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Oligarch's company begins Jersey exit

Oligarch's company begins Jersey exit

Thursday 27 December 2018

Oligarch's company begins Jersey exit


A Jersey-based company owned by a Russian billionaire, who recently faced trial over an alleged armed takeover of a rival’s factory, has begun the process to officially pull out of the island.

Oleg Deripaska’s EN+ Group PLC – the parent company of the world’s second largest aluminium provider, Rusal - is currently incorporated in Jersey.

But on Monday (24 December) its board gave notice that it would be applying to the Jersey Financial Services Commission to move to Russia.

The application comes after a turbulent few months for the company after it was hit by sanctions from Trump’s government in April

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Pictured: Mr Deripaska has been linked with Putin.

Mr Deripaska and his Jersey-registered business ventures – all of which were previously used by Jersey Finance to promote the island’s links with Russia – were blacklisted by the US Treasury amid accusations against the billionaire of “malign activities”.

Shares in the companies began to nosedive leading to large-scale changes in their control structures in a bid to lift the sanctions and keep them afloat.

The latest of those has involved Deripaska significantly reducing his stake, with his share in EN+ reducing from around 70% to less then half as the company makes moves to change its headquarters from Jersey to Russia. 

It is unknown what EN+’s departure could mean for the island at this stage. 

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Pictured: Mr Deripaska's company, Rusal, previously featured in a promotional Jersey Finance brochure.

The news of Mr Deripaska’s company’s moves to exit Jersey come just weeks after he was cross-examined during a trial over whether he ordered armed men to seize control of a Moscow textile factory during a feud with a business partner-turned-rival.

It also comes shortly after another island-linked oligarch, Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich was placed on a UK intelligence ‘watch list’ of Putin-linked Russians.

He was granted high-value residency in Jersey earlier this year – a move that raised several eyebrows after it emerged that he had already been refused by Switzerland on the grounds of being a security risk. 

Responding to increasing global – and local – scrutiny of the nation and its high-profile citizens, Express understands that Jersey businesses are now looking to scale back their activities with Russia.

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Pictured: EN+ gave notice that it will apply to the JFSC for continuance as a company in Russia.

States-backed Jersey Finance, whose aim is to attract business to the island, has now stopped circulating promotional materials demonstrating Jersey’s connection to the country, and no longer has pages on its website dedicated to the topic. 

A promotional brochure featuring Rusal, which was published in 2014 has also been taken down.

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