Donbass republics nationalize Ukrainian factories

From Fort Russ

March 1, 2017 – Fort Russ News –
RIA Novosti – translated, edited by J. Arnoldski –
As of today, March 1st, external management will be introduced at all unregistered Ukrainian enterprises on the territory of the Donetsk and Lugansk People’s Republic. This decision was taken by the leaders of the republics in response to the transport blockade of Donbass.
In late January, a group of veterans of the military operation in Donbass, including deputies of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine, blocked freight rail traffic from the Donbass republics at several points. The “blockaders” stated that in their opinion any trade with the self-proclaimed republics is illegal. The blockade has led to shortages of anthracite coal which is mined in the areas of Donbass uncontrolled by Kiev. In connection with this, Ukrainian authorities have been compelled to introduce emergency measures in the energy sector with the aim of saving resources. A number of industrial enterprises have had to stop production.
On Monday, February 27th, the heads of the LPR and DPR announced that the republics would cease coal deliveries to Kiev if the railway blockade continues. In addition, they promised that if by midnight of March 1st the blockade is not lifted, then external management will be introduced at all enterprises under Ukrainian jurisdiction working in the DPR and LPR.
Due to the transport blockade, a number of large enterprises around the frontline in Donbass have ceased production. Among them are the Enakievsky metallurgical factory in the DPR and the Krasnodonugol company in the LPR. Both of these factories are part of the Metinvest group belonging to Ukrainian oligarch Rinat Akhmetov. 
The leader of the DPR, Alexander Zakharchenko, had warned at a press conference: “The Enakievsky metallurgical plant has ceased working, and some other companies need to be jumpstarted. If they do not register themselves by Wednesday, then they will all come under our complete control. This also includes stadiums and hotels.”
During emergency sessions of the DPR and LPR parliaments on Monday, the relevant amendments to legislation were adopted which allow for external control to be imposed on Ukrainian enterprises that are not registered on the territory of the republics by March 1st.
The DPR and LPR have announced the creation of a special headquarters for controlling Ukrainian enterprises’ transition to external management. The LPR has emphasized that the employees of these enterprises will keep their jobs.
The chairman of the LPR’s People’s Council, Vladimir Degtyarenko, said: “The established headquarters intends not to merely keep enterprises ‘afloat,’ but to contribute to their further development and reorientation towards Russia.”….
Representatives of Donbass have explained that this decision on “nationalizing” Ukrainian enterprises was necessary. The primary task is resuming their work and saving jobs. But this, according to DPR head Alexander Zakharchenko, will take about two months.
“In the short term we will have to rebuild industry and change markets. The main task is ensuring the smooth operation of enterprises and salaries and work for the workers of these enterprises,” Zakharchenko said.
The Ministry of Industry and Trade of the DPR has stressed that there can be no doubts that the enterprises will be successfully reoriented from the Ukrainian market to markets in the Russian Federation and other countries. In addition, the transfer of all enterprises of non-residents to republican jurisdiction only broadens the foreign trade ties of the DPR. 
“Despite difficulties with the political recognition of the republic, our enterprises are quite successfully working with countries in the near and far abroad. For already more than two years, our manufactures have essentially begun the process of withdrawing from Ukrainian markets in favor of other countries. Both the state and business circles have some experience in this,” the acting industry and trade minister, Aleksey Granovsky, affirmed.
Granovsky added that the republic is now exporting more than 50 types of goods among including from light industry, food products, chemical and pharmaceutical industries, and metallurgy. 
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