The destiny of the Nikolaev international airport any more is one year one of the most popular hits of the local press. Especially often it "began to sound" after the Nikolaev regional council made the decision on its privatization.
This material published on "Observer" on July 10, introduces a little new sounding therefore we offer it (with some reductions and additions) to our readers in this subject.
Season of hunting for the airports
With approach of spring of 2008 Yulia Timoshenko unexpectedly for many developed rough activity on one front of political and economic opposition. This time the Ukrainian airports became object of its close attention.
Till this day the most part of extensive economy of the dead of "Aeroflot" is in municipal property of local councils. These councils in full accordance with the Law of Ukraine "About local government" dispose of property belonging to them, and have the right to resolve issues of expediency of full or partial privatization of the specified airports. Each airport has the certain infrastructure including vzletno - landing strips, platforms for parking of planes, passenger terminals, hotels, office buildings, automobile parkings, etc. But except all aforesaid, each airport has a delicious makeweight in the form of many hectares of the earth the part from which belongs to a so-called exclusion zone, and on part systems of safety of airfields, navigation beacons and many other things settle down. Considering that all airports were under construction at the time of the USSR when the earth was state, it is possible to understand that territories under airfields were taken away in a big way, and of any economy of the earth anybody then didn't think.
It is natural that, having received all completeness of the premier power, Tymoshenko couldn't reconcile to a situation when such wealth is in hands of "municipal princelings". Aggravated a situation that fact that the majority of the airports interesting by Tymoshenko, are under authority of local councils the deputy majority in which is created without BYuT fraction participation.For anybody not a secret that in Odessa, Donetsk, Kharkov, Dnepropetrovsk, to the Crimea, Nikolaev, and now and in Kiev, BYuT positions, to put it mildly, leave much to be desired. Thereof to acquire the decisions necessary to Tymoshenko on transfer the property rights or privatizations of the airports in favor of relatives to it structures, it was almost not real.
And Tymoshenko started acting, and to work with cynicism inherent in it and aggressiveness. Attack was begun in two weeks, after "accession" of Lady Yu in Cabinet of Ministers. Already on January 14 this year in one of the interviews she declared: "It is necessary to develop urgently the bill which will regulate procedure of privatization of the airports, their systems of safety, and also vzletno - landing strips". And on March 5, 2008 the Concept of the target state program of development of the airports the next 12 years according to which 29 largest airports of the country have to be urgently nationalized (i.e. to turn into state property) was approved. Only after that cargo and passenger terminals, objects of providing and other elements of land infrastructure can be transferred by aviation fuel to private hands at "open auctions". Such here temporary and intermediate nationalization.
How here not to remember Sharikov who liked to speak - "everything to select and to divide". Actually, for this purpose also it is necessary to nationalize all airport economy at first. Very important for the prime minister that auctions carried out not local councils, and the government which will possess by then the property right to the airports. Understanding it, and also without wishing to miss from the hands a direct profit from privatization of these "titbits", local councils unambiguously refused to transfer the airports to state property.
Refusal didn't discourage Yulia Vladimirovna. In a stock it had a confidential weapon, "trump card" - "Euro-2012". The matter is that according to the experts, the need for investments for preparation of the main and reserve airports for Euro makes: for Borispol - 3000 million hryvnias, Zhulyan - 355 million, Kharkov - 436, Donetsk - 381, Dnepropetrovsk - 464 and Odessa - 755 million hryvnias.
Earlier financing of development of the airports was carried out as from local, and state budgets.But to force local authorities to make the decision necessary to Tymoshenko, the norm according to which of the state budget it was offered to finance development and the maintenance of only those airports which are in state property was brought in the marked concept. And the others were obliged to be financed from the municipal budget, naturally local councils of such sums from the assets couldn't allocate.
In addition there was a resolution of Cabinet of Ministers of May 21, 2008 which provided transfer of 1 008 million the hryvnias allocated for reconstruction of the airports in the current year, to the state airports "Lviv" and "Borispol", and also municipal "Donetsk" and "Zhulyana" (under an indispensable condition of transfer of these airfields in state property). And the part of local councils was given on favor of the prime minister.
The first Donetsk fell. On April 22 the regional council made the decision on transfer vzletno - a landing strip of the municipal enterprise "The international airport "Donetsk" to the state. Decisive factor was that from state treasury this year is planned to allocate the 7th 33,3 million hryvnias for construction and Donetsk airport reconstruction. This sum almost exceeds the volume of investment necessary for the enterprise for preparation for Euro-2012 twice. In only a few weeks beyond Donetsk Kharkov capitulated. In May local authorities granted permission for transfer of airfield to state property. On - visible, the City Council and the tenant of the airport the JSC New Sistems AM company also received guarantees of allocation of budgetary funds for development of airfield infrastructure.
But not all local councils "laid down arms" and were given Tymoshenko. Kiev ("Zhulyana's" airport), Odessa and Dnepropetrovsk refused to accept its offer. Also the Rivnensky regional council which has made the decision followed their example that the municipal enterprise "Rivne's International Airport" will be offered this year for sale. The Nikolaev City Council adheres to the same position also.
As a whole, news about holding the European championship in Ukraine led to that for the enterprises at once there were strategic investors. And local authorities had an opportunity effectively to dispose of municipal property, without sharing thus with the state or the government.
Besides all programs of private investment of the airports on which local councils agree uncontrollable Tymoshenko, in particular Odessa, don't provide transfer of the property right to the airports to someone.At most, on what they go, this joint using object together with the investor or concession. Naturally, such "obstinacy" of local authorities suits representatives of the large capital, seeking to catch the airports in the property a little.
And here it is worth thinking of that and who exactly can be interested in purchase of the Ukrainian airports. Who is so mighty, what could lobby the program (the program, instead of separate actions) Cabinet of Ministers to select aviation economy from municipal property of pig-headed councils? Or, if is more exact who has so powerful leverage on the prime minister, what doesn't doubt positive result for itself further privatization auctions on these airports?
If to analyse what of the foreign companies was most actively interested in purchase of the Ukrainian airports for the last years, develops rather interesting picture. At the end of September, 2007, the Basic Element group belonging to the Russian magnate Oleg Deripaska, declared readiness to enclose 200 million euros in development of the international airport "Odessa", having bought it at privatization competition at the price of 10-50 million dollars, or having received in concession for the term of not less than 50 years. "Basic Element" was refused as the offer didn't correspond to conditions of competition on reconstruction of the international airport "Odessa", the approved executive committee of the Odessa City Council. One of the reasons, and perhaps, main, is that fact that in property of "Basic Element" there are airports of Sochi competing with the Odessa air port, Gelendzhik, Krasnodar and Anapa, and according to tender conditions, the applicant can't have the airports which are competitors Odessa or in property, possession or management can compete with it in the future, besides the sum of investments has to be not less than 250 million hryvnias.
Reference of "Observer": "Basic Element" is founded in 1997 (till 2001 "The Siberian aluminum" was called). Owns the Russian and foreign assets in an energy drink, mechanical engineering, development, aviation and a mining industry, financial and construction sectors. Assets the power group "RUSAL", "EuroSibEnergo", the Joint oil group, CEAC Holdings) are among, machine-building holding "Russian Cars" (GAS, "Aviakor-Aircraft Factory", "Abakanvagonmash"), Basic Element Finance finance company ("Ingosstrakh", bank "Soyuz", "Element Leasing", NPF "Society";, Ingosstrakh — Investments management company), resource holding Element Resources ("Soyuzmetallresurs", "Kontinental Management", "Zhanna Zhyldyz Gold", Batu Mining). Also "Bazel" owns the construction and developer companies "Glavstroy", "BaselCement", "Altius Development", "Aremeks", the airports in Sochi, Krasnodar, Anapa, Gelendzhik, Airlines of Kuban airline. The consolidated revenue of the enterprises of group in 2006 - more than $18 billion, the cost of assets - about $23 billion. About 300 thousand employees work at the Bazela enterprises. The owner of holding - Oleg Deripaska.
Despite defeat in Odessa, Deripaska made a certain progress in Kharkov. In February, 2008 deputies of the City Council made the decision to sign the AKP complete property complex lease contract "The international airport "Kharkov" for a period of 49 years between the city and JSC New Sistems AM, affiliated with DCH group of Alexander Yaroslavsky. Thus both itself Yaroslavl and its DCH group are controlled by Oleg Deripaska and his holding "Basic Element".
Besides, Deripaska doesn't hide that has direct influence on Tymoshenko. On the eve of parliamentary elections in March, 2007 the billionaire gave interview to the Russian edition "Time of Eurasia". The material was printed for limited group of the oligarchs involved in policy. Some copies got to Ukraine, and then to the Internet. From - for too sharp and broad statements about the Central Asian republics and Ukraine in particular long time of interview considered as a forgery. However at the beginning of this year it published on the official site of National council on corporate governance of Russia that automatically confirmed authenticity of this interview. However, on the Internet - a site it stayed only two weeks. Most likely, interviews removed according to the direct indication of the Kremlin from - for a resonance which it caused in the Russian press.
Here Deripasko's some statements about Tymoshenko, Yanukovych and Yushchenko:
"Why - that mistakenly consider that Russia wanted to impose to Ukraine Victor Yanukovych as the president. We, of course, finance it, but at all for the purpose of imposing to Ukraine. We look for in the republic of adequate managers, and Yanukovych - only one of possible candidates".
"Yushchenko gradually becomes ridiculous. Especially after we agreed with Yulia Timoshenko. It, by the way, quite adequate and professional politician, helped us on Nikolaevsk aluminous combine.Now Yushchenko needs to do nothing how to drive about across Europe and to ask about support. The result of its efforts is simply ridiculous - us toady from Europe, and every day more and more. Time - all interesting factories will come, all transport of Ukraine will be ours. That's for sure. Here so game" becomes.
About Tymoshenko and Deripasko's secret and obvious meetings for a long time are whispered both in Kiev, and in Moscow. And about their strategic arrangements and secret arrangement on destiny of the Ukrainian airports with might and main gossip in the okolooligarkhicheskikh circles.
As ancient Romans spoke, "if you want to understand who in something is guilty, look for the one to whom it is favorable". In our case we already know and why it was favorable to whom to lobby transfer of the airports to state property. And even it is known, only who as a result from it will win. Well, and who will lose - will show the future.
From themselves we will add that interest to OKP "The international airport "Nikolaev" which pervostateynykh of objects of preparation to "Euro-2012" doesn't enter the list, is quite reasonable: the state vzletno - a landing strip of the Odessa airport is in critical condition, and those 2-3 years while it will be reconstructed, the logistics assumes to transfer all Odessa flights to Nikolaev. So, we too in a holder.