Kairat Boranbaev returned almost everything and left early
Former matchmaker Nursultan Nazarbayevbusinessman Kairat Boranbaev transfers everything acquired through backbreaking labor to the state. Among the returned assets are an oil field, a gas distribution company, a chain of fitness centers, shopping and entertainment complexes and much more. The former oligarch, convicted last month of embezzlement, is parting with his property voluntarily. Boranbaev’s desire to cooperate with the investigation has already helped him reduce his sentence for embezzlement from eight to six years in prison.
Perhaps this is not the limit, since the press service of the Financial Monitoring Agency reports almost daily about new assets transferred by the businessman. What the repentant oligarch has already given to the state and what else he can offer is in the Fergana material. Kairat Boranbaev is a person from the circle of the former president of Kazakhstan. His daughter Alima was married to the grandson of Nursultan Nazarbayev – Aisultan, who died in August 2020. Just two years ago, Boranbayev was included in two Kazakhstan Forbes ratings – the richest and most influential businessmen in the republic. The magazine estimated his fortune at $590 million.
Until his detention and subsequent arrest in March last year, Boranbaev had no plans to return anything to anyone. A month later, it became known that the akimat (mayor’s office) of Almaty had regained control over paid parking lots that had been transferred to private ownership in 2016. One of the operating companies of these parking lots, AlanParking LLP, was controlled by Boranbaev and his relative. In a short time, 100% of the share in this company became the property of the city, and income, accordingly, began to flow into the city budget.
In mid-September, shortly before the oligarch was sentenced, the Financial Monitoring Agency reported that Kairat Boranbaev voluntarily returned assets worth over 90 billion tenge ($195.4 million) to the state. Among them were an oil field, a gas distribution company, a service enterprise, hotel and shopping and entertainment complexes, a network of fitness centers, and office premises. The names and costs of the objects have only just been published by AFM. The following became the property of the state:
- the Karazhanbas Severny field, the production parameters of which are 143 wells with a reserve of 2.6 million tons of oil and 13.2 million cubic meters of gas with an estimated cost of 35.4 billion tenge ($74 million). It is the most expensive asset;
- gas distribution company Asia Gas Chundzha, which transports and sells commercial gas. Its market value is about 14 billion tenge ($29 million);
- plant for the production and repair of oil and gas equipment LLP “Service Center KazTurboRemont” with an estimated cost of more than 9 billion tenge ($18.8 million). The number of employees of the enterprise is 740 people;
- hotel complex Comfort Hotel Astana (four stars) in the center of the Kazakh capital worth over 1.4 billion tenge (about $3 million);
- underground shopping center “Almaly” on Republic Square in Almaty;
- Unity Hall LLP (engaged in rental and property management). The area of the facility, located in the Almaty Towers business center, exceeds 11 thousand square meters;
- a network of fitness clubs Fitnation, whose facilities are located in Astana, Almaty and Kostanay.
- The value of the last three assets is 33.75 billion tenge (about $70 million).
- Boranbaev’s company transferred another $66 million to the Education Infrastructure Support Fund. Money from there will be used for the construction and reconstruction of schools and other educational institutions, as well as for the development of the social sphere throughout the country.
- The businessman reimbursed 14.5 billion tenge ($30.3 million) as part of an investigation into the theft of funds during the import of natural gas.
By the court verdict in the same case, he were confiscated a plot in Almaty and over 2 billion tenge ($4 million) in bank accounts.
The refund, coupled with the contribution to the Fund and the transferred assets, cost Boranbaev almost $300 million. This is approximately half of his previous wealth. And this is just what was reported by the Financial Monitoring Agency, but there were other episodes of “donation”.
Forbes.kz recently wrotethat the shareholders of Phystech II JSC (Aktau), including Kairat Boranbaev, decided to “voluntarily and free of charge” transfer to the state 100% of the company’s common voting shares (slightly more than 13.7 million pieces) with a total estimated value of 35.42 billion tenge ($74 million). The decision was made on October 4.
Phystech II was created in June 2015. It is engaged in the exploration, production and sale of hydrocarbons in oil and gas areas in the Mangistau region, in particular, it is developing the Karazhanbas Northern oil field, which was also transferred to the state.
What else can a businessman offer?
Boranbayev is still the chairman of the board of directors and general director of the Almaly Asset Management Company holding, one of the largest diversified companies in the republic. In her assets are listed production and logistics complex Food Town KZ, Nur-May Pharmacy, Karaganda pharmaceutical complex, petrochemical company Chemical, natural mineral water brand Alex Saryagash, Esentai Mall shopping center.
Source Ulysmedia.kz claimsthat as part of the procedural agreement, Boranbayev will return $1.5 billion worth of assets to Kazakhstan. This amount is almost three times higher than the oligarch’s fortune calculated by Kazakhstan’s Forbes. But even if the final figure turns out to be less, Boranbayev will have to give the state all or almost all of his assets.
In early October, journalists asked Finance Minister Erulan Zhamaubaev the question of who will now manage the oligarch’s property and how. In response, the official voiced two scenarios:
Boranbayev was among the first oligarchs to experience the unprecedented law on the return of capital. Along with the nephew of Nursultan Nazarbayev Kairat Satybaldy, who last year also received six years in prison for embezzlement. The only difference is that Boranbayev’s current criminal case is the only one. And in relation to Satybalda, as reported, cases of tax evasion and legalization of criminal proceeds are still being investigated.
In total, there are 162 people in Kazakhstan who, as the president put it, Kassym-Jomart Tokayev, own half the country’s wealth, and who, under the new law, will likely have to prove the legal origin of their capital. However, the head of state has openly spoken more than once about how this can be avoided.
The cases of Boranbayev and Satybaldy are intended to show those who refuse to listen to the head of state that they can lose not only their fortune, but also their freedom.
— Abilkhan Boranbaev was found guilty of committing a criminal offense under Art. 367 part 2 of the Criminal Code of the Republic of Kazakhstan, and was sentenced to 4 years and 6 months of imprisonment with lifelong deprivation of the right to hold positions in the civil service and in the quasi-public sector.
— Dauren Kazbek was found guilty of committing a criminal offense under Art. 366 part 3 clause 2 of the Criminal Code of the Republic of Kazakhstan, and he was sentenced to imprisonment for a period of 7 years with lifelong deprivation of the right to hold positions in the civil service and in the quasi-public sector.