Turkmenistan applauded the launch of the new state’s chemical plant in the remote city of Garabogaz in September 2018. Foreign officials in Ashgabat are said to have traveled all the route to the Caspian Sea to celebrate the state’s latest industrial success.
Following an investigation of offshore files, the OCCRP reported on October 14 that state industrial plants in Turkmenistan are trying to channel exports through mysterious UK firms with connections to the nephew of Turkmen President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov.
The inquiry was conducted in collaboration with Gundogar.org and Turkmen. News revealed that a Caran Holdings, a mysterious Scottish company, is at the heart of mineral organic fertilizer sales produced at a huge state ammonia and urea (carbamide) plant in Garabogaz, Turkmenistan, which has been in operation for three years and was built with the support of a $1.16 billion debts from the Japanese International Finance Corporation.
Hajymyrat Rejepov, one of the highly centralized president’s nephews, has played an important role in the Scottish firm. The people named as the company’s majority shareholders show up to be Rejepov’s workers. This evidence is based on the Pandora Papers, a scandal of thousands of documents from offshore business service providers obtained by the OCCRP and other media sources worldwide.
The data contained more than one Rejepov besides Hajymyrat. Shamyrat, his younger brother, benefitting from a similar strategy, holding a similar position in a UK-based firm that claims to be a major exporter of petroleum — that it purchases from the world’s biggest state oil companies.
The leaked files paint a confusing picture of the ultimate beneficiaries of both companies: Their investor were offshore “beneficiaries,” whose purpose is to conceal the true owners’ identities. When the law in the United Kingdom was changed to involve the verification of a company’s “persons of effective control,” a few little Turkmens were proclaimed at different points. When OCCRP contacted them, they have been either unattainable or refused to comment.
The younger brother of Hajymyrat, Shamyrat worked for Delanore, a company that exported petroleum and petrochemical products from Turkmen state oil and natural gas plants.
Despite its website’s claim to be “the leading component in the import/export of oil products in the Mideast and CIS countries,” the company was formed in complete secrecy.
When it was founded in the UK in 2015, its founder was a Seychelles citizen, and its successive owners were also nominations.
Shamyrat Rejepov’s name has never been found in any government records related to the company. Delanore proclaimed a sequence of majority shareholders who were reduced Turkmen citizens for decades. OCCRP deduced that it was unsure how much profit Hajymyrat, as well as Shamyrat Rejepov, managed to make in commodity markets, but there were obvious indications of their riches in the United Arab Emirates. Ever since the United Kingdom has made it a requirement for all local firms to reveal the identities of their majority shareholders. According to Greatcom’s filers, Rejepov entirely controlled the company.
Berdimuhamedov’s declaration allowing Greatcom to import stuff is a one-of-a-kind file in a country in which the president is directly involved in almost every aspect of governance. So out multitudes of presidential orders reviewed by journalists, this is the only one that is directly aware of food resources.