Here is an updated summary 01/07/20
#1 - radio show $110, POSTED 07/06
#2 - Short Youtube clip $5.15, POSTED 15/06
#3 - TV interview 16/06 $41.20, POSTED 18/06
#4 – Interview from early May, $66.95 (found by translator) POSTED 22/06
#5 – Interview with Zaza & Govt official, 05/06, CANCELLED 29/06 US$87.55
#6 – TV Imedia news 5.23m US$20.60 POSTED 21/06
#7 – News segment with GOGC from 17/6, US$55.00 POSTED 27/06
#8 – Zaza TV interview, 23/06 from 37m mark, US$36.05, POSTED 26/05
#9 – News segment via YouTube, 23/06, 5.30m, US$25.75 POSTED 24/06
#10 Zaza interview TV Kavkasia, 25/06, 26m US$72.10 POSTED 30/06
#11 Zaza statement, Formulanews, 25/06, 3m30s, US$15.45 POSTED 28/06
#12 GSAC long version of #11, 25/06, 21m US$66.95, DUE 02/07
Total invoiced amount = US$602.75 / GBP505.71 (this includes #5 part of which we will offset against new projects)
Translation #1 Transcript of Radio Interview around 1st June - Pt.1
The guest of today's program will be the head of the American company "Frontera Resources Georgia" operating in Georgia, Zaza Mamulaishvili. We will air him in a few minutes, but before that I want to provide you with updated information on one or two stories. After our broadcast yesterday, there was a small difference in statistics regarding the spread of coronavirus in Georgia.
(It then spends a few minutes clarifying the statistic issue)
As for the main issue of our program today and our guest, today we will talk about the company, the work of the company in Georgia and the ongoing processes around it, which have been mentioned many times in recent years in correspondence sent to the Georgian government by the United States Congressmen and not only. Today we are talking about the “Frontera”, which is associated with a number of questions. There are issues that cannot be discussed in public, however, we will try to get answers from our guest on the part that we can talk about and what we can share with our audience. “Radio Tavisufleba” is speaking, it is 10 hours and 6 minutes in Georgia and we continue the program "Dilis Saubrebi" (Morning Conversations). I welcome Mr. Zaza Mamulaishvili, the head of “Frontera Resources Georgia”. Mr. Zaza, Good morning.
Good morning, Ms. Nino.
I have one question at the beginning. Did I introduce you correctly as the head of “Frontera Resources Georgia”? Because the company has a number of registered names, in which "Frontera" is listed. On the part of it is your name, on other part of it is Nikoloz Mamulaishvili. Let's start from this, if you please.
Yes, you presented me correctly and I thank you for this.
As for the rest of the companies, are these interconnected companies or what they has to do with that. Please explain us.
Of course. “Frontera Resources Corporation” is a Texas-based company headquartered in Houston, Texas. I am the president and CEO of this company. The company operates in several different countries in the oil and gas exploration business and various subsidiaries carry out various types of work so that even in Georgia we are represented by several subsidiaries. These are “Frontera Resources Georgian Corporation”, “Frontera Resources US LLC”, “Frontera Eastern Georgia”. So it’s no surprise that we are represented by several subsidiaries during our 23 years of work in the country.
And is it related to the diversity of activities? In other words, what is the cause?
Yes, this is a common practice, because of the nature and type of activity, it is not uncommon to be represented by several subsidiaries. In particular, in this case, Ms. Nino, these subsidiaries are the parties to the agreements with the state, and under this agreement another operating company was established, called “Frontera Eastern Georgia”, and together with the Oil and Gas Corporation, it carries out oil and gas operations on be
Thank you so much for this explanation and let’s move on to the issue itself. Our audience, and the public, in general, has recently come to understand the name of your company frequently. In the last few years, it should be said that this is not a matter of the last year and the last months, the company has not gained relevance in recent months, your company is mentioned in the letters sent from the United States in the context of assessing the environmental benefits of investing in Georgia. Also, our listeners probably know that the case in the Arbitration Court is over and you and the applicant (in this case - the state, the Georgian company) have different assessments about the results of this case, how can both parties to the dispute shall consider the same decision successful. If you can tell us more about it, as well as the Georgian Oil and Gas Corporation and the agency, their representatives state (their last statement was on May 18, on their own page) that "Frontera” was trying to politicize the case from the beginning." If you can tell us more about it. It is also known that the corporation requests the disclosure of the arbitral decision and states that it agrees on it, but you refuse. If you can explain these issues.
With great pleasure. And, thanks for this opportunity, that I am able to explain exactly the issues that we often hear lately. To be honest, I wished that ... I would like the name "Frontera" to be more widely known as a result of the excellent results, after investing $ 550 million, we got it as a result of our work and created a huge value for the country.
What is the reason that the public, as you have mentioned, does not have this information?
This is probably our fault, because we have always thought that we would not produce advertising products because we are searching for and consuming oil and gas, so since we were not producing advertising products, we thought it would be unreasonable to be overly informed about our activities. Our partner, in this case the State Corporation of Oil and Gas, could have covered more broadly about the successes we have achieved over the years, and besides, Ms. Nino, we have been ...
Through all these years, Mr. Zaza? Periods are also important here, as your critique is more related to the period after 2013, and it is also mentioned in letters from the United States. Did you expect the corporation to take care of the success of this company all the time?
We thought that would be the case, because this is exactly the kind of partnership we have been working on since 1997. And, especially, even this period that you mentioned, from 2013, in 2004, we became the first company in the history of Georgia to mobilize capital on the stock exchange of one of the projects in Georgia, we did the listing for the first time and it was then about $100 million. It happened for the first time in the history of the country and all this money was spent on the Georgian investment project and thus introduced Georgia to the stock market of the world capital. It was a huge success. Then, with this capital, with the money that was spent, it happened that we were very successful in drilling, seismic, research, and we found a very large supply of both oil and natural gas. And this stock has been confirmed by the most famous large American stock certification companies. And, that's why we thought it was such a great success not only for the company but for the whole country that we thought our partners in Georgia would present us in positive way, because we could also talk about it, of course, and by the way, on the London Stock Exchange, we were constantly talking about it because we even had an obligation to do so, but it didn't seem to be enough to make the public in Georgia better informed about our activities, which unfortunately is "better late than never", so now we've started talking about what we were doing, what we are doing and what we are going to do in the future.
Well, perhaps this is the result of this deficit, if you can say so, now, because that's ... how can I say ... Against the background of conflicting information and in such a situation you have to talk about the success or failure of the company in this case. However, let's use this time as much as possible to provide this information to our audience. Let’s be clear, to be somewhat brief, I understand that time is limited in airtime, how did it start? Under what conditions did it start? I mean in 1997. What property, what activities, what obligations are connected with the activities of "Frontera"?
In 1997, our contract began with the state signing an agreement under which we would take the entire investment risk on ourselves to carry out the work and find and then extract the oil and gas from these fields. No capital investment is a state obligation, it does not invest any money and most of the oil (more than half) belongs to the Georgian government completely free of charge. If all this fails, the whole risk of investing is ours and only the company will fail in this case. Fortunately, our relationship developed very successfully. During this time and as a result of a $ 560 million investment, we have discovered 350 billion cubic meters of extractable gas. This is south-eastern Georgia, mainly in the Kakheti region. And also 1.5 billion barrels of oil reserves, which have been confirmed not only by our employees and scientists, but also by world famous stock certification companies, which means that the vast majority of these reserves belong to the state completely free of charge.
Could you please determine the “Frontera's” business interest, here if possible?
Less than half of the oil and gas extracted from this agreement is the share of “Frontera”. However, investments made through this share must be reimbursed and only then will it benefit from gas and oil. But the state, from the very first day of our work in 1997, has been virtually profitable, as the state has generated revenue since the Frontera began operations in the country, and this is about $ 30-40 million a year. And in 2013, although there were always some difficulties, and this is natural, because such activities are always accompanied by certain difficulties, somehow we coped with everything, but since 2013, practically, completely new heights have been conquered by our problems, because it became very difficult to actually work with the Oil and Gas Corporation, the Ministries of Economy and Energy. And, every day, and every year, the work and investment environment where we found ourselves from 2013 onwards was getting worse and worse.
Mr. Zaza, we have the first listener online. Let’s listen and continue with my questions afterwards. 2 988 327 is the radio number of „Radio Tavisufleba” and our guest is Zaza Mamulaishvili, the head of "Frontera Risouris Georgia". good morning. You are on the air!
Hello, Mr. Zaza. Hello. My question is - how much oil was extracted in Georgia annually? And what does 1 drilling rig and an operation cost of vertical mineshaft?
Thanks for the question. 2 988 327 is the phone number. We listen to you, Mr. Zaza. Please, answer the listener
Historically, the best mining place in Georgia per 1 well was the Samgori mine, which was discovered in 1974 and the miners could extract about. 1000-1200 tons per day. Since then, no mineshaft was able to extract such amount of resouce. In our case, the maximum rate of extraction that we had was 950 barrels, approx 150 tons, and also 30.000 cubic meters was tankle gas, well that was an excellent result. Historically the biggest oil extraction in Georgia, in 24hrs was 4-4.5 million tons of oil, as for natural gas extraction there had been none before. Now as for the value of the mineshafts, the mineshaft`s cost nowadays, if you want to drill in 3500-4000 meters, is about 5-6 million dollars. The cost is influenced by advanced technology, which means that 1 mineshaft will be drilled in about 2-3 months. For instance, 25, 30, 35 years ago when state company was drilling the mineshaft, it was way too expensive, because the drilling duration lasted for 1.5-2 years. Therefore, the technologies adnvanced and now you can drill 4000 meter deep mineshaft for about 5-6 million and with those debits where 1000-1500 barrels are very useful for the countries.
Mr. Zaza, let's go back to what we were discussing and thus my question will be the folling. You mentioned that the relationshio was complicated with the corporation since 2013. What was the content of this complication? Because if we follow all the statements and answers, we will not have time and just to summarize what was the content of this complication according to your information? What can you share with us?
The main reason for this complication was that we were able to drill very successfully and then test the gas mineshafts and as soon as we informed the Oil and Gas Corporation, the Ministry of Energy, we were expecting them to be very happy with this news, although this did not happen. And it was then that the real complications began, that after this successful test, when we decided to connect one of the gas fields to the main pipeline, the state did not give it to us, even though it belonged to us by law and contract, they did not give us the permission of construction of the pipeline. After long communication, it still was not given to us until the members of Congress intervened and communicated with the State, the Ministry, and the Prime Minister, and only then they gave us the right to build the pipeline.
Which year was that, Mr. Zaza?
It was 2014. Before that we were trying to rach an agreement through the negotiation but all was in vain. And, in 2014, we completed the construction of a 16-kilometer gas pipeline, and after that, we were no longer allowed to carry our own gas to our own gas pipeline. This license was not given to us. They did not give us the license until the communication from Washington, and until congress members contacted the Prime Minister.
How was the refusal of the license explained? On the first, on the second, etc?
It was a long bureaucratic refusal, completely unfounded and unsubstantiated. But this bureaucratic machine refused us. No matter with what kind of technical or commercial justification we addressed them, it was "no." And we could not overcome this "no" until communication from Washington with the Prime Minister took place. Only then did the case start from this zero point. And, finally, Ms. Nino, it turned out that for the first time in the history of Georgia, the natural gas extracted in Georgia was supplied to many customers in Georgia through distribution networks across different parts of the country. Such a thing has never happened before, and this has once again confirmed the possibility that Georgia has enormous potential for natural gas extraction, exploitation, distribution and use in various fields.
Did it affect the tariff at that time? Just to make it clear to the listener why they should be interested.
interested is that, first of all, Georgia has its own resources for natural gas, which will definitely achieve energy independence, because the potential is huge. It has a completely different position economically and politically in the region, you know, now Azerbaijan has a huge political influence on Georgia because it supplies natural gas to Georgia. Russia also has a huge political influence, supplying 10-20% of Georgia`s natural gas consumption annually. And, you can imagine, if there is no need for that and Georgia has its own resources, one is that it will be energy independent, the other is that it will be richer and stronger economically. So, in the long run, of course, it is in the interest of each of us that Georgia has its resources. In addition, as mentioned above, due to the fact that more than half of this extracted natural gas is given completely free of charge to the government, the state can decide to provide customers with high tariffs, low tariffs, differentiate social layers with differentiated tariffs, so that it will be more flexible in its financial, economic and social direction.
It is clear. I would like to talk briefly about the decision of the arbitral tribunal, the publicity of which you do not support, and the publicity of which is demanded by the state of Georgia, the other plaintiff. What is the reason?
We support the disclosure. However, we have repeatedly offered the Georgian side, the State Oil and Gas Corporation and the Oil and Gas Agency to make a joint statement on the arbitral decision, as the decision is very clear and leaves no room for speculation. Therefore, I wanted to jointly disclose the arbitral decision, but I have been refused several times. As for the publication of a 152-page document, it is difficult to do so, as this document contains a large part of commercial confidential information, a lot of technical confidential information and personal information of various individuals, so we need to legally clear all this in order to be able to make the remaining document public. It will take time, so we have repeatedly appealed to the Oil and Gas Corporation and the Ministry of Economy to make a joint statement to let the public know that there is no room for speculation and to jointly announce the outcome of the arbitration, which we have been unfortunately refused several times.
As for the part of the decision announced by the corporation, what would you say about it? You say that you didn't even argue about some part, and that wasn't a matter of controversy at all. Specifically, it concerned the return of land to the state.
Ms. Nino, I think this statement, which was made, is quite irresponsible, the Oil and Gas Corporation and then other officials said that "we won" - this was the statement, "Unfortunately we all lost, Oil and Gas Corporation lost, The government lost, the company lost, Georgia lost." And, that's because there's no such thing as winning. Georgia has appeared completely different in the world as a country that is quite aggressive towards the 23-year-old, the largest American investor in Georgia. After investing so much, and, by the way, we’re not the only ones with such problems, so there’s no winning side here. Everybody was hurt, we all lost. But in essence, what is in this conclusion is that the government demanded that the company, as if we had violated the terms of the contract, must pay more than 320 million in fines, and this, of course, was unfounded and the arbitral tribunal did not grant this request. The government also demanded that we cancel the contract because it was as if we were violating the terms of the contract. This was also not upheld by the arbitral tribunal. These were the basic requirements around which this dispute arose. And what was approved for them was that we had to pay the Oil and Gas Corporation in advance for approx. $ 200,000, which we have been doing for 23 years, and we do not deny that we would pay this advance.
And, secondly, the areas where we do not do oil and gas exploration and extraction work, these areas, this part of the license, should be given back to them what we have already done, approx. 3-4 weeks ago. And, in all this, to get this result, first of all we did not dispute the advance payment on these minerals and the return of these territories, 42 million GEL was paid to lawyers and experts, and the world was awared about such an aggressive attitude towards investors and companies. That’s why I think we’ve all lost with this.
One of the issues and topics ... the listener is waiting for us and then I will continue with my questions if possible. Good morning. You are on the air!
Hello, Ms. Nino. Hello Mr. Zaza. Mr. Zaza, I have such a question for you, in particular, the information was spread that the Americans asked the government if they were ready enough for the fact that if we extract a lot of oil, will it be the reason for fight between you as it did happem in African countries. And it happens in Zimbabwe, etc., and the people will get nothing from this. And, instead, you will havemillionaires, magnates and, as they say, even oligarchs, but on a national basis. It turns out that the authorities have said that we are not ready yet, because you know that at that time people were running with machine guns. Is this true or not? And, now in the current situation, is it possible to really get this oil and prefer us to have a national domestic millionaire and a billionaire rather than millionaire from another country that suits the interests of our country in the interests of big countries like Russia. Do the United States and the countries, that help us in extraction of oil, agree, and how can oil be redistributed?
Thank you so much for the question. To summarize this question - "Who eats who for oil and gas?"
So, there are 2 categories of countries. Countries that use this great good for the benefit of their country, and this is the case, for example, with Norway, USA. There are countries that, on the contrary, use this resource to enrich a few people and the rest of the country lives in poverty. Probably the best example of this is Venezuela, which is the world's richest (richer than Russia and Saudi Arabia) in oil and gas resources but the population is searching for food in the trash and sugar is not for sale in the country and that`s because they have corrupted government in which only a few people want to get rich. So that, thank you very much for this question, it depends on the country, the state, the approach and the philosophy that exists in the country. By the way, the Americans have such a very important law, the "Act on the Prohibition of Corruption Abroad", i.e. American companies can’t even pay a bribe and don’t have the right here for their employee to pay a bribe because the management will be arrested in America. Therefore, the United States is in favor of a very open, clean and transparent business, and this good that we will gain, of course, in the case of its rational operation and distribution, this great good will be given to the population of Georgia. For example, I would like to tell you one thing that is very important now - as a result of our 560 million investment, when independent American certification companies confirmed this stock of gas and oil, it means that people who own land, say in Kakheti, Sagarejo or Dedoplistskaro district, and that if the state would give them the right to mining, i.e. If a person has 2 hectares of land and there is this wealth in this land, the price of this land will already increase and these people will be enriched by it. That's how Texas got rich, that's how Louisiana got rich in the United States, that's how the whole of America got rich, that they had their land and the resources in the the land belonged to them. For instance, even now, if the government makes the changes and grants the rights to the resources to the landowners, they will be richer even now, because we have already proved that there is oil and gas in the lands and the rational use of it will be spread to the whole country and population. So, if we act clever, as the country, this wellness will touch every citizen.
Mr. Zaza. Zaza Mamulaishvili is our guest today, he represents the company "Frontera". „Radio Tavisufleba”`s “Morning Talks” are on the air, which phone number is 2 988 327. I will continue if you please, again with the activities of the company and I want to say more about the perspective. We know that the agency has announced the termination of the contract with the company "Frontera". What is the status of this issue? How is this issue resolved - has a contract been signed between the company and the state, and how do you see the future? I know that you stay in Georgia and continue to work, but what is the perspective?
The prospect is as follows, e.g. Neither by the decision of the arbitral tribunal nor by the contract, the Oil and Gas Agency and the authorities have any right to terminate the contract unilaterally. To be honest, it is completely incomprehensible what such a public statement of theirs serves when they have neither this right under the contract nor by the decision of the arbitral tribunal. We certainly continue to work. It is incomprehensible to us that even if they are going to expropriate us or are going not to let us go to our institions by force, we will not be able to tell you about it until today. I think it would be very foolish behavior to hurt the image of the country in the future, so I hope they don't do that, but I want to emphasize once again that neither they have the legal nor the contractual right to terminate the agreement unilaterally.
Mr. Zaza, is was also reported that “Frontera” itself is demanding payment from the state. Can you explain what this is all about? There was talk of 3 billion, if I am not mistaken ...
Yes, that was $ 3.5 billion. When the authorities filed a lawsuit against us in the Stockholm Arbitration Court, we filed a counterclaim where ew listed the damages we were seeking to compensate because they were systematically obstructed, systematically violated and did not provide for the terms of the contract, because they were unable to allow us to drill and increase oil and gas production. And because they didn't give us all that, they did a lot of damage to the company and the country.
Why didn't you ask for it in time?
We did not ask for it because we were trying to get it through negotiations and consensus
And, if it hasn't worked for years, why not intervene in court or arbitration?
Because court and arbitration are very bad for the country. It's very important...
Are you a businessman, Mr. Zaza?
Of course. Therefore, it is very important for businesses to have a good image of the country, a good image of the project, so that shareholders, banks, funds, were interested in working in that country and investing in the country. If the country has a very bad name, a very bad authority, a very bad image abroad, it will lead to the fact that these investment banks, funds, shareholders, various companies will no longer be interested in coming to Georgia. Therefore, we have always been very careful about this issue and we have tried to resolve these issues through negotiations and agreement.
I understand ... now it is always difficult to talk about the past with some speculation - "it would have been better this way or not ". Although it is possible on a separate issue, when you mentioned the issue of license, then would have been better and less damaging, including for business and country, than the situatino and evaluatinos, which are now available and come from strategic partner of Georgia, it is mentioned in the context besides your country, also the case of „Anaklia port”, which is comperatively clear when we talk about interests of West and Russia, and taking the factors into account, When the Anaklia project is delayed today, despite official statements from the government that it supports and is still ready to implement. This is a separate topic and will take us far, time will pass very soon, unfortunately. Another listener is waiting for us. Good morning. You are on the air!
Hello, Ms. Nino. That's the kind of thing I care about. Wherever there is oil, there is a tense relationship - Venezuela, Libya, Syria, Iraq, and everywhere their governmen has been taken down when they confront foreign companies. If Georgia starts to actually process oil, will this product remain for it? Secondly, Ms. Nino, when you want to know the truth, you have to listen to both sides. It will be good if you bring the complainant in this case and we will understand the opinion. Otherwise, everybody considers themselves right.
Thank you so much for the advice. The traditional format of this show is this and I don’t see a problem with talking to an individual, a separate party. However, it is not a problem, of course, to listen to either side, and as for the positions of the corporation, I try to present it more or less, because the positions of the corporation are also open and known and, of course, we will give them airtime if they have a will like Mr. Like Zaza. That would be really interesting. Mr. Zaza, if you could answer that to the listener - in case of extraction, how can the products be processed on the spot and left?
Yes, for 1 second before that I will just go back to the 3.5 billion lawsuit with our good will, we took it back approx. 1 year ago without asking the state to pay this amount and after that we tried to reach an agreement with them, but they did not want it, but at this moment it is clear to everyone that the company does not demand any compensation from the state. As for the processing of extracted oil, and also natural gas, which is no less important, of course, this is how it should be done. We have studied the Black Sea and Mediterranean basins several times so that Georgia has that potential. As soon as extraction increases, oil production must be built, which has historically existed here in Batumi, and will further improve not only the region, the Black Sea basin, but even the Mediterranean basin. Trading in oil products will further strengthen Georgia's trade relations in many countries and further improve those relations. As for natural gas, it also has great potential, as it can be a chemical industry, say, fertilizer production, if a variety of chemical products, a huge industry can be created in Georgia, especially when we are in such a strategic location on the Black Sea. Products on the world market. It also opens a very large arena for Georgian chemical industry products on the world market. Especially if we have a large amount of natural gas, which means more jobs, better wages, and a richer country. That's the decent thing to do, and it should be done by companies, people, government, etc.
Mr. Zaza, the listener is waiting for us and I will add my question as well. Time passes very quickly. Good morning, You are on the air!
Good morning, Ms. Nino. Georgia has so much potential and how they are hiding it. Therefore, it is necessary to get rid of this oligarch in time and this government in order to get a national government that will be directed towards the people and will use this potential in one way or another. Here, about the case of Anaklia, everything is clear already and it would be good for the Georgian people to think about it and understand what kind of life we had, what kind of live we have and what kind of life we can have. That's the main thing. Thank you so much for this show, thank you so much Mr. Zaza and thank you so much Ms. Nino, you personally have made it so clear to me.
Thank you so much for the call. Unfortunately, the signal was interrupted. We will contact Mr. Zaza again and we will definitely bring him back to the air. We have a technical problem. We are waiting for Mr. Zaza to return, before we update you with the updated statistics. 3 confirmed cases were added to the total number of people infected with coronavirus. 738 is now the total number of cases confirmed in Georgia, 16 new people have recovered from the virus. 573 is the total number of recovered patients which is shown on the website - stopcov.ge. Mr. Zaza, can you hear me?
Yes, I can.
A big apology for this technical issue. The listener called and thanked you. You may have heard part of the beginning. There was no question, so I will continue with my question. I want it to be somewhat clear, I say again, I can’t follow each letter and the overall rhetoric and common critical mood and assessments are clear from the letters from Washington, and this issue already has specific political assessments. There are also reports that I think it has been proven that “Frontera” spends some money on lobbying, which is not illegal of course. What is the connection between this lobbying and these letters, which are often talked about by the government or another representative of the society who sees this process in this way? What can you cay about this?
Thank you very much for this question, Ms. Nino. Of course, lobbying is not prohibited by law, but we do not have a contract with a lobbying company and no one is involved in our lobbying. This is false and misleading information, false information, which is unfortunately deliberately spread ...
For example, which is presented on the the webstite – “Opensecret”?
Yes, for example, if you look at the “Opensecret” website, it clearly states that the company has not paid any money for any of these politicians. There is one very important ...
Isn't it necessary to pay a politician personally, it works a little differently. Yes, I am listening.
Yes, you know what? There, “Opensececret” was used to demonstrate that the company was paying these politicians for their campaign, but it was also mentioned that the company, “Frontera”, had not given them any money.
But the company is spending money on lobbying, so let's say the connection to the letters of these politicians and, as expected, it is not unexpected that you deny all this, however, the company has paid for lobbying.
The company paid for lobbying 4 years ago. The company has been working with one of the companies for several months and since then they no longer have this contract and have not been involved in any such activities for 3 years. By the way, this agreement is public ...
..opensecrets.org“ website shows 2019
The company did not have this contract in 2019, so ... what is given on „opensecrets“ is that the company has not made any contribution. This is public information. 1 3 years old contract is registered with one of the lobbying companies which is kept in the Ministry of Finance and is in the Ministry of Justice, it lasted for several months and that`s it. This is public information and anyone can find it.
As for “opensecrets”, “opensecrets” has a list of politicians for who is given $500, or $2000, claiming that this contribution seems to have gone from the company, but there is also mentioned with a red font on the same website that none of these politicians have received the money from the company. There is 1 important detail and I will explain...
What company is “Cornerstone Government Affairs”, which is mentioned here and has a document which is dated as 2019. For example, for $ 50,000 and so on.
Yes, we had a relationship with „Cornerstone“, but in 2019 we no longer had a relationship. I.e. We had this relationship with „Cornerstone“ and they did some work for us and we ended the contract. So we don't even have a contract with them. So to argue that lobbyists work is not really correct at this moment.
I want… Do we have any listeners waiting or shall I continue? I want ask the question – when… I am sorry, it looks like some of the listeners have already messaged us.
Mr. Gocha writes: "It is very sad that we, the citizens of Georgia and our country, have always been lost as a result of Saakashvili-Ivanishvili's unbridled arrogance and egocentrism."
"I don't know, “Frontera”, but the American senators will really do the trick and show Mr. Oligarch what a trick it is." Mr. Zura writes this.
Thank you so much for the feedback and there was no question. I will continue with my question. In practice, time is running out. What I want to ask you - when the conflict and the problems you describe have something to do with the state company and I want to express interest and narrow down the answer. If we say that the state is hindering your activities, what is the interest? You said that it started when it appeared, confirmed the existence of large stocks, and so on. As a result of your work, some problems have arisen since then. What kind of interest one might have and who has an interest? If you know more and because eventually it will be oil or natural gas, someone should extract it. Whether that will be Bidzina Ivanishvili, Minister, the Prime Minister, or the leader of the ruling party, they can`t extract it by theselves. What do you know more and what can you say today? What is the purpose? In other words, was there a statement about the termination of the contract of "Frontera", or is there some logic that "Frontera" should no longer be in the position of a state company? Shouldn't it work in Georgia? If possible, give us a specific answer as much as possible. You have 1.5 minutes. Sorry.
Yes. In the fourth quarter of 2019, we agreed with two other American companies (one company has a market capitalization of 23 billion and the other 20 billion) to build a consortium similar to that in the Caspian Sea, Azerbaijan, where oil and gas will be extracted and began Large-scale extraction of oil and gas in Georgia. When I arrived from Houston with the management of these companies, I appealed to the Prime Minister of Georgia, Gakharia, and the Minister of Economy, Turnava, to meet only to confirm to all three companies that Georgia welcomes foreign investment in oil and gas extraction. Imagine that they didn't even meet us, they didn't even answer us. This is a multi-billion dollar mine development project where thousands of people should be employed and huge value can be created for the country. Now what should be the reason, if not the desire that there were no American companies here at all. Plus Philip Morris, Georgian-American alloys, Iconia Capital, Caucasus Mining Corporation - These are the American companies that have also been harassed and are being harassed now. Plus - NDI And IRI, which you know how they are being discredited...
This is an old story, Mr. Zaza. We cannot blame these years. No government likes it, that is, when these organizations are in power and are always criticized.
Yes, but if you look at it together, these are fake Facebook accounts, this is an attack, insulting politicians in the live and ...
OK. We are running out of time already and our, so to speak, broadcasting company will reprimand us for this. I would like to ask you again, that is, to repeat the question - do you have information in business, especially when it comes to such a big business, it is very important, so to speak, intelligence activities in the business environment, say someone else's interests, etc. You may not be able to name it, but do you have specific information about a particular company, such as from Russia, because we are talking about, say, American interests, and you are making such assessments as the authors of those letters from Washington? Do you have information about the specific interests of a particular company?
Pt. 15 (and final part)
Not specific, but we do not rule out that after the half-billion-dollar investment that we have discovered, there will be Rosneft, Gazprom, China`s CNPC, or SOCAR, would be happy to start developing all this without us.
It is clear, Mr. Zaza. To answer very briefly, as well as employees, we also know information about the protests concerning salary debt. What explanation can you give? They were talking about the 11-month debt. I know you have given an explanation in other media, but we also want to har this explanation from you.
I.e. As for the number of months and the number of people named, for some reason I am not included in this list, but I am also on the list, I have not received a salary for several months and I have not received a salary because we have been methodically drowned as a company for years. Bank accounts have been frozen, exports have been blocked, work permits have not been issued, various misinformation has been spread and we are still not paid, approx. 20 million VAT. You know what's going on around VAT, but they don’t pay us what ew have earned, and you know what? For 23 years, everyone have been getting their salaries on time, but with such pressure, when they freeze your account and block your work, it's very difficult for you to pay your salary at some point. As soon as the state fulfills its obligations, of course, everybody will get their own salary, including me.
Mr. Zaza, I am very sorry, we have to stop our conversation here. It was very interesting to talk to you and I would have continued the talks. Many more questions remain. We will keep an eye out and, if necessary, once again I would ask you to participate. Thank you very much. Zaza Mamulaishvili was a guest of “Radio Tavisufleba”s “Morning Talks”. He is the head of “Frontera Resources Georgia” and we have tried our best to get answers from him about this company. Many thanks to him, many thanks to our listeners and viewers for their attention and activity. “Radio Tavisufleba”s “Morning Talks” was led by me – Nino Gelashvili. Gocha Lezhava and Merab Nadirashvili were the directors of the program. Goodbye until tomorrow. “Radio Tavisufleba” is speaking.
Thank you very much
Transcript of - https://www.radiotavisupleba.ge/a/????-????????????-?????????-????????????-??-??????????????-??????/30639322.html
Translation #2 Posted 15/06/20
Here is the translation but I think it's old. The translator says it was uploaded yesterday but there is no date within the interview.
The speaker is Davit Zalkaniani (Minister of Foreign Affairs)
"Well, the response of Texas congressman is connected to “Frontera” case. I would like to state once again that the case is being heard in the Stockholm Arbitration Court, so any speculation on this subject is unacceptable. We are waiting for the decision of the Stockholm Arbitration Court and we will act in accordance with the decision that Stockholm will make. As for the harassment of American business, it is an absolute lie, it does not correspond to any reality. More than 270 American companies are registered in Georgia. There are no such claims from any company. On the contrary, we are talking to the United States about bringing our economic relations to the level we have in the field of defense and security, and we are talking about the prospect of opening up free trade opportunities. Therefore, trust me, there is no talk of any sanctions and neither will there be in the future. And, everything will be done so that the strategic partnership between the United States and Georgia is not endangered."
Going forward will ask the translator to help us check if recent or not.
Translation #3 TV interview 16/06 $41.20, POSTED 18/06
Journalist - Hello. Thank you so much for being with us. First of all, Michael Conaway, a permanent member of the Intelligence Committee who is a well-known congressman, joined the sanctions package today. Please explain the story of the sanctions. What is this package of sanctions? What procedures should be followed and for what purpose? And, how realistic it is to go through these procedures.
ZM - With great pleasure. Thank you very much. Michael Conaway is a very famous congressman. By the way, he is one of those who could have potentially become speakers for the United States Congress. This merger means that the number of supporters joining the fair business sanctioning act in Georgia is increasing day by day, which means that those former or current officials of the government who are undermining or undermined the free contracts with American companies, are affected by these sanctions. This does not apply to Georgia, but to those members of the government who ...
That is, point shots are fired
There will be point shots. This applies to those who have been members of the government in the past. By the way, it is very interesting ...
Here, for example, who can be considered in these sanctions? Who is the object of the sanctions?
Starting with the former prime ministers, ending with the current prime minister, ministers and their deputies, as it is in the bill of these sanctions..
So, are the names and surnames of these specific individuals not yet listed in this package?
The bill has not been listed yet, but the number of supporters is growing day by day, and at some point it may appear. However, before I move on to this "However", it is very important that Michael Conaway is also a member of the congressional committee that has just published a well-known study and report.
This report, in which he is portrayed as Putin's main ally and source of destabilization. Well, I don't know what a clear and crushing assessment this can be.
Of course. Also, don't forget that he is a permanent member of the Intelligence Committee, a permanent member of the Armed Forces. There are several such in that committee. While these discussions are not limited to a narrow party format, there are even bipartisan meetings in the committees. So it is really a very important document, as our Minister of Foreign Affairs noted.
Journalist - "It's very important and we need to find out where it hit." Where could that phrase come from?
ZM - That’s very interesting what you said. I have the impression that sometimes those who are responsible for dealing with this issue in Georgia do not follow what is happening in real life. This phrase was first voiced in Congress in 2016 when Congressman Steve Russell addressed Congress. It was then that Ivanishvili was described as a very close ally of Putin. He then mentioned these relations and the attempt to destabilize Georgia, which is now described in this document. Since then, for 4 years, such assessments have been constantly made, and it is a bit surprising when our diplomatic corps or government ...
Yes, like it came from nowhere. Like someone recorded it.
Accidentally recorded by a lobbyist who took the money for this. And, by the way, in addition to Russell, in 2016 there was a report by the Director of Intelligence of the United States, which also mentions these connections. It is mentioned that the Georgian Dream will violate the institutions in Georgia and will consolidate its power. That was 2 years ago. Now we see what is happening right? Then there were such records even in the legislation. Already hostile attitude, non-observance of the rule of law, hostile attitude towards American companies. So this is an assembled chain that has been going on like this for several years now and now this reaction of our government members as if they heard about it for the first time and they are surprised how it happened, is really surprising for me.
Especially the Minister of Foreign Affairs, who worked at the Embassy of Georgia in the United States and, as a rule, should know all the stages well. But they are blaming all the "National Movement" inside and outside of those who say something critical of the government, and here, too, surprisingly, there was a hint that the "National Movement" managed to hit the phrase in this very important report, as Zalkaniani says, which actually ended Ivanishvili. They have their own embassy, they have several lobbying companies that is paid millions of dollars. How did these lobbying companies fail to create a good image of Georgia in the Senate? What hinders this case?
By the way, they have hired very strong lobbying companies, but what they don’t have is that they don’t have the truth. This is a problem. They don't have the truth, so they can't bring that truth to the right place, otherwise lobbying companies and professionalism in those companies are definitely very high. One very interesting fact is that only Saudi Arabia and Georgia pay the highest prices for lobbying companies in Washington.