A breaking report from the Daily Mail alleges that then-Vice President Joe Biden visited Ukraine to push for an increase in fracking just three days after his son, Hunter, joined the board of infamous Ukrainian energy firm Burisma.
Hunter Biden officially joined Burisma’s board on April 18, 2014; three days later, Joe Biden headed to the country and enlisted a ‘senior’ member of his team to speak with reporters on Air Force 2 about his visit.
Citing Mike McCormick, who was a stenographer from the White House, the Daily Mail says that it was now-Biden National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan who addressed a gaggle of reporters on the veep’s energy-centric trip.
“Sullivan came to the back and did a briefing as a ‘senior administration official.’ They wanted to publicize what he said, they weren’t afraid of it. But as a senior administration official, so no name attached to it,” McCormick said.
“He talked about what Joe was going to do with energy security for Ukraine,” he added.
Addressing reporters, Sullivan described the goals of Biden’s suspiciously-timed visit.
“[Biden] will speak about both the short- and long-term energy situation in Ukraine,” Sullivan reportedly said.
“As he arrives, there will also be a team on the ground from the United States, a team of experts working on the reverse flow issue. That team will be in Kyiv and then will travel also to Slovakia, Poland and Hungary to help address the issue of reversing the flow of natural gas to provide Ukraine with some measure of short-term supply of natural gas as they look to replenish their stores,” said Sullivan.
“But also he’ll discuss with them medium- and long-term strategies to boost conventional gas production, and also to begin to take advantage of the unconventional gas reserves that are in Ukraine.”
McCormick, now a conservative author, says he now understands clearly what the true intentions for Biden’s visit were.
“Now that I’ve looked in Hunter’s laptop, I realize that Sullivan was telling the press we’re going to be helping Ukraine’s fracking industry,” McCormick said.
The Daily Mail reports that Biden’s lobbying in Ukraine led to a massive windfall of $400 million in revenue for Burisma.
According to Burisma’s website, it ramped up production from 100 million cubic meters in 2010 to 1.3 billion cubic meters in 2018 – when it generated revenues of at least $400 million, according to a Reuters estimate.
In 2019 Burisma held 35 licenses for hydrocarbon production in Ukraine’s main oil and gas basins.
According to energy industry publication KeyFactsEnergy.com it began using hydraulic fracturing, known as fracking, in 2016 and by May 2019 used the technology in 10% of its wells.
A Burisma executive explained how the company benefited from the help of US expertise in Ukraine, in a 2017 interview with Ukrainian trade publication Nefterynok.
Head of country operations Taras Burdeinyi said Burisma partnered with US firms Schlumberger and ProPetro Services for fracking in Ukraine, allowing it to grow the ‘largest modern rig fleet’ in the country, three years after Biden’s intervention.