‘Thanks to Sytnik, the State recovered a mere UAH 234 million from selling off VAB Bank’s assets instead of UAH 8 billion’, - says Oleg Bakhmatyuk.

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I would like to congratulate Mr. Sytnik and his entire ‘pirate crew’ on a ‘great’ victory they scored yesterday. Yesterday, the Deposit Guarantee Fund issued a press release, in which it stated that it had sold all the assets of VAB Bank for UAH 234 million.  As a shareholder, I’ve written letters two years ago and very recently offering a settlement worth UAH 8 billion. Instead, the government only recovered a mere UAH 234 million.

The situation around Ukrlandfarming and Avangard and me as former owner of the bank who has been consistently pursuing a constructive approach offering the government a lot more than could be salvaged from dumping the bank’s assets at dirt-cheap prices, is clearly not in the public interest. I keep calling on all stakeholders: save the company, capable of contributing billions in taxes, employing 27 thousand Ukrainians and paying billions in wages, and the state will recover 40 times more than it collected from auctioning off those assets. But NABU Director Sytnik and those helping him destroy the company are not interested in getting more for the state. All they’re interested in is their personal PR and satisfying their own ambitions.  I’m confident that sooner or later they will be held accountable for the shortfall, when it is calculated, between what the government could have recovered and what it actually did.

The experience of the US and European countries proves that in such critical situations an amicable settlement through negotiation between the state and a company has yielded substantially more for the government while enabling the company to continue in business. In particular, if the company is a key player in Ukraine’s economy. But those people who are trying to destroy the company are not interested in creating value. Those people consume enormous public funds while destroying those generating them. They are only interested in personal PR and satisfying their own ambitions. I believe that those people must be held accountable for their actions, maybe not today, because they will not stay in their jobs forever.  

My company and I have always believed that it is in the best interest of the state to conduct a constructive conversation at the negotiating table and work out an amicable settlement. We need to increase government revenue, not destroy the economy. Do you kill the goose that lays the golden egg?  Do you kill a company being one of the largest taxpayers and proudly representing Ukraine in international market as one of its top exporters? Those are the questions that must be answered by Ukraine’s leadership that has pledged to promote Ukraine’s economic growth but fell prey to the ambitions of a handful of people pursuing destructive ends and actions.