The Ministry of Transport and Communications did not prevent the filing of charges in relation to the derivatives losses incurred by Finavia, states Anne Berner (Centre), the Minister of Transport and Communications.
“The ministry did not interfered improperly in the operational affairs of Finavia in dealing with the derivatives case. Nor has the ministry prevented the filing of charges against the former
managing director or former board members of the [state-owned aviation] company,” she reiterates in a press release issued on Saturday.
STT reported earlier on Saturday that it has uncovered evidence of the alleged ministerial involvement in the decision to drop the charges. An e-mail obtained by the news agency indicates that the board of directors of Finavia was instructed “not to proceed” with the charges by Berner in October 2015.
“I notify at the request of the minister that Finavia will hold an extraordinary general meeting in mid-November. The company should until then refrain from proceeding with the case of derivatives charges,” the e-mail reads. The e-mail was sent to the now-former board chairperson of Finavia, Riitta Tiuraniemi, by Harri Pursiainen, the permanent secretary at the Ministry of Transport and Communications, on 14 October, 2015.
- VTV: Ministry interfered improperly in operations of state-owned company (28 June, 2016)
- Berner denies accusations of inappropriate ownership steering (02 June, 2016)
- VTV launches compliance audit into Finavia and Ministry of Transport (23 December, 2015)
Helsingin Sanomat points out that no extraordinary general meeting was ever held.
Berner argues in the press release that the e-mail was sent at a time when it had yet to be determined how to best address the issue.
Finavia, she adds, made two conflicting decisions on whether or not to bring charges against its former management: its board of directors decided unanimously not to bring the charges on 6 March, 2015, but overturned the decision by a narrow majority on 25 September, 2015.
“The owner wanted to clarify the reasons for the conflicting decisions made by the company's board of directors and for the dissenting opinion of board members,” explains Berner.
Berner also emphasises that no evidence of unlawful interference was found in the audit conducted by the National Audit Office of Finland (VTV).
VTV estimated in an audit report published in June that both Finavia and its board of directors acted with due diligence in regards to inquiring into the losses of 34 million euros arising from a series of derivatives contracts in 2009–2011. The Ministry of Transport and Communications, on the other hand, interfered improperly in the operations of the board of directors.
The Ministry of Transport and Communications has also published an excerpt of a document detailing its actions and the sequence of events during the inquiry. The document in question, it points out, was submitted to VTV in December 2015. The document can be found on the website of the Ministry of Transport and Communications.
Aleksi Teivainen – HT
Photo: Juha Harju – Lehtikuva
Source: Uusi Suomi