took control and changed Akfel Holding Board of Directors, reported ICIS Heren on 6 December but then the status of the Russian investment was not clear. Now, according to sources, "b", close to Akfel shareholders, Turkish Deposit Insurance Fund (TMSF) informally told them that "acts as a shareholder." In "Gazprom" and Akfel declined to comment, TMSF did not respond to the request "b".

The largest structure Akfel Holding - Akfel Gas (contract with "Gazprom" to 2.25 billion cubic meters of gas per year), Avrasia (0,5 billion) and Enerco (2,5 billion). In the last two companies, 60% owned joint venture Akfel and Gazprombank. The other 40% belong to the Enerco Austrian OMV. The group "Gazprom" there is also a minority stake in Akfel Holding. Besides, "Gazprom" option to buy 50% in Akfel Gas, but the deal, which began in 2014, is not closed due to lack of approval by the Turkish regulator. In general Akfel group companies account for 55% of the portfolio of supplies, "Gazprom" private Turkish importers and approximately 20% of all Russian gas deliveries to Turkey. The Group does not disclose financial results, according to "Kommersant", its annual revenues from the gas business can be $ 400-500 million.

According to sources, "b", 2 December Turkish authorities completely changed Akfel Holding Board of Directors, it included representatives TMSF and consultants. This was made possible by emergency decree N674, adopted after the July coup attempt in Turkey. The document allows the authorities to "take control" of the company, who are accused or even just suspected of financing the organization Gülen (recognized as a terrorist in Turkey). The victims of the decree have become about 1.2 thousand. Turkish companies.

"Kommersant" The parties argue that if Akfel investigated were the founders of due brothers Murat and Fatih Baltachi, but no documents or evidence to explain his suspicions the authorities have not yet submitted to the shareholders. Murat Baltachi is under arrest, Fatih left Turkey. According to the source "b" close to Akfel shareholders Baltachi gentlemen already completely out of the capital group and retain only a small minority stakes in a number of companies.

According to "Kommersant", in "Gazprom" situation perceived extremely painful, and the head of the company Alexey Miller raised the issue at a meeting with Prime Minister Binali Yildirim, who arrived in Moscow on December 6, but he did not give substantive explanations. "We have just taken the most effective and profitable seller of Russian gas to Turkey," - says the source "b" close to "Gazprom". In his opinion, the asset "took the meet." How tough stance takes monopoly, is unclear because it needs a working relationship with the Turkish authorities to implement politically extremely important project "Turkish stream".

In any case, the local gas dispute with Turkey has provided, since the discount on gas for private importers, which they achieved in April (see. "B" of 13 April), is no longer valid since 2017. Now the company would have had to carry on with "Gazprom export" price negotiations for 2017, but they are actually rolled, ascertain the source "b". In addition, "Gazprom" and the Turkish state company Botas gas is now arguing on gas prices in the Stockholm arbitration.

Sources "Kommersant" suggested that now "beam Turkish gas problems" will be permanently interconnected and politicized as to solve them, and on this side and the other side will be the same people. Thus, a number of interlocutors "Kommersant" points out that the head of the Turkish Ministry of Energy Berat Albayrak, son of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, was the subject is aware of the situation Akfel. Such a situation, given the murder Russian Ambassador to Turkey (see. Material p. 1), and will require the adoption by the Russian side is not only commercial but also political decisions.