Ukrainian Press Denounces President Uses Tax Haven to Evade Taxes

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Ukrainian Press Denounces President Uses Tax Haven to Evade Taxes
Fecha de publicación: 
4 April 2016
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The Ukrainian television channel Hromadske, and the Ukrainian newspaper Kyiv Post, both reported on Wednesday that in August 2014, confidants of the so-called Chocolate King initiated the process to create an offshore company on the British Virgin Islands.

Letters and documents leaked from the Panamanian firm Mossack Fonseca and shared with Hromadske, confirm that the goal was to transfer Roshen's assets to a tax haven before the sale so as not to pay taxes in Ukraine.

Whilst running as a candidate in the presidential elections of May 2014, the oligarch promised to sell his empire, and months after being elected, he said that the Rothschild group was managing the sale.

He spoke of the company again in January, and said he no longer controlled it due to the transfer of its assets to a blind trust.

However, Hromadske TV and Kyiv Post pointed out that after two years, there is still no evidence of the sale.

According to the documents obtained by the journalists, Poroshenko intends to carry out the transaction, but will complete it in a tax haven to avoid Ukrainian taxes.

Poroshenko swore in official statements in 2014 and 2015 that he did not owe any foreign companies. When Hromadske's reporters asked in the President's office about the corporation on the Virgin Islands, they were sent to the Avellum Partner's law firm, which endorsed the registration of the company.

When pressed by the journalists' questions, the spokesmen of the law firm admitted to working on creating a trust to transfer Poroshenko's assets.

This information contrasts with Poroshenko's statement to the press in January, when he stated he had sent Roshen's assests to a blind trust.

Forbes magazine reported last March that Poroshenko's fortune exceeds 858 milion dollars, and in 2015 the tycoon made 100 million US dollars in profit, figures which contradict the leader's statements.

The magazine went on to say that the President still owns Roshen, despite the commitment made during his election to sell the business. He made the promise in order to distance himself from a position of an oligarch, a position which he criticizes.

The information obtained by Forbes, contrasts Poroshenko's income statement in 2015, which was published on his website and which claimed that he was worth $ 2,384,615.

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