RBС publishes comments made by Mikhail Ilyin on the dispute concerning Baltiisky zavod

5 December 2011

Baltiisky zavod along with workers shall be transferred to a new OOO.

Baltiisky zavod, which has been subject-matter of a nearly two-year-long dispute between the Central bank and the United Shipbuilding Corporation (OSK), on the one side, and the United Industrial Corporation (OPK) of ex-senator Sergei Pugachev, on the other side, still received new government orders. The total order value for the next four years will make about 18 billion roubles. Contracts will be concluded with a new legal entity named OOO “Baltiisky Zavod Sudostroenie”, while OAO “Baltiisky Zavod” with current credit indebtedness of 15 billion roubles, will be made bancrupt. The staff of the plant will be transferred to the new OOO, as will be orders.

The Prime Minister Vladimir Putin has traditionally assumed the role of savior - this time he saved Baltiisky Zavod which has been at the pre-bankruptcy stage for more than a year. On Friday he arrived to the plant, where he held a meeting concerning the situation at the enterprise. Following this meeting, four contracts were signed which stipulate for building three 16MW diesel icebreakers and one 25 MW diesel icebreaker. Victor Olersky, the deputy minister of transport of the Russian Federation has earlier told the reporters that a 16MW icebreaker is assessed at 4.2 billion roubles, and a 25 MW icebreaker is assessed at 7.9 billion roubles. Moreover, following the results of Putin’s visit, two agreements were signed with Baltiisky Zavod which stipulate for preparing for construction of several 60MW nuclear-powered icebreakers, and for using plant capacities in manufacturing floating parts of hulls of the two Mistral class helicopter carrier ships.

The Vice Prime Minister Dmitry Kozak came up with a proposal how to help the enterprise get through difficult situation. “To protect the staff, and to preserve the production potential, we are bound to agree to make the plant bankrupt,” he said. The Vice Prime Minister presupposed that it would be possible, using bankruptcy procedure, to decrease the debt which currently makes 15 billion roubles. However, to avoid the situation where the money allocated to the plant to ensure completion of new orders (assessed at 18 billion roubles for the next 4 years) shall be collected by creditors, “it is necessary to transfer the staff to a separate independent legal entity”. This entity is already registered, and the whole plan is agreed with trade committee. The whole staff of the enterprise shall be transferred to the new company named “Baltiisky Zavod Sudostroenie”. This company will complete government orders.

Interestingly, realization of this plan was up in the air at the beginning of the last week. On Tuesday, November 29, the ninth arbitration court of appeals cancelled earlier decision to transfer of 88.32% shares of Baltiisky Zavod in trust to the Central bank. Actually, the plant got again under OPK control. However, this uncertain situation lasted only for two days. On Thursday, December 1, OSK declared that execution of the decision adopted by the Moscow ninth arbitration court of appeals was suspended by the Moscow district Federal arbitration court. A day after OPK declared that shareholders of Baltiisky Zavod and “Severnaya Verf” never transferred their shares in trust to the Central bank of the Russian Federation, or to OSK.

Two months ago, on September 29, 2011, the Moscow Arbitration court transferred Baltiisky Zavodin trust to Bank Rossii as security at the claim filed by Central Bank. The bank, in their turn transferred Baltiisky Zavodin trust to the United Shipbuilding Corporation. It was earlier reported that shares of Baltiisky Zavodalong with shares of “Severnaya Verf” were put by Central Bank in a pledge to the United Industrial Corporation, where they are held as collateral for loans to Mezhprombank, which also belongs to the United Industrial Corporation, for a total amount of 32 billion roubles.

Establishment of a new legal entity shall not solve the issues of bankruptcy of OAO “Baltiisky Zavod ”, since debts with creditors shall be settled out of plant property, said Mikhail Ilyin, the lawyer of S&K Vertikal. “Should the plant fail to meet creditors' requirements, all the property shall be sold, which shall prevent “Baltiisky Zavod Sudostroenie” from completing orders. Therefore, establishment of “Baltiisky Zavod Sudostroenie” is a stopgap measure to ensure that the plant keeps working, rather than a way to solve issues concerning debts with creditors,” summarized the lawyer.

Andrei Zhukov, Inga Vorobyova


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