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Sistema transfers $347.6 mln to Bashneft as part of amicable agreement

December 28, 2017, 20:26 UTC+3 MOSCOW

Earlier the Arbitration Court of Bashkortostan approved a long-awaited amicable deal between Russian oil major Rosneft and the investment giant Sistema

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MOSCOW, December 28. /TASS/. Sistema-Invest, subsidiary of investment giant Sistema, transferred the first payment of 20 bln rubles ($347.6 mln) to Bashneft in the framework of an amicable agreement with Rosneft and Bashneft, Sistema representative Sergey Kopytov told TASS.

"Yes, the payment was made," he said, adding that the remaining payments under the amicable agreement will be carried out directly by Sistema.

Earlier, the Arbitration Court of Bashkortostan approved a long-awaited amicable deal between Russian oil major Rosneft and the investment giant Sistema over the dispute on the reorganization of Bashneft and closed the proceedings.

Representatives from Rosneft, Bashneft, Sistema, Sistema-Invest and the Bashkortostan Ministry of Property (owns 25% plus one share in Bashneft) asked the court to satisfy a joint statement on the amicable agreement. Under its terms, the respondents are to reimburse Bashneft for damages of 100 bln rubles ($1.73 bln). Final settlements must be wrapped up before March 30, 2018. Under the terms of the deal, Rosneft and Sistema, after repaying the debt, pledge to abandon any further mutual claims.

In accordance with the agreement, Sistema will pay Bashneft 80 bln rubles ($1.38 bln), while Sistema-Invest will shell out 20 bln rubles ($346.55 mln). "The defendant undertakes to reimburse Bashneft for damages in the amount of 100 bln rubles ($1.73 bln), including 80 bln rubles ($1.38 bln) to be paid by Sistema, 20 bln rubles ($346.55 mln) by Sistema-Invest," the judge said.

Earlier, the shares of a number of assets belonging to Sistema were frozen - including mobile operator MTS, a network of private medical clinics Medsi, the Bashkir Electric Grid Company (BPGC), Detsky Mir, the agroholding Steppe, MTS Bank and others. The court forbade Sistema to dispose this property and receive income from the frozen assets. The amicable agreement includes a gradual lifting of the restrictions.

The parties will submit a joint statement to the Federal Bailiffs Service about partially unfreezing Sistema’s assets, in particular, the shares of Detsky Mir and BPGC. The Bashkortostan Arbitration Court will file an application to unfreeze 31.76% of MTS shares.

The Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF) Kirill Dmitriev said it will provide a loan of 40 bln rubles ($659.46 mln) to Sistema for a period of 6 months against pledge of Detsky Mir and BPGC. Sistema owns 90.47% of the shares in BPGC and 52.09% in Detsky Mir.

According to the first lawsuit filed by Rosneft and Bashneft against Sistema, the investment corporation’s frozen assets included a 31.76% stake in MTS, 100% in private medical clinics network Medsi and a 90.47% share in BPGC.

According to the second lawsuit, the 52.09% stake in Detsky Mir, the 71.87% stake in MTS Bank, the 90.5% share in Steppe, the 98.78% stake in Leader Invest and 100% in Sistema Telecom belonging to Sistema were all frozen.

Rosneft agreed on reducing the amount of claims to Sistema and Sistema-Invest from 136.3 bln rubles ($2.3 bln) to 100 bln rubles ($1.73 bln), as it received information about Sistema’s possible bankruptcy, if the full amount were recovered, Rosneft Spokesman Mikhail Leontyev told TASS earlier.

TASS reported earlier that Sistema was going to raise funds to compensate Bashneft’s losses with the assistance of Sberbank and the Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF), which since November 29 has been an intermediary in the dispute between the companies.

In August, the Bashkortostan Arbitration Court partially satisfied Rosneft’s claim against Sistema, having decided in favor of recovering 136.3 bln rubles ($2.3 bln) from the investment giant. However, the parties appealed. Rosneft insisted on full satisfaction of its claims at 170.6 bln rubles ($2.9 bln). Such losses, according to Rosneft, were due to the reorganization of Bashneft’s assets by Sistema in 2014.

On December 18, the Chelyabinsk Arbitration Court of Appeal upheld the decision of the Bashkortostan Arbitration Court.

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