Translated from Russian by J.Hawk
Crimea’s authorities signed first two large-scale contracts
concerning energy development with investors, totaling $30 million. 200
additional contracts are under consideration.
Crimea recently brought its Russian State Registry database
online, which makes it possible to conclude land deals and to receive necessary
deeds of ownership.
In order to rule out the possibility of investors being
denied approval by dishonest bureaucrats, Crimea’s government issued a
directive which prohibits turning down investment proposals unless the
responsible official explains in person why the proposal was turned down.
Crimea’s free economic zone law is in effect, and there exist loopholes which enable
sanctions regime to be circumvented [emphasis in the original].
J.Hawk’s Comment: The policies described above represent an
interesting approach to dealing with corruption which Russia inherited from
Ukraine as it annexed Crimea. This approach makes it very difficult to turn
down a proposal solely on the basis of insufficient bribes paid to the
officials in charge of approving investment contracts.
Once again, energy seems to be at the top of the agenda. Are
talking powerplants, natural gas development, or both? Or something else?
Finally, the bolded last sentence indicates that, Crimea
sanctions regime notwithstanding, the EU at least seems to be willing to look
the other way as European companies or their convenient spin-offs try to take
advantage of the favorable investment climate in the most recent acquisition of
the Russian Federation. 200 investment contracts in the works? That’s probably
more than the investment activity in all of Ukraine…