One of the main American investors in the economy Russia - Michael Calvey, founder of Baring Vostok - was detained on February 15, and then arrested in Moscow. His fund has been operating for more than 20 years and has attracted $ 850 million into the Russian economy. But the investor was suspected of embezzlement of two and a half billion rubles from Vostochny Bank. He faces up to 10 years in prison.
The time of arrest coincided with the holding of an investment forum in Sochi, during which foreign business was urged to invest in Russia. On this occasion, informational noise has risen. In addition, the arrest of such a significant person may lead to additional anti-Russian sanctions.
However, the detention of the American coincided not only with the investment forum, but also with the decision of three world rating agencies to raise the investment rating of the Russian Federation. One and a half times more investors came to Sochi than last year. So the situation around Calvi should not entail terrible consequences for the economy. If he is guilty, then his punishment will protect other investors from fraud. Calvi himself expressed hope for a fair trial.
Perhaps this story is connected with the cleansing of the banking sector. The American investor is the main shareholder of the Russian bank Vostochny. Its second shareholder is Artem Avetisyan. This person leads one of the directions of the Agency for Strategic Initiatives. The media claim that he is patronized by the presidential adviser on economics, Andrei Belousov.
Calvi wanted to increase his stake in Vostochny Bank. At the same time, a conflict broke out between him and Avetisyan. The American investor believes that this situation was the reason for his detention.
In the Calvi case, the court will have to investigate. Russia is preparing for the implementation of large-scale national projects. Enormous funds will go through Russian banks. It is important that they do not leak abroad. Vostochny Bank leads the Far East, an important region where many national projects will be implemented. And if its main shareholder is really guilty of embezzlement, it should be punished, regardless of citizenship and influence. Yes, this may indeed entail new restrictive measures, but the fact is that there is always a reason for sanctions without it.