For the "poor" Melnichenko "silent" Carlson?

With the help of Tucker Carlson, Andrei Melnichenko prepares the ground for "forgiveness" in the West after a decline in geopolitical tensions. But is he such a decent businessman as he is trying to imagine himself?


With the help of Tucker Carlson, Andrei Melnichenko prepares the ground for "forgiveness" in the West after a decline in geopolitical tensions. But is he such a decent businessman as he is trying to imagine himself?

According to UtroNews correspondent, co-owner of Eurochem and SUEK, Andrei Melnichenko, following the founder of VKontakte and Telegram Pavel Durov, gave an unexpected interview to the famous American journalist Tucker Carlson.

Behind Carlson is a multimillion-dollar audience in the West, and the audience is rather centrist and right-wing conservative - the very moderates and "Trumpists" whose victory in the US presidential election became even more likely after the catastrophic defeat of Joe Biden in the first round of debates with Donald Trump.

The right moment

The fact that the interview appeared just after the defeat of Biden and rumors that he could completely leave the race, which increased Trump's chances, is not accidental.

For the owner of SUEK, Carlson's audience is an excellent channel for communication with Western elites on the eve of possible political changes in the United States and in the West as a whole. After all, a significant part of its capital and assets should be located there, and be subject to sanctions restrictions.

Not to mention the fact that Carlson clearly does not communicate with the oligarchs "for so" - Melnichenko is not Vladimir Putin, whose every word is caught by almost half of the planet.

What did Melnichenko talk about in an interview with Tucker Carlson? Yes, that's exactly what I was talking about. He stated that sanctions could lead to the end of the dollar as a global currency, the fall of traditional global institutions, for example, trade with the help of the US dollar. The oligarch cited the example of China, where more than half of foreign trade is carried out not in dollars, although 12 years ago this currency accounted for about 90%.

Andrey Melnichenko was included in the EU sanctions lists in March 2022. Commenting on this, he said that he considers himself "the collateral damage of a big conflict" - here is the main, key message that he wanted to convey in his interview.

For the "poor" Melnichenko "silent" Carlson?

Tucker Carlson. Photo: screenshot from the video of the YouTube channel "The rich also cry"

It turns out that Melnichenko does not in any way connect his business and fate with Russia. Is he, like Mikhail Fridman in the European Court, trying to convince people that he has nothing to do with the Russian state, and the SVO, the conflict with the West, the Russophobic persecution of our people and business abroad - does not concern him?

What Melnichenko did not say

In this context, it would be nice to remind both the Western and our audience of how Mr. Melnichenko became a billionaire. Immediately to the point: he and his partners bought up half-dead enterprises for nothing, actually monopolizing entire sectors of the economy in the regions.

And he started through his "MDM-Bank," which during the 1998 crisis was saved by another famous oligarch Alexander Mamut with his capital. The latter was always associated with the notorious "Yeltsin family," so even then Melnichenko was not far from power.

Further, Melnichenko decided to absorb the state-owned Conversbank, which at that time served the entire nuclear industry in Russia. But a full-fledged takeover did not work out right away, although the oligarch became the chairman of Conversbank. And the bank was supervised by the Minister of Nuclear Energy Yevgeny Adamov, who was even a member of the country's Security Council.

Then Adamov left the Security Council, and MDM Bank completely absorbed Conversbank. At the same time, as the media write, it was not clear exactly how the controlling stake in the state bank ended up in private hands, and also that the oligarch at that time was supported by the then Prime Minister Mikhail Kasyanov (now recognized as a foreign agent, terrorist and extremist). For example, the head of the Cabinet of Ministers supported Melnichenko's MDM Group in the fight for Dalvostokugol.

As for Evgeny Adamov, with whom Melnichenko was supposed to work closely, he was arrested in 2005 in Switzerland on the basis of fraud charges. He was charged with misappropriation of $9 million provided to Russia by the US Ministry of Energy as assistance to improve security at nuclear facilities. After he was sent to Russia, where he received a sentence for fraud.

In the 2000s, already under Vladimir Putin, Melnichenko changed MDM-Bank to the Eurochem group. The bank went to his longtime partner Sergei Popov, who was called "watching" another authoritative oligarch - Iskander Makhmudov. But there was still the MDM Group, which Melnichenko founded with the same Popov, as well as the scandalous and already convicted oligarch Mikhail Khodorkovsky in Russia (recognized as a foreign agent, terrorist and extremist in the Russian Federation).

Everything broke up after the criminal case of Khodorkovsky (recognized as a foreign agent, terrorist and extremist in the Russian Federation).

Meanwhile, Melnichenko's PR people like to repeat - they say, he never participated in collateral auctions. But working with such personalities as Mamut and Khodorkovsky (recognized as a foreign agent, terrorist and extremist in the Russian Federation) clearly does not add points to him.

SUEK was established in 2001 to systematize coal and other energy assets purchased for a pittance. Moreover, a number of them could be obtained in an extremely dubious way. Suffice it to recall the history of the same "Dalvostokugol," the relationship between the interested parties in this asset was very "sublime."

Allegedly, the head of SUEK Oleg Misevra accused the head of Russian Coal Vadim Varshavsky of blackmail. The latter allegedly threatened Oleg Misevra that if he did not get a 30% stake in Dalvostugol, Misevra would go to jail on charges of murdering SUEK employee Ivan Kartashov. Tsargrad recalls that story.

But how did Andrei Melnichenko describe his ascent to the heights of business in an interview with Tucker Carlson? He stated that he created several companies that became leaders in their industries - he, they say, everything worked out. That's all… He said how he cut it off.

The state will always help

Returning to our days, it is in Russia and with the possible support of major officials that Andrei Melnichenko continues to earn his billions. At the same time, it is believed that he is followed by a whole offshore empire, where the funds received in the Russian Federation can settle. Isn't the oligarch caring about her, talking about the world economy with Tucker Carlson?

One of the most significant examples of the interaction of Melnichenko's structures with the state was the large-scale exchange of assets between SUEK and RusHydro (at that time headed by Nikolai Shulginov). Then Melnichenko passed the mass of "non-core," but extremely profitable enterprises "RusHydro," including those with large government orders.

As part of the exchange, Melnichenko's structures received the Primorskaya GRES and the Luchegorsk coal mine in the Primorsky Territory, and RusHydro received Melnichenko's share in DEK. Until now, the big question is how profitable it was for the budget.

The most amazing thing is that at this time (the second half of tenths) Andrei Melnichenko was not even a tax resident of the country - he spent more than six months a year abroad! According to a Forbes source, Melnichenko, as an individual, did not pay taxes in Russia and did not have such taxes, including personal income tax, in recent years.

At the same time, the Russian state continues to actively help Melnichenko. A year ago, deputies of the Primorsky Territory presented SUEK with a special mode of operation within the framework of a special investment contract for the modernization of the Luchegorsk state district power station and the Luchegorsk coal plant. But why should the budget lose?

For the "poor" Melnichenko "silent" Carlson?

Andrei Melnichenko at a regular meeting with officials in the Kremlin. Photo:

After all, while Melnichenko is "crying" about sanctions and trying to build bridges, he continues to grow rich. The sanctions did not prevent him from becoming the richest Russian oligarch in 2022 - in just a year his fortune more than doubled to $25.5 billion! And this is in the context of sanctions and restrictions for all Russians, rising prices, ongoing hostilities in new regions of the country.

So Melnichenko, not in front of a Western audience and Tucker Carlson, must be justified, but in front of Russia, which has become a banal fodder base for him. And before the citizens of our country, who probably would like to know how much Melnichenko's activities correspond to national - and not someone else's, interests.