Gazprom may hire Deloitte and Touche to audit its financial statements, sacking PricewaterhouseCoopers after some shareholders in the world's top natural gas producer criticized the firm for failing to uncover asset transfers to rivals, Izvestia said, citing an unidentified government official. The company's board will decide which auditor to recommend to Gazprom shareholders when they meet on June 28th, the paper said. The shareholders meeting will pick a new board, which is not expected to reelect the board Chairman Rem Vyakhirev, the paper said. Gazprom board member Boris Fyodorov led calls for the company to sack PwC because it did not reveal damage caused by transactions with Itera Holding, Russia's second largest gas company, which cost Gazprom “billions of dollars,” according to a Russian lawsuit filed by Hermitage Capital Management in April. PwC, the world's largest accounting firm, has rejected the criticism. The Gazprom Chief Executive Officer Alexei Miller has been seeking to regain control of assets lost during Vyakhirev's nine year term as CEO at Russia’s biggest firm. President Vladimir Putin fired Vyakhirev last May. The government is Gazprom's biggest shareholder, with a thirty eight percent holding.
Near the United Nations Glass Palace in New York, there is a metallic sculpture entitled "Evil Defeated by Good", representing Saint George transfixing a dragon with his lance. It was donated by the USSR in 1990 to celebrate the INF Treaty concluded with the USA in 1987