Lithuanian municipalities are allegedly buying sanctioned Russian, Belarusian timber

  • 2023-04-11
  • BNS/TBT Staff

VILNIUS – Lithuanian municipalities and municipal establishments and schools may have purchased sanctioned wood fuel from Russia and Belarus, Siena, a Lithuanian according to the investigative journalism center, reports.

It claims Andeta, a Salcininkai-based company that imports wood pellets from Kazakhstan, has won public procurement tenders worth more than 1.5 million euros since September.

In September, the company started importing wood pellets from Kazakhstan, and its supplier is DTRA, a Kazakh company registered in September. Siena claims it was possibly set up to circumvent the existing sanctions for Russia and Belarus and it has only several employees.

Ana Burinskaja, head of Andeta, told Siena the company checks its suppliers and, therefore, does not import from Russia or Belarus.

Siena and its partners have learnt that Russian and Belarusian timber may be entering the European Union from Kyrgyzstan and Kazakhstan via sanction circumvention schemes. 

Investigators have found that Qazfancom, a birch plywood supplier and producer established in Uralsk, Kazakhstan, in May, is importing large quantities of wood products from two Russian plywood production plants in Russia's Voronezh region. Similar volumes of plywood from Uralsk are moving to Western countries, including Poland, Lithuania and Estonia.