InUkraine, there is a unique company - Dnipropetrovsk Pointwork Plantproducing turnouts for the railroad. They need to be repaired, and5-7% have to be replaced for new ones every year. However, the railupdate, and pointworks in particular, will be dramatically reducedin 2013! And the reasons for the reduction of switches procurement- corruption and unfair competition. But the resonance of the storymakes the fact that in the center of controversy is one of theheads of the Cabinet - Deputy Prime Minister Oleksandr Vilkul,reports Censor.NET.
How competition of the two companies ended in"raids" by government bodies we learn from witness No. 1 - one ofthe shareholders of the Dnipropetrovsk Pointwork Plant OlehLevin:
"We have a positive attitude to competition fromKerch Pointwork Plant included in the sphere of influence of SCM.Our relationship with SCM has always been polite and cooperative,as we were one of the largest customers of their products. Specialrails for our switches have been purchased at Azovstal for over 20years. In addition, two years the Ministry of Infrastructure washeaded by Vice Prime Minister Borys Kolesnikov, who, I hear, is aclose friend of the SCM shareholder Rinat Akhmetov. And during thecourse of his work Kolesnikov did not how a single case when thesepersonal relationships affected the state's attitude to issues ofcompetition between Dnipropetrovsk and Kerch plants. On thecontrary, there was a professional approach to business, and nohint of conflict of interest. But the appointment on December 24 ofthe former governor of Dnipropetrovsk oblast Oleksandr Vilkul asDeputy Prime Minister initiated the attack on ourcompany.
"In December 2012, right after the appointmentof Mr. Vilkul as Deputy Prime Minister, we suddenly started havingproblems with the supply of rails from Azovstal. Shipments stoppedwithout explanation, and we do not have products that are alreadypaid for. Supply gap with Azovstal created serious problems for us.We soon realized that this action was not accidental. Following ahostile action against our plant was the cessation of payment foralready delivered Ukrzaliznytsia turnouts. All purchases werestopped. As of today the debt reached 91 million hryvnia. Thereasons were not explained to us. In January 2013 we wereapproached by Director General of Transinvest holding OleksandrShpylka and Volodymyr Mezentsev, General Director of Lemtrans. Thenegotiations were short - these gentlemen offered the shareholdersto sell our company. We immediately refused. For managers ofDnipropetrovsk plant it is the business of their lives, we areactively investing in the plant, developing new directions.However, once again in a rigid form we were offered to sell it, andfor a specific price - defiantly ridiculous. They say, you will doit anyway, you still have to sell. Shortly after the meetingseveral Internet sites published fraudulent material thatsupposedly one of the shareholders of the plant sold itsshares.
Immediately after our refusal, since January ofthis year, the Dnepropetrovsk plant came under siege by thisregulatory authorities. Initially the State Financial Inspectioncame to us. Then the State Tax Service began checking some pastperiods. Then - the fire inspection. Reviewers suffer, trying todig up dirt, which is not there, because we are completelylegitimate and we are already checked all the year round byeveryone.
It was made clear that the customer of this"attack" is Oleksandr Vilkul and the cause of the inspections isour intransigence in the negotiations. Vilkul fully retainedinfluence in the oblast, there are still his people working here.We turned to Shpilka saying that we are outraged by this shameless"attack", and no negotiations will take place under pressure. Wealso demanded to stop unwarranted inspections by regulatoryauthorities, to restore normal relations with the Azovstal, and toresume payments for delivered products. Shpilka replied thefollowing: "What gurantees do we have that once we stop it, youwill sell us the plant? Sell us plant and get rid of theinspections, and other problems that you may have." We understandthat the next step by Vilkul group may be bogus criminal chargesagainst the company's management.