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12.05.2021

To attention of Astana-Finance JSC Dollar Notes Holders & GDRs Holders!



To Holders of GDRs,

To Holders of Dollar Notes of

The Bank of New York Mellon

 

 

As you know, Astana-finance JSC (hereinafter referred to as the Company), in accordance with the restructuring documents, has obligations to repay USD 50 million Recovery Notes and to pay corporate income tax in the amount of KZT 26.4 billion (US $ 66 million) accrued in 2015 as a result of the cancellation of the Company's obligations under the restructuring.

As we previously informed, the Company faces various difficulties in the process of carrying out activities aimed to fulfill the above obligations. But despite these difficulties for the Company, the fulfillment of its obligations under the restructuring documents remains the highest priority and the Company will make every effort to achieve this goal and protect the interests of note holders.

The reason for this appeal to the Holders of Dollar Notes and GDRs was a question regarding liabilities for the payment of corporate income tax in the amount of 26.4 billion tenge (66 million US dollars) to the state budget of the Republic of Kazakhstan in accordance with the requirements of the Tax Code.

On May 6, 2021, the Company received a letter from the tax authorities of the city of Nur- Sultan on considering the possibility of paying the specified tax to the state budget.

The specified tax amount arose as a result of the Company's debt restructuring in 2015, that is, from the forgiveness of part of the debt by Creditors. At the same time, I would like to note that in 2013 the Committee of International Creditors of the Company expressed bewilderment and dissatisfaction with this issue and sent a letter to the address of the state bodies of Kazakhstan on the need to exempt from the specified tax by analogy with second-tier banks of the Republic of Kazakhstan, including BTA Bank.

However, the issue of tax exemption remained unresolved and all the Company's attempts to resolve it by amending the tax legislation of the Republic of Kazakhstan were unsuccessful. Over the course of several years, the company has repeatedly applied to the Government, the Ministry of National Economy, and the Ministry of Finance of the Republic of Kazakhstan, but received an official letter of refusal stating that the provision of the Tax Code on the imposition of corporate income tax on income from the write-off of obligations is generally established, and therefore the provision of benefits The company is not supported.

We have repeatedly informed that the Company does not have and is not expected to have funds to fulfill the tax liability under consideration. In this state of affairs, the next possible step on the part of the tax authority may be the arrest of the accounts of the Company, write-off of what is, as a result of the freezing of the Company's activities, and due to insufficient funds to fulfill the disputed tax obligation, the compulsory issue of declared shares of the Company to cover the entire tax debts under Article 32 of the Law of the Republic of Kazakhstan “On Joint Stock Companies”  and Article 121 of the Tax Code of the Republic of Kazakhstan.

Based on the foregoing, in order to prevent extremely undesirable consequences for the Company, we ask you to consider the possibility of contacting the current international shareholders with the Government of the Republic of Kazakhstan with a request to resolve the issue of the affected tax liability by amending tax law.

 

Regards,

Chairman of the board                                                                        I. Usmanov


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