August 12, 2022

Below hearth: Former German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder

Lord Barker lastly stepped down from En+ following stress from senior politicians as Russia’s assault on Ukraine reached its twelfth day.

The previous local weather change minister beneath David Cameron mentioned he would depart his position as govt chairman on the aluminium firm, which was based by oligarch Oleg Deripaska, after a brief handover.

And gold miner Polymetal – one of many largest Russian companies listed in London – noticed a unprecedented board exodus.

Stepping down: Former local weather change minister Lord Barker (pictured with David Cameron) is to go away his position as govt chairman at Russian aluminium agency En+

In a terse one-line assertion, Polymetal mentioned British chairman Ian Cockerill and all 5 unbiased administrators had give up en masse. However a slew of Britons and high-profile figures within the West are staying on at Russian companies regardless of widespread condemnation.

These embody former German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder, ex-London Inventory Trade (LSE) boss Xavier Rolet, Sir Michael Peat and Roger Munnings.

Strain ramped up final night time as politicians and enterprise figures urged anyone left to resign instantly.

Barker, 55, give up after coming beneath heavy hearth from senior politicians reminiscent of Sir Iain Duncan Smith, Defence Secretary Ben Wallace and businessman-turned-campaigner Invoice Browder. 

Barker had insisted final week he wouldn’t resign. However the announcement yesterday follows weekend experiences that the corporate is contemplating spinning off its worldwide enterprise right into a separate group – which it’s thought he would possibly lead. 

The previous MP can also be dealing with calls to be stripped of his peerage, a uncommon transfer that has not been enacted because the First World Struggle.

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Barker was a businessman earlier than he grew to become a Conservative MP in 2001, growing shut relationships with quite a lot of Russian oil firms.

He served as a minister in Cameron’s authorities earlier than quitting as an MP in 2015.

Barker had been at En+ since 2017, when he started a PR and lobbying allure offensive for the corporate that led to the US lifting earlier sanctions on the agency.

A variety of Britons have already resigned from boards, together with James Rutherford from Roman Abramovich-backed steelmaker Evraz and former Tesco director Richard Brasher from meals retailer X5 Retail.

Joan MacNaughton, an ex-civil servant who served as deputy chief of employees to Margaret Thatcher, mentioned final week she would depart En+. However one other Briton stays on the En+ board.

Carl Hughes, a former Deloitte employee who’s a Home of Laity member for the Church of England, has but to resign.

Layla Moran, Liberal Democrat MP and international affairs spokesman, mentioned: ‘It’s proper that Lord Barker has stood down from this place which had change into indefensible in view of Putin’s horrific invasion of Ukraine.’

Final night time Roger Barker, director of coverage and company governance on the Institute of Administrators (IoD), mentioned: ‘It’s nice to see that so many British administrators have taken the choice to relinquish their positions on Russian boards.

‘In help of the elemental values of freedom and democracy, we propose that each one remaining administrators ought to rethink their involvement in governance roles within the Russian financial system.’

The IoD final week mentioned it was ‘untenable’ for Britons to be on Russian boards, in an uncommon intervention for the enterprise physique.

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Financier and anti-Russia campaigner Invoice Browder mentioned: ‘Anyone who hasn’t stepped down is successfully compromising our nationwide safety for their very own private monetary pursuits. To be able to cease Putin it must be economically remoted.’