Uzbekistan: The Tashkent Regional Economic Court in Uzbekistan has seized the assets and bank accounts of JSC Akhangarancement, a subsidiary of Russia's Eurocement Group, according to an Akhangarancement statement. The move follows the granting of a suit brought by the Uzbekistani State Competition Committee on 21 July 2014 regarding the privatisation of the cement producer in 1994, which it is investigating.
Money in bank accounts equivalent to US$177.8m and fixed assets amounting to US$19.1m were seized. An Akhangarancement source said that, despite the seizure of the accounts, the plant continues to work as usual and produce cement.
Eurocement Group claims that the State Competition Committee's claims are contrived and it plans to appeal the decision of the regional court at a higher court. Eurocement has 30 days to file an appeal. If the court upholds the first ruling, this will essentially mean the nationalisation of the asset.
Eurocement became a shareholder in Akhangarancement eight years after it was privatised, buying 75.5% of its shares on the secondary market in August 2006. Currently, Eurocement Group's stake in the enterprise is 83.9186% or 4,136,269 shares, of which Switzerland's Eurocement Holding AG is the direct owner. The rest of the shareholders are private individuals.