Small Business of Hydroelectric Power Stations
State power company Latvenergo has been delegated by the state to purchase electricity from the small Hydroelectric Power Stations (HES) and other renewable energy producers paying higher price, so called double tariff. The costs of this energy are included in the Latvenergo electricity tariffs, and all consumers are paying it. In 2002 daily newspaper Diena wrote about doubts related with the operation of the small hydroelectric plants. Among them were companies partly owned by the politicians, who have been active in promoting policies supportive of small HES, e.g. making the Latvenergo pay double tariff for electricity generated by such plants. Two companies - Ranka Hidro and Gaujas HES – linked to Roberts Zīle in 2001 sold energy to the state for LVL 95 703. The owner of both companies were a firm Malēnija, that equally shared (33,33%) among Zīle and two other entrepreneurs affiliated to “fatherlanders” (“tēvzemiešiem”) - Aldis Čeksteris and Gatis Deksnis. Power stations of both companies owned by Malēnija are located on river Gauja. Company Ranka Hidro runs Variņi HES, located in the Gulbene district at Ranka parish Lejas Bierņi, but other - Gaujas HES – in Birzes, the same parish.
Daily newspaper Diena wrote that since 2000 Deksnis was a free-lance advisor to the Minister of Environmental Protection and Regional Development Vladimirs Makarovs (For Fatherland and Freedom/LNNK.). Ministry ran by V.Makarovs harmonised the construction of the small HES and was responsible for the monitoring of the compliance of environmental protection requirements. R.Zīle then was a Minister for Special Assignment for Co-operation with International Financial Agencies. R.Zīle did not see the conflict of interest in his activities. When asked, if his participation in the business of the small HES, considering that the energy generated as part of compulsory purchase for the double tariff is confirmed by Saeima, should not be seen as a conflict of interest, Zīle replied: "My involvement in the company Malēnija is lawful. I don’t hold any office in it and therefore don’t see a conflict of interest here."
Business sector of the small HES is insignificant, though profitable and fully dependent from the favour of the state, therefore involvement of the politicians in this business is perceived with a particular suspicion and potential conflicts of interest are keenly analysed.
Rulle, B. Mazo HES biznesā darbojas ministra Zīles firma. Diena. 03.06.2002
Appoints His Business Partner to the Office of Free Port
Daily newspaper Diena reported that in 2002 as a Minister of Transport R.Zīle appointed Gatis Deksnis to the Free Port of Riga Board as a representative of the Ministry of Transport. Gatis Deksnis was his business partner in Malēnija Ltd. and they had shared a small HES business. G.Deksnis had previously been in the Free Port of Riga Board, but as representative of the Ministry of Environmental Protection and Regional Development.
Rulle, B. KNAB: Koziolam ir interešu konflikts. Diena. 19.12.2002
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Last changes 15.12.2014