State-owned corporation Olimpstroy, existing since 2007, has already changed three presidents: yesterday Deputy Chief of Staff Minister, Sergei Gaplikov, has been appointed chief builder of Sochi instead of Taimuraz Bolloev. He will manage a budget in the amount of about 70 billion rubles. There are no disruptions, officials reported: Olympic construction is 40% completed as planned.
Yesterday morning Taimuraz Bolloyev resigned his post as president of Olimpstroy on medical grounds, a representative of the state corporation Alexandra Kosterina told Kommersant,. Yesterday, late in the evening, Prime Minister Vladimir Putin accepted the resignation of Mr Bolloev and by his decree a new head of Olimpstroy was appointed. That is the deputy chief of staff to Prime Minister Sergei Gaplikov. In April 2010, Mr. Gaplikov was transferred from his post of prime minister of Chuvashia to the White House; it was he who oversaw the department of industry and infrastructure, which is responsible for preparing for the 2014 Winter Olympics. The staff of Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Kozak, which is in charge of the Sochi-2014, declined to comment on the situation.
Construction of Olympic stadiums and surrounding infrastructure in Sochi will cost 185 billion rubles; the budget allocates about 80 billion rubles, and the rest is done by private investors. In 2009 Olimpstroy received almost all the budget money. The report of the state corporation for the period stated that the cash balance in its accounts amounted to 69.5 billion rubles.
According to the chief architect of "Olimpstroy”, Oleg Kharchenko, state-owned corporation manages the construction of more than 230 Olympic sites, and directly finances about 20 of them. "These projects are implemented on schedule," he says.
Mr Bolloev headed Olimpstroy in June 2009. His predecessors - Semyon Vainshtok and Viktor Kolodyazhny - for 2,5 years made not more than 1% of the declared amount, the source of Kommersant in the state corporation said. At the beginning of 2011 the volume of work performed in Sochi has reached 40%. For example, sport routes already built in Sochi will be tested in mid-February during the Cup of Russia and Europe in Alpine skiing. According to the schedule agreed upon with the International Olympic Committee, this year they should built another 29% of the target volume, in 2012 – 19%, and in the first half of 2013 - about 10%.
Yesterday the investigative committee of Russia in Krasnodar region reported that in 2010, there were 27 criminal cases on corruption brought in the administration of Sochi. In 2007-2010, defendants had stolen more than 23 million rubles, allocated for Olympic construction, though false documents.. However, the IC clarified that those facts had been discovered thanks to the security service of "Olimpstroy”.
Mr Bolloev wanted to leave the state corporation on his own will as early as mid-2010, sources of Kommersant in Olimpstroy reported. This is confirmed by one of the officials in the Russian government. According to one of the interlocutors of Kommersant, this is due to the fact that Taimuraz Bolloev received information about poorly executed engineering work. "Although these works were carried out prior to the appointment of Mr Bolloev to the post of president of the state corporation, the responsibility would be put on him," he explained. Back in February 2010, the vice-president of economics and finance, Alexander Nikonov, left Olimpstroy; he had been invited to this position by Mr. Bolloev.
After Mr. Bolloyev's retirement, according to his friend, he will engage in the development of "BTK Group” he owns. This company is engaged in development, producing clothing for the Defense Ministry, Aeroflot, and also produces men's clothing under the trademarks FOSP and Onegin (according to "SPARK-Interfax, in 2009, its revenue was $ 2.98 billion rubles, Net profit - 154 , 8 million rubles). Mr Bolloev did not reply the calls of "Kommersant".
"We are closely cooperating with Olympstroy" and being one of the major Olympian investors we want stability in the management of state corporations, " a representative of Interros, Nina Dementsova said (it is building the Olympic facilities by more than $ 2 billion). Other large investors - "Basel", JSC "Krasnaya Polyana" - failed to provide prompt feedback. The IOC assured Kommersant that the Olympic construction is on schedule.
Kommersant № 16 (4557) on 01/02/2011