Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Kyrgyzstan: Mina Corp condemns Kyrgyz claims it will seize control of all jet fuel supplies to US forces in Kyrgyzstan

Mina Corp strongly condemns the statement by Kyrgyz Prime Minister Almazbek Atambayev, made on Friday March 18 in Moscow during a meeting with Russian Prime Minister, Vladimir Putin, saying that the Kyrgyz government intends to seize control from Mina Corp of all jet fuel supplies to US forces in Kyrgyzstan. This is part of a continuing illegal campaign to expropriate Mina's business by the Kyrgyz authorities that came to power in April 2010.

The pretext for this latest effort to raid the company is the fabrication cited many times by Kyrgyz officials in recent months that Mina Corp was "backed" by Maksim Bakiyev, son of the former President of the Kyrgyz Republic. The US Congress conducted a thorough eight-month investigation into this allegation by the Kyrgyz authorities and concluded that there was no credible evidence to support it.

Commenting on Prime Minister Atambayev's statement, Dean Peroff of Amsterdam & Peroff, Mina Corp's international legal counsel said. "The Prime Minister is apparently not content with his government's deal with the US to install a Kyrgyz/Russian state-owned joint venture that will take over up to 50% of Mina's contract with the US Department of Defense. Now they want it all. Mina continues to be the focus of a state-sponsored corporate raid to force it out of business in Kyrgyzstan. This type of attack makes heavy use of disinformation and "black PR" to discredit a target company."

"Prime Minister Atambayev's latest statement is part of an ongoing campaign of illegal harassment and threats against Mina Corp," said William Burck of Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP, Mina Corp's Washington D.C.-based legal counsel. "The Kyrgyz government is in breach of its legal commitments to protect foreign investment from expropriation and refrain from interfering with US contractors supplying the Manas Transit Center. There are many legal avenues at the international level and in the US to hold the government accountable for this abuse of power. Mina Corp intends to vigorously pursue all of them."

"The Kyrgyz government tried and failed to mislead the US government into believing that Maxim Bakiyev was behind Mina Corp," said Dean Peroff. "Now the Prime Minister has taken the disinformation campaign from Washington to Moscow."

The state-owned joint venture model that Prime Minister Atambayev outlined to Prime Minister Putin would take over 100% of jet fuel supplies to the US military at Manas using only Russian sources. "The Kyrgyz government wants to make the Department of Defense entirely dependent on a Kyrgyz state company for meeting its jet fuel needs at Manas", said William Burck. "The US government has always insisted on diversity of fuel sources so US troops are not dependent on obtaining fuel from a single country or region. By threatening to put Mina out of business in Kyrgyzstan, Prime Minister Atambayev is on a collision course with US policy."

Note to editors: Mina Corp is part of an international group of companies headquartered in Dubai with trading operations on several continents. Mina has been a supplier of jet fuel to US forces at Manas since 2007. The company was awarded its latest contract to supply jet fuel to the Manas Transit Center in November 2010 after a full and open competition.

SOURCE Mina Corp

See also: Friday, April 16, 2010, Kyrgyzstan: Mina Corp addresses media specualtion regarding US air base contracts in Kyrgyzstan