Metalexportimport, the bankruptcy of foreign trade

The Metalexportimport company was the pearl of Ceauşescu’s regime foreign trade activities. During 1988-1989, it exported steel and aluminum worth of two billion dollars yearly. The company is now in bankruptcy. In 2007, the control over the foreign trade company was taken over by Rosatomstroy, a company part of the Russian group Atomstroy. The Russians from Rosatomstroy were involved in the dismantling of the Siberian Seversk nuclear reactor. The Atomstroy group is run by Russian Serghei Shmatko, former Energy Minister during 2008-2012. The Moscow government was run back then by Vladimir Putin who renounced the presidential office in Dmitri Medvedev’s favor. Metalexportimport SA is also a name in the longest judicial process in Romanian history. A trial that lasted 30 years, from 1983 until 2013. In the early 1980, Metalexportimport supplied USA based IMC with Galaţi manufactured plate. The transaction was made by means of two companies: Otto Wolff America and Otto Wolff Germania. But, in 1982, IMC became bankrupt and the Romanian company suffered losses of over 18 million dollars. A year later, Metalexportimport filed a case at the Sector 1 Courthouse, asking the money to be paid by means of the companies that managed the transaction: the Otto Wolff group of companies, Comsteel Elveția, France headquartered Cideco SA, C. Itoh and Cardinal Shipping, both of them USA based. In 1998, Metalexportimport won the first instance case at the Bucharest Courthouse. The court’s decision was challenged by the companies involved in the transaction until the High Court of Cassation and Justice. At the end of 2000, the Supreme Court allowed the appeals. Finally, in the summer of 2013, Metalexportimport lost the case on a definitive sentence of the Supreme Court.