UK government trains Russian oligarchs Aven and Fridman
The British authorities allowed Friedman and Aven to receive £1 million a year.
After the imposition of sanctions against them, the co-owners of Alfa Group and LetterOne, Mikhail Fridman and Pyotr Aven, who were blocked in the UK, complained to journalists that they did not even have money to pay the driver or cleaning lady. Although their attempts to prove that they are not “pro-Kremlin oligarchs” have not yet yielded results, life and pay for them has become noticeably easier.
In order for a sanctioned person to receive blocked funds, the UK government issues a special license. In some cases, it allowed the oligarchs to receive more than $1 million a year for daily expenses, writes The New York Times (NYT).
During the first year of the conflict in Ukraine, Fridman was allowed to pay for the work of 19 people, including drivers, cleaners, private chefs and other people doing various tasks. The amount of payments for 10 months amounted to 300,000 pounds ($385,000). In addition, Friedman receives about £7,000 a month for the “basic needs” of the family.
Aven’s monthly allowance is £60,000. Most of these funds go to a security company owned by financial manager Avena. The manager was under investigation on suspicion of helping Aven evade sanctions, court documents show. It is not known whether the government conducted a review before approving such payments, the NYT notes.
In total, the Ministry of Finance allowed Aven to spend more than 1 million pounds ($1.28 million).
Friedman and Aven are not the only Russians sanctioned by the British government, but some of the restrictions were subsequently quietly lifted, the newspaper notes. Last year alone, the Ministry of Finance issued at least 82 licenses, many are also waiting hzikhidtidekrt consideration.