Russian pollock giant threatened by bankruptcy after cartel fine

December 31, 2013, 4:55 pm

By Eugene Gerden, Seafood News

Attacks from Russia's Federal Anti-monopoly Service (FAS) may result in the collapse of one of Russia’s largest fishing producers.

Preobrazhenskaya Trawler Fleet Base (PBTF), one of Russia’s largest fishing companies, is on the verge of bankruptcy, due to the RUB 24 million ($900,000) fine, imposed by the FAS, for its participation in the pollock cartel and the ongoing criminal investigations against the company.

In their letter to Russia’s President Vladimir Putin, PBTF’s management asked for protection from further attacks of FAS, which may result in the collapse of the company and social tensions in the village of Preobrazensky of Russia’s Primorye region.

According to PBTF, the company became a subject of the largest fine imposed by FAS of all the other companies which also participated in the cartel. This is also became despite the fact that PBTF currently remains one of the country’s leading companies in terms of the annual volume of pollock supplies to the domestic market.

In this regard, according to PBTF, the company has already sent a letter to Russia’s Presidential Administration, asking to resolve this issue.

Earlier this year Russia’s leading fishing associations and in particular the National Fisheries Union, the Association of industrial and commercial enterprises of the fish market and the All-Russian Association of fishery enterprises, entrepreneurs and exporters have called on Russia’s Prime-Minister Dmitry Medvedev to stop the attacks of the national Federal Anti-Monopoly Service on the domestic fishing business.

According to them, recent decisions of FAS about the existence of a cartel on the domestic market of pollock roe and ongoing investigations regarding with activities of Pacific Andes in the market have created serious obtacles for the further development of the Russian fishing industry.

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