Rusal warns sanctions 'materially adverse' to company; CEO, seven directors to resign

Ukraine blacklists Deripaska Miller and Vekselberg

Ukraine blacklists Deripaska Miller and Vekselberg

Russian billionaire businessman Oleg Deripaska has stepped down as director of Russia's aluminum giant Rusal, the company announced.

The move is part of a choreographed series of steps which he hopes will persuade the USA government to rescind sanctions that have crippled his businesses. The mass exodus is part of a bid to alleviate sanctions imposed on the company by the US Treasury.

Washington said he and fellow tycoons were profiting from association with a Kremlin conducting "malign activities" around the globe.

Separately, Rusal reportedly resumed shipping aluminum to some customers last week following the extension of the deadline for companies to wind down contracts under usa sanctions.

Each of the individuals in question "has confirmed that he/she does not have any disagreement with the board and that there is no other matter relating to his/her resignation which needs to be brought to the attention of the shareholders of the company", Rusal said. The Askeaton company refines imported bauxite into alumina which is a major ingredient in the manufacturing of aluminium.

"The world has become a much more unsafe place to live", - said the head of VTB, adding that it "bothers him more than sanctions".

In its statement, Rusal wrote: "Since April 2018, the company, acting in the best interests of its creditors, shareholders and partners, has been in continuous discussions with various authorities in an attempt to seek relief from the sanctions regime imposed by OFAC or to be removed from the Specially Designated Nationals list". In addition, since June 28, members of the En+ board of directors, which is controlled by Deripaska, have left their posts.

Rusal is now taking steps to loosen its ties to EN+. The company also warned that the United States sanctions, which were announced last month, could make it tough for it to pay back its debts.

Deripaska now holds a 66% stake in En+.

The three sources, who asked not to be named, said that the share buyback manoeuvre was one of several options under consideration for reducing Deripaska's stake.

In order to take up the United States deal and avoid sanctions, Deripaska's shareholding in EN+ would need to be reduced to below 50 percent, and a majority new board of independent directors would also need to be appointed.

In April, analysts said it was likely that Rusal would have to be bailed out by the Russian government.

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