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19 October 2019
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Interviews

Gheorghe Russu

Vice-director, The Center for Combating Economic Crimes and Corruption

Parties-Phantoms, Parties - State Institutions, Parties - State Enterprises

Ion PREAŞCĂ

20 parties have registered in the current election campaign. Many people say it is a too big number for such a small country as Moldova. At the same time, much more parties could take part in the election campaign.

Last week illustrated
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Activists launch Moldova’s first ‘Space Camp’ © Susan Coughtrie

The List Mystery

At the beginning of the last week, the Russian Federal Service for Veterinary and Phytosanitary Supervision Rosselhoznadzor banned fruit import from over one hundred Moldovan companies.
Ion PREAŞCĂ, 4 September 2010, 15:13

According to the list received from Russia, only 33 companies have the right to export their production to Russia, although the Moldovan Ministry of Agriculture asked authorization for 177 companies.

Chisinau authorities promised they would soon tell what really happened, but there are already few suspicions that someone organized all that.

Valeriu Cosarciuc, the Minister of Agriculture and Food Industry, said Wednesday that most of the fruit and vegetables exporting companies approved by Russia belong to one person.

We tried to check what the firms from the list of 33 companies permitted to export fruit and vegetables to Russia are.
Agrolibimpex Ltd. is the first in the list. Lilian Burduja, its director and owner, told us his company had traded with fruit since 2003. "We had no problems in our activity. We have apple gardens in Floresti and Soroca. You can visit us, as right now we are gathering summer apples and don't have much time to travel. Last year, my company was also the first in the Ministry of Agriculture's list of companies exporting fruit and vegetables to Russia and I don't see any problem here", Lilian Burduja said.
Another company from the list - Comet Меtal Ltd, according to the information from the Internet, specializes in trade with metals. None of the indicated telephones responded. The company's director is Iurie Capmari, who, according to the information that we found, is also the head of another firm - Аlcaro-Мenegment Ltd. rendering customs and goods transportation services. It can be explained by the fact that Iurie Capmari figures on the list of specialists in the field of customs registration on the Customs Service's webpage.

Timofei Caldare possessing the Căldare Timofei farm told us he had apple- and pear gardens, refrigerators for production, etc. At the same time, he says his company has exported apples, pears, cherries, etc. to Russia for years and hasn't had problems. According to him, his company is included into the list of exporters to Russia usually by the Balti branch of the Moldovan Phytosanitary Service.

The list can give rise to certain confusion as some names are written in Russian or contain Cyrillic letters like the firm Golden Rainbow. There is a company ГОЛДЕН РЕЙНБОВ ООО (it is the Cyrillic-alphabet-written name of the Golden Rainbow) in Tiraspol which specializes in trade with foodstuffs, as well as in cosmetics.

Instead, we have the Moldovan-Israeli joint enterprise Golden Rainbow Ltd. in the top biggest exporters from Moldova in 2005-2007 published on www.bis.md of the Business Intelligent Services - the analytic center headed by the current Vice Prime Minister Valeriu Lazar until the last year.

We haven't found any relevant data about such companies as Tezaur-agro Ltd., Ludvilac Agro Ltd., Gosvicom Ltd., Sandic Gheorghii M, Prim Forest Ltd., VinexPrim Ltd., Ksalex Den Ltd.

Sergiu Zagaievschi, the owner of the Zerghes Ltd., specializing in trade with industrial cotton told us that along with this activity he had been engaged in trade with fruit and vegetables for a long time. Although, he didn't hide the fact that he is surprised that the company was included into the list. "It is curious that a firm with which we have been exporting fruit for a long time wasn't chosen, while Zerghes found itself in the list even though it has other basic fields of activity", he said.
It didn't take much time to find the URS Bergher Ltd. company, as it has a webpage http://www.ursbergher.com/. Although in the beginning its main activity was trade, sale and packing of chemical production, now the company is also engaged in growing of apples and grapes and plans to plant cherry- and peach gardens.

The companies GCC-Service Ltd. (it is also the Glass Container Company shareholder) and Autotrans Logistic Ltd. mainly figure as providers of the international transport services while Farmexpo Ltd. possesses bonded warehouses.
The Pompey Trading House company raises a big question. It appears in many journalist investigations regarding trade with meat and relations with phantom firms. So does the Acates-L company.

Anyway, the list of 33 companies accepted by Rosselhoznadzor for export of fruit and vegetables to Russia isn't perfect. Some firms engaged in everything but growing of fruit and vegetables are in the list together with serious companies specializing in trade with fruit and vegetables.

Given the fact that the initial list was made up by the Moldovan authorities, it isn't clear why it provokes so many surmises. Maybe the verification possibilities of the authorities are incomparable with those of journalists. Like it or not, suggestions appear that someone has taken advantage of the opportunity to get into the list to be able "to provide fruit and vegetables export services" to the firms which were excluded.

After Prime Minister Vlad Filat's intervention, the Ministry of Agriculture is to update the list and to delegate a Ministry's representative to Moscow urgently to present it to the specialized authorities.

It's not clear why the officials couldn't check the companies before especially since it's not that troublesome.

 



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