Putin chides Nornickel, orders law change after Arctic fuel spill

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Russian President Vladimir Putin chided the billionaire boss of Norilsk Nickel on Friday over a huge Arctic fuel spill and ordered changes to the law to try to prevent such a disaster from happening again.

FILE PHOTO: President and Chairman of the Board of MMC Norilsk Nickel Vladimir Potanin attends a session of the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum , Russia June 6, 2019. REUTERS/Maxim Shemetov/File Photo

Putin has declared a state of emergency in the region and complained of what he said was a bungled state response. “If you had changed it on time there would not have been this ecological damage and the company would not have had to foot these costs. Study this as closely as possible inside the company,” Putin told Potanin during the televised meeting.

Shares in Nornickel, the world’s leading nickel and palladium producer, were up 3% in Moscow after the meeting, having previously been hit by fallout from the disaster.Putin’s spokesman earlier on Friday dismissed the idea of the government ousting Potanin after a Russian lawmaker said he should go following the spill.

 

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