On April 11, 2014, the Russia’s occupation regime formed the “State Unitary Enterprise of the Republic of Crimea” “Krymenergo”, which was entrusted with “the functions of transmission and supply of electricity to consumers, as a supplier of last resort, and of operational and technological management in the electrical network” [1]. This “enterprise”, as it is stated on its website, serves the entire territory of the occupied Autonomous Republic of Crimea, except for Sevastopol, and thereby “provides electricity to more than 880 thousand household subscribers and about 28 thousand consumers – legal entities with more than 60 thousand metering points”. The post of “general director” of “Krymenergo”, at the moment, is occupied by Andrey Mikhailovich Tsurkanenko, but there is no need to rush to memorize this surname. The fact is that since 2017, the “directors” of “Krymenergo” have changed like gloves, and this trend will continue to persist. Associate Professor Andrei Chvalyuk will tell in more detail about the reasons for the “staff turnover” at “Krymenergo”.

The current “general director” hoped for “personnel growth” after the former “general director” of “Krymenergo” Victor Plakida, who has been “running the company” for over three years, was removed from his post due to a number of problems, including the failure of the “implementation of the federal target program for the development of Crimea”. The “dismissal” of the “Honored Power Engineer of Ukraine” and the former Permanent Representative of the President of Ukraine in Crimea Mr. Plakida was preceded by an “audit of the Accounts Chamber of the Republic of Crimea”, which revealed “multiple violations” in the work of the structure headed by Plakida. However, the “egregious atrocities” came out indistinct, since it was stated that “the work with legal entities was poorly structured, there were complaints from ordinary citizens”. These “compromising circumstances” were enough to start an “official investigation” against the “general director” [2].

According to the “head of Crimea’ Sergey Aksyonov, Viktor Plakida left his post because of “a problem with the organization of the work process”. “These are issues of progress in the implementation of the federal target program. Viktor Tarasovich Plakida is the official responsible for this, unfortunately, he didn’t put a finger on his finger, he just acted as an outside observer” [3]. Any layman can easily read between the lines the real reason for the “dismissal’ of Mr. Plakida – he simply did not have time to massively “successfully master” the funds of the “federal target program”.

Taking into account the fact that the trickle of “federal money” poured into the Crimea grew thinner every year, the indecisive actions of Viktor Plakida in the eyes of the Crimean collaborators’ leader were equated with a crime. The sluggish “official” had to be urgently replaced with a more nimble one, so the chair of “general director” of “Krymenergo” was taken by the “first deputy” of Viktor Plakida, Aleksey Tatarenkov. But he also did not show sufficient zeal, so he held this “position” for less than a year.

Was Victor Plakida punished for his passive observation of the “holiday of federal generosity” for the elite? Of course he was not. On October 18, 2017, exactly two weeks after his “dismissal” from “Krymenergo”, he was “appointed advisor” to Vladimir Konstantinov, “Chairman of the State Council of the Republic of Crimea” [4]. But the adventures of Plakida did not end there, since by the “Resolution of the State Council of the Republic of Crimea” dated May 27, 2020 No. 391-2/20 Viktor Tarasovich was “appointed to the post” of “auditor of the Accounts Chamber of the Republic of Crimea” [5]. The same “Accounts Chamber”, which three years ago found “many violations” in the work of the “Krymenergo” headed by him.

The collaborators are definitely not deprived of humor. If you cannot hide your financial flaws from the “checking” – go and look for the same from others. Although it cannot be ruled out that Viktor Plakida was thrust into the “Accounts Chamber” specifically for “advanced training”, so that he learned to cover up the traces of financial waste. Whatever the old partner and fellow countryman of the former Crimean speaker Anatoly Gritsenko [3], a former member of the “Party of Regions” Viktor Plakida, is currently in good standing with the “authorities” of the Crimea. In the summer of 2021, the “Presidium of the State Council of the Republic of Crimea” “awarded him the medal “For Valiant Labor”, “for many years of conscientious work and high professionalism” [6].

It seems that Viktor Plakida has learned to “quickly implement” “federal targeted programs”, but there is nothing to implement any more. As the Deputy Minister of Economic Development of the Russian Federation Sergei Nazarov recently stated, “the federal target program for the development of Crimea”, as an instrument of the Russian invaders, ceases to exist [7]. The Russia’s occupants are already reviewing the existing “plans for allocating funds”, and the feasibility of building some “planned facilities” for which “federal billions” have already been written off, but the construction of which has not yet begun in the Crimea, is being questioned.

However, let us return to the “higher energy cadres”. After the quiet “dismissal” of Aleksey Tatarenkov, allegedly “of his own free will,” Maxim Loiko, “deputy general director” of “Krymenergo”, became “temporary acting” [8]. The new “leader” was quickly removed from the “temporary” prefix and he was given full access to the main Crimean switch. It was during his “reign” that “Krymenergo” was supposed to become a “joint stock company” and receive about 9 billion rubles “from the federal budget” for the reconstruction of its allegedly “morally and physically obsolete” power grids [9]. Initially, for the “corporatization” it was planned to create a “joint venture” with the Russia’s Public Joint Stock Company “Rosseti” and to keep “controllability” by “both parties to the transaction”, the Crimean collaborators were promised to allocate 25 % plus 1 share in the new energy-monster. A little later, other figures began to sound, and they intended to divide the new “joint-stock company” already “like brothers” – fifty to fifty.

They wanted to reorganize the “unitary enterprise” into a “joint-stock company” quickly and “quietly”, which can be explained simply. As the head of “Rosseti” Oleg Budargin admitted at that time to reporters, when entering the peninsula market there were “certain risks of falling under sanctions”. For a while, the Russian invaders kept the “silence”, but they “flew” with speed. At the same time, the process of “reorganization” was greatly hampered by the “Council of Ministers of the Republic of Crimea”, which could not decide in any way what share of “Krymenergo” would go to “Rosseti” [9]. While the Crimean “authorities” were sharing the skin of the stolen electric eel, deciding who in the “newly created enterprise” would get that “control share”, “Rosseti” simply changed their minds to enter Crimea en masse.

However, most likely it was this federal holding that since 2017 controlled 51% of the assets of the “limited liability company” “Sevastopolenergo”, created by the occupiers This was indirectly confirmed by the past “governor” of Sevastopol, Dmitry Ovsyannikov, who said that “we have signed an agreement with “Rosseti”, it involves an investment of about 2 billion rubles in our power grid infrastructure” [9].

We admit that “Rosseti” still want to consolidate “Krymenergo”, but they are looking for a way to hide their participation in this business through laying firms, offshore companies and so on. No wonder the “head of Crimea” Sergey Aksyonov, subsequently, refused to name the company that will become the “second shareholder” of the “joint-stock company” “Krymenergo”, explaining this by the sanctions regime. “The head of Crimea”, was also associated the delay in the “corporatization” of “Krymenergo”, with the “registration of all objects and land plots of the company” [10]. Why was the question of “accounting assets” raised for the first time only four years after the “foundation” of “Krymenergo”? Precisely because the future “co-owner” wanted to know: why after the “nationalization”, that was the theft of all the Ukrainian company’s PJSC “DTEK Krymenergo” Crimea-located property, these “fiefs” and “lands” were not included in the “assets” of “Krymenergo”, but they were quickly rewritten to some local feudal lords.

In the turbulent months of the beginning of the Russia’s occupation, of the so-called “Crimean spring”, the property of the Crimean enterprises of the communal sector was massively “nationalized” by the aggressor-controlled structures, and, according to their further “official reports”, allegedly it “was recorded in full on the balance sheet” of the newly appeared “state unitary enterprises”. But this was far from the reality. Our Association has already written about how a part of such property was “lost somewhere” in the process of “putting on the balance sheet” [11]. Some assets were then “returned” back to the “unitary enterprise” “voluntarily-compulsorily” or through “confiscation by court decision”. But the Russia’s invaders could no longer “return to the ownership of the Republic of Crimea” a significant part of the plundered property of the Ukraine’s state, autonomy, territorial communities and public structures.

There is elementary evidence for this. The press service of “DTEK” claims that the value of its “nationalized” Crimean assets is more than 500 million US dollars [12]. At the current exchange rate, this is about 37.5 billion rubles, that is, 13.5 times more than the entire “authorized fund” of “Krymenergo”, declared by the Russian invaders. You do not need to have deep analysis skills to compare the list of “nationalized” Crimean assets of “DTEK”, indicated in the company’s claims and “the list of immovable and movable property transferred to federal ownership, state-owned by the Republic of Crimea” specified in the prescript of the Russian government dated February 28, 2019 No. 340-r [13]. We add that according to this order, “all property” of “Krymenergo” was to “be taken into federal ownership”, and after “the implementation of certain measures” was “transferred to the joint-stock company “Krymenergo” for free use”.

The laws of business and the rules for the creation of joint stock companies have a long history. Periodically, certain precedents and deviations from the established canons occurred in it, but not as much as the “head of Crimea” imagined in his dreams. At the time of “the decision was made to establish the joint-stock company “Krymenergo”, “the company’s annual revenue” was 12.76 billion rubles, and the “net profit” was 225 million rubles. No adequate businessman will invest 9 billion rubles in an “enterprise”, whose “statutory fund” is 2756 million rubles, and the “net profit” falls annually. For example, in 2020, “Krymenergo” received less than 15 million rubles of “profit” [14]. All this leads us to the simple idea that the “reorganization” of “Krymenergo” is by no means an economic basis. This process was initiated by political interests, as well as corruption or, most likely, their synergy.

Initially, the Russia’s invaders planned to invest in the construction of 1,500 kilometers of power grids as part of the militarization of the peninsula. They promised to reconstruct the “southern transit” – 110 kilovolt power lines along the Southern coast of Crimea, as well as modernize emergency systems, which, as a result, “should have increased the capacity of networks, the capacity of substations and their reliability” [15]. But what prevented them from “allocating funds” directly? Why was a more complex “reorganization” scheme needed? And here corruption interest is already emerging. If the “funds were allocated”, as it was planned, within the framework of the “federal target program” “Social and economic development of the Republic of Crimea and the city of Sevastopol until 2020”, then the current “general director” of “Krymenergo” would collect all the cream, or rather it will be the benefit of the person who arranged for him for this “position”.

But officials from the Russian government also wanted to make money, and therefore it was planned to create a “two-headed” “joint-stock company”. In which one “partner” would be responsible for approving the most beneficial “tenders” in terms of kickbacks, and the other would draw inflated amounts in “invoices” for the installation of these poles, wires, emergency systems purchased from the “right-selected” people. Let us remind you that a detailed analysis of the scheme of enrichment of the invaders in “tenders policy” has already been described by our Association [16]. But something did not go according to plan, so “Krymenergo” is still a “state unitary enterprise”, and the promised “federal investments” are still in the accounts of the Russian federal treasury.

In March 2020, Maxim Loiko, who did not justify trust, was removed from the post of General Director, and not another “deputy” from the “line of succession to the electric throne” was appointed to act, but a person from the outside. The new “executive” was Vitaly Okunev, the former deputy general director for general issues of the joint-stock company “Interregional Distribution Grid Company of the Urals”, which is part of “Rosseti”. It is difficult to understand whether this top manager was imposed on the “head of Crimea” strictly from above, or in this way Aksyonov wanted to complete the purge of “Krymenergo” from certain “crypto-Ukrainians” he had begun [17].

We are nevertheless inclined to think that Vitaly Okunev became the “overseer” from “Rosseti” and it was he who had to study the local “cuisine” from the inside, provide an opinion on the “expediency of future reorganization and allocation of investments”. This is indicated by the fact that Mr. Okunev became the only one from a series of his predecessors who was not “fired” with a scandal or quietly released “on his own”, but even left “with oral gratitude” “for the work done” from the “Deputy Prime Minister Republic of Crimea” [18]. The “temporary overseer” left six months after the “vocation” and the “forge of personnel” in “Krymenergo”, again “started working in its regular mode” after his departure.

On October 14, 2020, “by order of the Deputy Minister of the Ministry of Fuel and Energy of the Republic of Crimea”, Igor Vladimirovich Korin, the former “Deputy General Director of Krymenergo” for investments, was appointed the “General Director” of “Krymenergo” [19]. Igor Korin so well managed to realize his skills in “mastering” the “federal investments” poured into the militarization of the Crimean energy sector on an especially large scale, that he was taken away “for promotion” in less than a year. The corresponding “decree of the head of the Republic” said “to appoint Igor Korin to the public office of the Republic of Crimea – Minister of Fuel and Energy for the term of office of the head of Crimea” [20]. Who got the vacant seat of the “chief power engineer”? Of course, the next “deputy” – Andrey Tsurkanenko.

In his resume [21] “candidate for the position of chief engineer”, this young but promising “head of the diagnostics, isolation and overvoltage protection service” of “Krymenergo” did not just indicate that his “main job responsibilities” included “formation of investment programs in the direction”. He wanted to be noticed and to be allowed to the bottomless (as it seemed to all collaborators at that time), well of “federal investments”. The future “general director” at that time already had a higher education as an electrical engineer, but in order to improve his skills in the formation of investment programs, Andrei Tsurkanenko in 2014 entered the “Tavrichesky Academy of the Vernadsky Crimean Federal University”. We do not know whether he received the coveted specialty “Manister of Economics” (there is no mistake, this is exactly what is indicated in his resume) [21].

But we found that in 2017, the Andrei Tsurkanenko’s ambitions grew, and he began to look for the position of the head of an energy enterprise, for which he was ready to move from Krasnodar, where his family lived at that time, to any other city [22]. But “nobody did not have to go anywhere” and Andrey Tsurkanenko, a close friend of the ex-deputy “general director” of “Krymenergo” Konstantin Laenko, who had not previously thought of sharing kickbacks in time [23; 24], became himself a “big boss”. Well, it is not excluded that the “manistr of the economy” will turn out to be another “Crimean minister” or even a new “proffessor”.

In the meantime, “Krymenergo” shows losses, it “does not work well in collecting debts from electricity consumers” and it consistently “receives comments on the results of inspections” [25]. The question of its transformation into a “joint stock company” and “allocation of large investments” to Crimean energetic networks is no longer raised. In 2021, “in order to pay off wage arrears to its employees”, “the enterprise was forced to take out a loan” at 9.5% per annum from the “Rossiya” bank [26]. Time will tell whether this is another scheme for making money on the Crimean population or the “authorities of the Republic” are planning to bring “Krymenergo” to “bankruptcy” and “change its name”. We will continue to monitor the situation around “Krymenergo” and inform our readers about it.

Sources:

1. https://crimea-energy.ru/

2. https://iz.ru/654131/2017-10-04/vlasti-krym-sniali-s-dolzhnosti-direktora-krymenergo-iz-za-narushenii

3. https://regnum.ru/news/economy/2330125.html

4. https://rus.team/people/plakida-viktor-tarasovich

5. http://sp-rc. ru/о-сп-рк/история-создания/

6. http://crimea.gov.ru/act/19039

7. https://rg.ru/2021/12/28/reg-ufo/sergej-nazarov-gosprogramma-razvitiia-kryma-i-sevastopolia-zamenit-dejstvuiushchuiu-fcp.html

8. https://primechaniya.ru/sevastopol/novosti/direktor-gup-krymenergo-podal-v-otstavku/

9. http://stroy-krim.org/encyclopedia/news/krymenergo-poluchit-bolee-9-mlrd-rubley-iz-byudzheta-posle-togo-kak-stanet

10. https://ria.ru/20180723/1525125011.html

11. https://arc.construction/21261?lang=uk

12. https://ru.krymr.com/a/28426109.html

13. https://rulaws.ru/goverment/Rasporyazhenie-Pravitelstva-RF-ot-28.02.2019-N-340-r/

14. https://tassbiz.ru/company/profile/5216025

15. https://www.vedomosti.ru/business/news/2017/09/22/734943-krimenergo-rossetei

16. https://arc.construction/22490?lang=uk

17. https://primechaniya.ru/sevastopol/stati/aksenov-nashel-u-sebya-v-podchinenii-celuyu-komandu-moshennikov-s-ukrainy/

18. https://rk.gov.ru/ru/article/show/9095

19. https://crimea-energy.ru/about/news/4459-generalnym-direktorom-gup-rk-krymenergo-naznachen-korin-igor-vladimirovich

20. https://crimea-news.com/society/2021/08/05/822902.html

21. https://simferopol.careerist.ru/resume/tsurkanenko-andrey-1292665.html

22. https://www.trud.com/search/item/item_id/51289426/site_id/4211/show/cv/query/руководитель+предприятия/region/krasnodar.html

23. https://napisat-pismo-gubernatoru.ru/respublika-krym/krymenergo-korrumpirovannoe-predpriyatie-kryma

24. https://ruinformer.com/page/ugolovnoe-delo-v-otnoshenii-top-menedzherov-krymenergo-mozhet-popolnitsja-eshhjo-figurantami

25. https://star-pro.ru/proverka-kontragenta/organization/1149102003423

26. https://crimea.octagon.media/ekonomika/_krymenergo_vedut_k_bankrotstvu.html