Latviski English По-русски
Ceturtdiena 23.11.2017 | Name days: Zigfrīda, Zigrīda, Zigrīds

Mikelsons: the whole thing is a high-level political frame-up

(No Ratings Yet)

Karlis Mikelsons

Former chief executive of electric utility A/S Latvenergo, Karlis Mikelsons, who was released from prison today on bail of LVL 50 000 security money, believes that the whole thing is a high-level political game.

In the interview for radio SWH, Mikelsons refrained from revealing neither the possible participants involved in this frame-up, or the political forces that regarded him as hindrance. He assumes that participants from the powerful eastern neighbour Russia, as well as, other participants from the Baltic and the Nordic energy markets could be involved in this case.

Moreover, Mikelsons does not preclude the possibility that he has been a hindrance for some alternative energy producers; recalling that, before the determination of Riga second coal-fired power station’s (TEC-2) construction, there were discussions on the fact that another solid fuel power station is planned to be built in the city of Liepaja.

Nonetheless, he stressed that this «fight of giants» in which he «happened to be involved» is solely about the place in the Baltic States and Scandinavia markets. Latvenergo is an insignificant player for this level of market, compared with participants from Russian and Scandinavian. But we are commensurable with Estonians and Lithuanians, said Mikelsons; also recognizing that, possibly, someone did not like that Latvia can not only produce and sell electricity, but is also able to fully provide it for itself; thus, excluding the possibility of setting electricity prices in Latvia from outside.

Mikelsons expects that the investigation and maintaining the action in the court will take several years. «The facts will be gathered, inspection will be carried out, and, afterwards, the appeal will be looked at, and, finally, it will be submitted in the prosecutor’s office. I have to take into account that this will take some time, » added the dismissed executive of A/S Latvenergo.

When asked about the future plans, Mikelsons remained that he has not been imposed restrictions of action, except that he cannot work at Latvenergo or companies affiliated with it. He conceded that he will most likely return to private business sector, because he has to work somewhere.

When speaking about questions concerning Latvenergo and its activities, Mikelsons used the pronoun ‘us’, not- Latvenergo. Later on he explained that he will have to grow used to the new situation, but, at the same time, stressed that, like any other inhabitant of Latvia, he is a state-share holder at the concern.

When asked about the decision making process in Latvenergo, he pointed out that it is a steadfast, complex and lengthy process. Most of the decision at the time when he was the head of the concern was adopted only with unanimous consent of all members of the executive board, but there were doubts, the project was revised.

It is the devoir of the board to make the final decision, as well as, to prepare competitions, and assess the applications. Then, if necessary, there are also additional ordinances – the necessary reconciliations with shareholders, ministries and the government are made.

Only then follows the decision of the board, which is based on the prepared materials. When the board of Latvenergo existed, all purchases exceeding the sum of LVL 250 000 were monitored by it. « Now, the board was replaced by stockholder Juris Puce (the Secretary of State for the Ministry of Economics), who was in charge of decision making for the said projects,» told Mikelsons.

Mikelsons’ lawyer Egons Rusanovs previously remarked that Mikelsons was charged with favourable decision making for the two enterprises – Alstom Network Swizerland AG and GAMA GŪC Sistemleri Muhendislik ve Taahhut, however, today the former head of Latvenergo indicated that, in both cases, more than 50 people were involved in the decision making. Yet, he hasn’t received reply on why only few were accused.

Mikelsons claims that it was impossible to make decisions single-handedly during his time at Latvenergo, nor it is right now.

Also, yesterday, in the interview for TV Company LNT, Mikelsons suggested that his and few other former Latvenergo board member’s arrest may be connected with company’s privatisation. At the time when the money will have to be returned to the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the World Bank, the sum will have to be gathered somehow. They will at sometime ask to sell something. The IMF has already publicly suggested heading to the direction of privatisation, said Mikelsons.

He doubted whether the IMF has already been given promise to privatize Latvenergo, but there could be certain hints. In his opinion, the privatization itself and in holding company’s coming to private hands would not be the worst variant, but, whether the assets belong to us or someone who does not care about what’s happening in this country.

Mikelsons claimed that he and his representatives have still not been given a clear answer on what were the accusations, and, what he has done wrong. He also assumed that the events of last few months are linked to the political situation in the country, but he does not think that it was done in interests of certain politicians. However, as far as he is concerned, the fact that the day, he was detained, decisions to convoke the shareholders meeting and on his removal from office were already made.

He assumed that CPCB had been given political orders to arrest him, other members of Latvenergo board and several private persons.

Mikelsons, who was exempted from the detention, is determined to fight for his rights, and prove that, at best, it had been a mistake, but, at the worst, it was a deliberate action.

After acquainting himself with the requirements for chairman position at Latvenergo, Mikelsons concluded that there is a small number of candidates in Latvia who comply with these requirements. He refused to name specific persons. There are not too many companies with over 500 employees, and executives with the necessary education. Also, if we look at who wants to change jobs or who does not have job…, he added with suspicion, saying that the offered salary inadequately low for such post.

Leave a reply

Family of killed Maltese journalist take police to court

The family of the killed Maltese journalist Daphne Caruana Galizia has sued police believing that it does not perform an impartial investigation.

Saeima reduces VAT for vegetables, berries and fruits typical for Latvia

Starting 2018, a reduced VAT rate will be applied for fresh fruits, berries and vegetables in Latvia. This is provided by amendments approved by the Saeima on 22 November for Law on Value Added Tax.

Georgian anti-terrorist raid ends tragically

In the Georgian capital Tbilisi, security officers have conducted an anti-terrorist raid in an apartment, where a shoot-out has started and three suspected militants and a special forces' soldier have been killed.

Jerošenko: Ušakovs offers unhealthy policy, Harmony is used as Lembergs’ «satellite party»

«Cooperation between Harmony and Aivars Lembergs’ Union of Greens and Farmers has always existed. It existed even before Harmony first appeared in Riga City Council. The situation is the same in the Saeima, even though Concord is in the opposition. Still, in situations when one or the other matter important to Lembergs appears, one does not have to be a great politologist to notice the ties between those parties...

Bosnian Serb commander punished with life imprisonment for Srebrenica

The UN the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia handed a life imprisonment sentence to Ratko Mladić after it found the former commander of Bosnian Serb forces guilty of genocide and crimes against humanity committed in the 1990s during the Bosnian War.

EC positive about Latvia’s 2018 budget project

Based on the conclusion from the European Commission, Latvia’s budget project for 2018 fully fits conditions listed in the Stability and Growth Pact. In accordance with EC’s estimates, the structural balance of Latvia’s general budget is viewed at -1.8% of GDP. Government budget expenditures, on the other hand, are expected to grow by 7.1 percentage points.

Producer price level in Latvia declined 0.2% in October

Compared to September, the level of producer prices in Latvian industry dropped by 0.2 % in October 2017. Prices of products sold on the domestic market decreased by 0.5 %, while prices of exported products went up by 0.1 %.

Vaškevičs feels «harsh but fair» attitude from court justice system in Austria

Former deputy director of Latvia’s State Revenue Service Vladimirs Vaškevičs, who is accused of bribery and whose extradition from Austria has been a priority for Latvian authorities for some time now, says he feels «harsh but, thank God, fair» attitude from the Austrian court justice system.

Antāne: lost Russian cargoes have cost Latvia nearly 50 million in nine months

Latvia’s economy has lost nearly EUR 50 million in nine months because of missed Russian transit cargoes. While Russian Railway had approved 90% of oil and coal cargoes for transit through Ventspils port at the beginning of the year, this amount had declined to a mere 5% by September, says Baltic Association – Transport and Logistics President Inga Antāne.

In pictures: Museum of painter, Holocaust survivor Bak opened in Vilnius

In Vilnius, a museum to Jewish-Polish painter Samuel Bak has been opened. During the occupation of Lithuania by the Nazi Germany, the artist survived the Holocaust in the country.

Ratio of old people and invalids on a rise among unemployed people

The total number of unemployed people has been decreasing in recent years. However, the ratio of old people and invalids continues increasing in the ranks of unemployed people. On top of that, the number of lasting unemployed people remains high and largely unchanged in the country.

Saaremaa looking into possible ferry traffic to Latvia

The local government of the largest Estonian island is looking into possible interest of five shipping companies in opening ferry traffic between Saaremaa and Latvia.

Balta: exhaustion and overload are the most common causes for accidents at work

More than EUR 20,000 has been paid in compensations for injuries acquired at work this year so far, according to information from insurance association Balta. Compared with the same period of last year, the number of accidents has grown 40%.

Estonian town tempts population to reregister with spa in Latvia and 100 euro payment

The town of Keila, located 25 kilometres away from Tallinn, has started a one-and-a-half month campaign to motivate its residents to register back in the town as many of them have registered in the Estonian capital, which grants free public transport to its population.

EU to impose fine to Poland if logging in Białowieża forest not stopped

The European Court of Justice has issued to Poland a 15-day deadline to provide proof that the country has fulfilled the court's ruling to quit logging in the ancient Białowieża forest threatening with a daily fine of 100 000 euros if it fails to prove this.

Rīgas namu pārvaldnieks: building restoration will be next year’s priority

Rīgas namu pārvaldnieks plans to focus on improving technical state of its managed buildings. The company plans to restore several dozen buildings next year and up to 100 buildings a year in the next five years, says RNP chairman Aivars Gontarevs.

LCB: even deputies should fulfil their promises

Latvijas ceļu būvētājs, which is an association in Latvia with ties to multiple road and bridge construction companies, invites deputies to support the proposal for the restoration of the State Road Fund, BNN was told by the association’s chairman Andris Bērziņš.

Russia rejects claims of nuclear accident despite radioactive cloud over France

Russia has stated that a nuclear accident has not taken place in its territory although its weather service has found high amounts of traces of a radioactive isotope.

Study: taxes for business in Latvia – the most attractive among Baltic States

Latvia’s tax system is the most attractive among Baltic States and 13th most attractive among 190 countries of the world, according to the latest study performed by the World Bank and PricewaterhouseCoopers on tax systems around the world.

Turkish journalist punished with prison term for tweet

A court in Turkey has sentenced on Tuesday, November 21, a journalist from opposition newspaper Cumhuriyet to three years behind bars over accusations of spreading terrorist propaganda in relation to a post on Twitter, which had been briefly on the microblogging site this spring.

Latvia – 35th country in the world ICT development-wise

This year Latvia reached 35th place in the world in terms of development of information and communication technologies, as mentioned in the latest report by UN International Telecommunication Union.

Instant payment infrastructure comes online in Europe

On Tuesday, 21 November, instant payment infrastructure will be introduced across Europe. On top of that, European banks’ founded EBA Clearing will also introduce its RT1 instant payment system. The European-level solution has also been coordinated with the instant payment processing infrastructure prepared by the Bank of Latvia in August 2017, as reported by the bank.

Police dismantle criminal group that caused damage worth seven million euros to the state

Latvian State Revenue Service’s Finance Police dismantled a criminal group in November 2017. A total of 34 searches were performed and two people were found suspect. The criminal group performed tax avoidance and money laundering operations, causing damages worth nearly seven million euros to the state, BNN was informed by SRS.

Zariņš: deputies who vote for the state budget without amendments will have breached their vows

It is unacceptable for the Saeima coalition to follow the Cabinet of Ministers and like the Cabinet of Ministers breach laws during the budget approval process, says Saeima member Ivars Zariņš, adding that deputies who vote for the budget without amendments will thereby have to breach the vow they had previously made to the Latvian nation.

Estonia’s ruling Centre Party shows door to 31 competing members

The leadership of Estonia's Center Party has accepted the proposals of the party's local branches on fellow members, who ran in the Estonian municipal elections this autumn from a separate list, and expelled 31 members from the political party.

Newest comments