Fishing Company Swallows Competition

A fishing company co-owned by the brother of Moscow region acting Governor Andrei Vorobyov has purchased two smaller rivals in a $190 million deal that will make its pollock catch the biggest in the country, a news report said Friday.

Maxim Vorobyov owns 36 percent of Russkoye More — Dobycha (Russian Sea — Extaction), the company that made the acquisitions.

The company bought the new assets from a private Russian investor, Vedomosti reported.

However, other sources said that the ultimate owner is Pacific Andes, the Chinese fishing giant, the report said.

The Federal Anti-Monopoly Service concluded at the end of last year that Pacific Andes violated the law on foreign investment in strategic industries by buying into Russian fishing assets. The watchdog ordered the company to sell them off.

The companies that changed hands are Sovgavanryba and Vostokrybprom, both based in the Far East. They will put the cumulative pollock catch by Russkoye More — Dobycha at 12 percent of the country's total, or 220,000 metric tons annually, the company said.

In January, Russkoye More — Dobycha bought two more companies that were controlled by Pacific Andes, the Federal Anti-Monopoly Service said

Andrei Vorobyov, the acting governor, is running in the Moscow region's gubernatorial elections later this year. He is a member of the pro-Kremlin United Russia party.

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