Russian Energy: Hide and Seek
Companies getting around sanctions on Russian companies
Between 60 to 75% of Russian coal exports are traded in Switzerland. Despite Switzerland backing sanctions against Russia, shell companies and other schemes have allowed Swiss trade to continue with Russia.
According to NGO, Public eye, 75% of Russian coal exports are traded in Switzerland. 'Switzerland is at the center of Putin's coal hub', says researcher Adria Budry Carbo. One Russian mining company, Suek, was previously owned by oligarch Andrei Melnitchnko - who then transferred shares to his wife, before she herself was blacklisted. It's an emerging trend: ownership is transferred, allowing for a brief window before blacklisting. 'There is an industry of lawyers and trustees willing to take over these positions', explains Carbo. 'Traders can move to countries where banks are financing the trade with Russia', explains a spokesperson for the Swiss Trading and Shipping Association.FULL SYNOPSIS