In the first decade after the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989, an enormous number of international investors descended upon the countries of Central and Eastern Europe – initially, and particularly, Romania and the so-called “Visegrad Group” of Poland, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, and Hungary – to take advantage of the privatizations occurring across the region and, in the early years, manifold new and giant deals related to the region’s rapid modernization and integration. Inevitably, many of the larger London-based international law firms opened up offices in the region to provide their clients with on-the-ground assistance.
Ukraine local elections, held on October 25, 2020, resulted in a setback for the country’s President, Volodymyr Zelensky, whose party did not secure a single mayoral position in any of the major cities. This did not surprise Dmytro Fedoruk, Partner at Redcliffe Partners in Kyiv, who notes that Zelensky “was not elected for his experience, but rather for his good intentions.”
Redcliffe Partners and Clifford Chance have advised ED & F Man Treasury Management plc, the treasury management arm of ED & F Man, a UK-based international commodities trader, on Ukrainian law aspects on the refinancing and restructuring of nearly USD 1.5 billion of debt and raising an extra USD 320 million in working capital. Allen & Overy and Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld advised the scheme creditors and note-holders, respectively, and Asters advised the unidentified lenders on Ukrainian law aspects of the deal.
On July 23, 2020, CEE Legal Matters reported that Redcliffe Partners had advised the EBRD on an up to EUR 25 million term loan to Ukrainian State Air Traffic Services Enterprise. We reached out to Konstantin Olefirenko, Principal Legal Counsel at the EBRD, to learn more about the deal.
Redcliffe Partners has helped Saudi Basic Industries Corporation obtain merger clearance from the Ukrainian competition authority for the USD 69.1 billion sale of 70% of its shares by the Public Investment Fund of Saudi Arabia – the sovereign wealth fund of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia – to the Saudi Arabian Oil Company.
The Ukrainian government’s conference rooms have been stuffier than usual lately, as policymakers and renewable energy industry representatives attempted to thrash out a compromise to reduce the financial burden left on the administration by a feed-in tariff incentive regime which drove almost 2 GW of generation capacity. The resulting retroactive cuts to payments, outlined below by Ukraine-based lawyer Svitlana Teush, have at least had input from both sides.
Before being elected President of Ukraine last May, Volodymyr Zelensky had virtually no experience in public office. Despite his inexperience – or perhaps because of it – over 73% of the electorate concluded that the comedian and entertainer was the right man to replace Petro Poroshenko, the previous President, and now Zelensky finds himself, at 41, leading an entire nation.