I am writing to you regarding an international campaign that is now taking shape. There are links following to various documents and websites, but I shall outline the issues here:
UralChem, Russia's biggest fertilizer company, is currently extending its operations into the European Market. UralChem has an appalling record on human rights, workers rights, safety of workers and those who live near to it's plants and factories and financial dealing and transparency. Not exactly surprising for a Russian Corporation, but read on.
There are two main aims in the European expansion in the immediate future:
1. Establishing a huge plan at Dieppe, port-side and close to schools, a major railway station, a hospital, commercial and residential areas. In 2001 in Toulouse, the AZF fertiliser plant exploded killing 31 people. The Dieppe Uralchem proposed plant has the capacity to store twenty times the amount of unstable material as the AZF plant did in Toulouse. there is a major campaign against the plant ongoing in Dieppe at the moment.
2. Floating a large number of shares on the London Stock Exchange. UralChem has a large number of debts and is seeking refinancing through a flotation, backed by Morgan Stanley, UBS and Renaissance Capital. It hopes to achieve a valuation of around $2 billion selling 20 - 30% of its shares in this initial public offering.
Russian activists have been campaigning against the excesses of UralChem and it's oligarch owner, Dmitry Mazepin, people in Dieppe have taken to the streets against this threat to there town. Now campaigners in London are joining the fight.
For detailed background to this situation and more please click here [pdf].
there are two things we're asking you to do to help:
1. there is a public letter from the Socio Ecological union in Russia we would like you to add your name to (see attachment "Bankam Inglis1")
2. we are holding a roundtable discussion on Wednesday 31st March at 1pm - 6pm at Birkbeck College, university of London in Bloomsbury, Central London.
Attached is the programme for the afternoon, please let me know if you would like to attend.
Due to the nature of the roundtable, this event is by invite only in order to keep things manageable .
I look forward to hearing from you.
on behalf of Boris Kagarlitsky & Maxim Shingarkin
Letter for signatures "Bankam Inglis1"
Roundtable programme "roundtable"