“I made an involuntary decision that my investment company SCM will exit its media business. This week Media Group Ukraine will surrender for the benefit of the State all Ukrainian licenses of our television channels for terrestrial and satellite broadcasting, as well as print media licenses. We shall also cease operations of MGU’s online media,” reads the statement by Rinat Akhmetov, the founder and shareholder of SCM, published on the company's website.
As noted, the decision is driven by entering into force of the Law of Ukraine “On Preventing Threats to National Security Associated with Excessive Influence by Persons Who Wield Significant Economic and Political Weight in Public Life (Oligarchs)”.
“Being the largest private investor in the Ukrainian economy, I have repeatedly stated that I have never been and am not going to be an oligarch,” Akhmetov underscored.
The businessman stressed that “a short six-month term provided for by the Law for the sale of media assets, coupled with the Russian military aggression against Ukraine make it impossible for SCM to sell its media business on market terms.”
As reported, in November 2021, President Volodymyr Zelensky signed the Law of Ukraine "On Preventing Threats to National Security Associated with Excessive Influence by Persons Who Wield Significant Economic and Political Weight in Public Life (Oligarchs)".
The document provides a legal framework for separating big business from political struggle and for limiting the destructive influence of privileged (oligarchic) interests on the economic life of Ukraine. It also establishes criteria for identifying oligarchs and requirements for the transparency of contacts between political figures and officials with oligarchs or their representatives.
On June 29, 2022, President Zelensky enacted the NSDC decision on the register of oligarchs, the procedure for its formation and maintenance, by signing the relevant decree.