Aliyev’s family was suspected of enrichment on the devaluation of the manat


In the publication of OCCRP says that the Aliyev family, and close to it the businessman received at least $64 million profit on the transaction, which was carried out over several days or weeks before the devaluation of the manat in 2015.

In February 2015, the Central Bank of Azerbaijan devalued its currency against the dollar by about a third, and in December 2015 moved to a floating exchange rate, causing the manat was devalued in one day by 50%. OCCRP noted that just a few days before the first devaluation Aliyev himself, as well as representatives of the Central Bank assured the population that the national currency will remain stable. Investigative journalists wonder whether Aliyev could know about the forthcoming devaluation and could report it to their relatives or business partner to protect their assets and even made a profit on the crisis.

The attention of journalists was attracted by the transactions that were conducted using three Bank — Caspian Development Bank, Pasha Bank and AtaBank. The owners of these banks, according to OCCRP, are close to the Aliyev family businessman Ashraf Kamilov and/or the Aliyev family. Caspian Development Bank and AtaBank associated with the conglomerate Synergy Group, 99% of which is owned Kamilova, and Pasha Bank is controlled by the daughters of the President of Azerbaijan.

According to OCCRP, at the end of January 2015 Caspian Development Bank, which shortly before it came under the control of Synergy Group, gave the State oil company of Azerbaijan (SOCAR) denominated in us dollars loan in $52 million Loan was issued for five years at 6% per annum. OCCRP claims that such loan terms raise questions. For example, the loan amount exceeded 80% of the share capital of the Bank that OCCRP calls “an astounding violation of banking regulations of Azerbaijan”. The loan rate was higher than what is available at that time for SOCAR in the international market. Only this transaction, due to the devaluation of the manat, brought Caspian Development Bank a profit of 13 million manats ($12.5 million). And once at the end of 2015, the manat was devalued a second time in a year, the profits from loan rose to 39.2 million manats ($25.4 million).

The other suspect, according to OCCRP, the transaction also took place a few days before the devaluation of the manat. Member of Synergy Group LLC AAC company engaged in the production of building materials, returned to 60 million manats ($76.5 million), which was due to the Bank AtaBank, and immediately re-took the Bank to borrow a little more money in dollars. Owners AtaBank at least the end of 2014 was Kamilov and the company of the son of the President of Azerbaijan Heydar. Immediately after the devaluation, the deal brought the AAC about 20 million manats ($19.3 million). In turn, AtaBank due to this scheme earned 61 million manats, says OCCRP.

OCCRP also points out the financial results at the end of 2015 at another Bank — Pasha Bank. This Bank was founded by the wife of the President of Azerbaijan Mehriban Aliyeva, now it is the beneficiaries are the President’s daughters Arzu and Leyla. In 2015, the Bank’s profit from foreign exchange transactions and exchange differences amounted to 35.9 million manats (about $28 million) — six times more than a year earlier. But the Bank did not report on the specific transaction, so it is difficult to say in what circumstances he received that profit.

As noted by OCCRP, the entire banking sector of Azerbaijan in the result of the devaluation and the ensuing few months of the transition to a floating exchange rate of the manat lost “over a billion dollars.”

The family of Ilham Iliev has become involved in a journalistic investigation in early April. Journalists the International consortium of investigative journalists (ICIJ), who was the Panamanian legal documents of the company Mossack Fonseca, said that Aliyev’s daughters, Arzu and Leyla control 56% of the consortium of six gold mining companies. While in 2006 the Azerbaijani authorities signed a secret agreement according to which 70% of profits from owned by the daughters of the President of the companies is a waste to them, and only 30% by the state.