“I can’t pay for cleaning”: billionaire Fridman told about the consequences of sanctions

“I can’t pay for cleaning”: billionaire Fridman told about the consequences of sanctions
“I can’t pay for cleaning”: billionaire Fridman told about the consequences of sanctions
17 March, 13:34In the worldPhoto: Павел Смертин / ТАСС
Russian oligarch Mikhail Fridman, who fell under EU sanctions after the start of the Russian military special operation in Ukraine, complained to reporters about the difficulties he now has to face.

According to the billionaire, after blocking his bank accounts, he cannot even pay for the cleaning of his house and reflects that now, as in his student years, he will have to pick up a bucket and a rag himself.

In an interview with Bloomberg Businessweek reporters, the founder of Alfa-Bank admitted that he feels "captured", Forbes notes.

Billionaire Fridman, who owns a fortune of $ 15.5 billion, after the introduction of Western sanctions, found himself in the "strange position of an oligarch who has practically no money".

As soon as sanctions were imposed on him, Fridman, who lives in London, found that his bank card was blocked. To use his money, the billionaire will have to ask permission from the British authorities. They can give him a cap of around £2,500 (around $3,300) per month and will decide for himself whether his requests to spend his own funds are legitimate.

Now the billionaire Fridman, like thousands of ordinary Russians, is faced with the question of how to pay his basic expenses. Now he doubts whether he can afford the services of the cleaning company that kept his mansion in order.

“Maybe I should clean the house myself. This is fine. As a student, I lived in a small dorm room with four other men. But after 35 years, this is unexpected”, - said the billionaire.

Fridman, who owns a mansion in London, a house in Moscow, and has his parents' apartment in Latvia, could have moved from Britain to Israel, providing him with a passport. But the problem for the sanctioned oligarch is that he cannot buy a house in Israel: the money in his accounts is blocked. So for now he has to stay in London.

“I am a prisoner here”, - Fridman laments.

He calls the personal sanctions of the West, imposed against the backdrop of the Russian military special operation in Ukraine against Russian billionaires, erroneous. Fridman assures that he does not have the opportunity to influence the Kremlin's policy regarding military operations in Ukraine. Fridman hoped that personal sanctions would not affect him due to his international activities and support for educational programs.

“We sincerely believed that we are such good friends of the Western world that we cannot be punished”, - the entrepreneur explained.

EU personal sanctions against Fridman and his business partner Petr Aven were introduced on February 28. They vowed to challenge the restrictions. On March 15, the United Kingdom also imposed sanctions against them. “I don’t know how to live on”, - Fridman said in confusion.

Earlier, Mikhail Fridman and his partner Aven reacted critically to the EU sanctions, calling them "false and unfounded" and stating that they did not agree that they were "unofficial emissaries of the Russian authorities."

The entrepreneurs described themselves as "long-term investors committed to European companies". The billionaires cited manifestations of "malicious and deliberate lies" as the reason for the imposition of sanctions by Brussels, with which they intend to fight "with all their might".

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