Kyiv Commercial Court Suspends Hearing in Case Between NBU and Kolomoiskiy
The National Bank of Ukraine is trying to prevent Kolomoiskiy from preventing a trial on a case the NBU filed in Geneva, Switzerland
Photo from Ukrinform-UATV
Kyiv Economic Court suspended the hearing on Ihor Kolomoiskiy’s claim against National Bank of Ukraine [NBU] regarding five loans, taken by PrivatBank in 2008-20014 in the total amount of ₴9.2 billion, Ukrinform reported on May 31, 2019.
According to the article, the Court decided to suspend the hearing until June 7, 2019 because the NBU has to provide additional documents related to the lawsuit.
The press service of the National Bank of Ukraine released a statement about the lawsuit saying that it is Kolomoiskiy’s attempt to avoid payment for the NBU claim against him in Geneva.
The NBU release said that on December 19, 2018, the national regulator sued Kolomoiskiy in the First Instance of the Court of the Republic and the Canton of Geneva, Switzerland, one of the locations where Kolomoisky declares residency, in an attempt to seize Kolomoiskiy’s Geneva assets totaling in value to ₴6.64 billion. This would be a way to secure the recovery of loans, taken by PrivatBank in previous years and guaranteed by Kolomoiskiy himself in 2016 when the NBU refinanced these loans.
The NBU release also stated, that on May 20, 2019, Kyiv District Court had already issued a ruling in favor of Kolomoiskiy as a claimant in a similar lawsuit, canceling the validity of the guarantee agreements for the loans in a total amount of ₴9.2 billion.
According to the press release, such a practice is a violation of the estoppel principle, which is widely used in the practice of the Supreme Court of Ukraine regarding similar cases. This principle precludes a person from an assertion contrary to previous statements or going back from pervious actions.
The Kyiv Commercial Court has confirmed the information about five new claims filed by Kolomiskiy against NBU.
In December 2016, after the proposal of the National Bank of Ukraine and major shareholders of PrivatBank, Ihor Kolomoisky and Hennadiy Bogoliubov, the Government of Ukraine approved the decision to nationalize the largest financial institution in the Ukrainian market at that time.
Subsequently, the National Bank of Ukraine spent more than ₴155 billion ($5.85 billion at the current exchange rate) on its capitalization, a significant part of the Ukrainian State budget in 2018. As the NBU has stated, the nationalization of PrivatBank caused losses of at least $5.5 billion.
On April 18, 2019, the Kyiv District Administrative Court ruled the nationalization of PrivatBank illegal. The next day, the court canceled the decision of the NBU on December 13, 2016, which defined a list of individuals and legal entities associated with the bank. On April 20, 2019, the Kyiv District Court approved a decision to terminate the personal bailout agreement of Ihor Kolomoiskiy on refinancing loans with PrivatBank in the amount of ₴9.2 billion received prior to its nationalization.