The Minister of Justice: Rinat Akhmetov no longer fits the definition of an oligarch

Kostia Andreikovets

The Minister of Justice, Denys Maliuska, said that billionaire Rinat Akhmetov no longer fits the definition of an oligarch, as he has left the media business, and his business partner Vadym Novinsky has completed the mandate of the Peopleʼs Deputy.

He told about this during the OPORA.Live discussion.

"Mr. Novinsky was a direct link to recognize Mr. Akhmetov as an oligarch. Because they are business partners, and Mr. Novinsky, as a Member of Parliament, is a political figure. Therefore, the refusal of the mandate removed Mr. Akhmetovʼs direct connection with the parliament and removed the most obvious sign of participation in political life for Mr. Akhmetov," the minister said.

At the same time, Maliuska suggested that Akhmetov probably gave up his media not completely.

"This is my subjective opinion, I am not ready to say that it is so, but it seems that legally it is a "the foot in the door" in order not to completely close the legal mechanisms of returning to business," the minister explained.

  • On July 11, 2022, Rinat Akhmetov announced that he was leaving the media business. "Media Group Ukraine" renounced all broadcast and satellite television licenses and print media licenses in Ukraine in favor of the state. The online media of Moscow State University are also not working. Rinat Akhmetovʼs media holding "Media Group Ukraine" unites the channels "Ukraina", "Ukraina 24", "Football 1/2/3", NLO TV, multimedia platform "Sohodni", "News Group Ukraine" and others.
  • On September 23, 2021, the Verkhovna Rada (the Ukrainian Parliament) adopted a draft law on deoligarchization. The document establishes a number of rules for those who will be included in the register of oligarchs: they will not be able to finance parties, participate in privatization, and will be required to submit an electronic declaration. All officials will have to submit a declaration of contacts if they have communication with the oligarch. If they do not submit such a declaration, they are threatened with dismissal.
  • An oligarch can be recognized as a person who participates in political life, has significant influence on mass media, is the beneficiary of a monopoly and has assets worth more than 1 million living wages (approximately 2.5 billion UAH).
  • The National Security and Defense Council has already launched a system for monitoring oligarchs.