For Immediate Release

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Jayson O’Neill, (406) 200-8582

Bermuda-Based Big Oil Corporation’s Taxpayer Bailout Exemplifies Trump Administration’s Fear Of Transparency

Corporation Double-Dipped With Turkish Government; SEC Filing Contradicts CEO’s Account

WASHINGTON - Today, government watchdog Accountable.US is releasing new information on Bermuda-based TransAtlantic Petroleum after the corporation’s SEC filings revealed that they had been awarded a Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) bailout despite selling all its U.S. assets in 2007 and relocating to Bermuda. The research also found discrepancies in the amount reported by the oil corporation and that it had also doubled-dipped after receiving an additional windfall from the Turkish government.

“The Trump administration’s resistance to necessary transparency and accountability is directly related to the fact that large and even foreign-owned corporations that don’t reside on U.S. soil have cashed in on their corruption. Until Congress demands full transparency, this will continue to be an unmitigated disaster that is going to completely derail any semblance of an equitable economic recovery,” said Jayson O’Neill, Accountable.US spokesperson.

This past week, the administration raised questions about whether there would be full disclosure of relief fund recipients. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said the administration wouldn’t make PPP loan data available to the general public based on vague concerns about privacy, even though limited Small Business Administration (SBA) loan data has been public for decades. In fact, the most recent PPP data released by the SBA showed that 62% of private ‘Mining’ corporations, including oil and gas, and related activities, had been awarded nearly $4.5 billion in bailout funds. It is unclear if TransAtlantic is included in the total because it’s based in Bermuda. The Trump administration inexplicably made foreign-owned corporations eligible shortly before the program was launched.

Late on Friday night, the Trump administration announced that it would release basic information on PPP loan recipients of more than $150,000. This came in apparent response to growing public pressure on the administration to follow through with its promises to release all individual data. However, under the new, evolving disclosure guidelines, only 14% of the bailout recipients’ basic information will be released.

Unfortunately, TransAtlantic Petroleum isn’t the only foreign extractive corporation that has been awarded taxpayer monies through the SBA. While the program was billed as a lifeline for Main Street small businesses and their workers struggling to survive the historic COVID-19 health and economic crisis, Accountable.US, through its Trump Bailouts tracker, has exposed that that hasn’t always been the case.

The Bermuda-based oil corporation's second-quarter SEC filings showed that it had been awarded a $626,000 PPP bailout, but the corporation’s CEO clarified to shareholders that due to its numerous affiliate subsidiaries, TransAtlantic had indeed been awarded over $2 million in taxpayer funds. Astonishingly, in the same meeting, TransAtlantic’s CEO informed shareholders that it would be required to repay some of the bailouts, admitting that it may have been used for non-payroll expenses. TransAtlantic has compensated its billionaire CEO handsomely to the tune of nearly $4.5 million over the past two years.

In addition, TransAtlantic announced that they were double-dipping due to legislation passed by the Turkish government, which would result in an additional benefit of approximately $360,000. The corporation’s net income has been upside down for at least the last four years.

The ongoing tracking project by Accountable.US at TrumpBailouts.org documents the billion-dollar corporations and other large companies that have received taxpayer assistance under the CARES Act, and what advantages and assets they had going into the COVID-19 crisis that most small businesses could never access.

Previous controversial PPP grantees include oil corporations that spent millions on stock buybacks, an Indiana-based coal corporation with a former Trump official as its lobbyist, at least two companies that market their ability to ship U.S. manufacturing jobs overseas, major luxury hotel chains, a fashion model agency, and even the L.A. Lakers.

Learn more about the special interests fueling the Trump administration at Accountable.US and the administration’s ongoing efforts to carve out more big oil and coal bailouts at WesternValuesProject.org, an Accountable.US project focused on public lands conservation.

Bermuda-Based TransAtlantic Petroleum Omitted Key Details About The PPP Bailout It Got From The Trump Administration In Two Separate SEC Filings

Based In The Tax Haven Of Bermuda, Oil Corporation TransAtlantic Petroleum Reported Receiving US Taxpayer Funds Under The Paycheck Protection Program

During Q2 2020 The Trump Administration Allegedly Gave Oil And Natural Gas Company TransAtlantic Petroleum $626,000 Under The Federal Paycheck Protection Program…

TransAtlantic Is “An International Oil And Natural Gas Company.” “We are an international oil and natural gas company engaged in acquisition, exploration, development, and production. We have focused our operations in countries that have established, yet underexplored, petroleum systems, are net importers of petroleum, have an existing petroleum transportation infrastructure and provide favorable commodity pricing, royalty rates and tax rates to exploration and production companies.” [TransAtlantic Petroleum Ltd. 10-K, 03/25/20]

TransAtlantic Claimed It Received A $626,000 Bailout Via The Paycheck Protection Program. [TransAtlantic Petroleum Ltd. 2020 Annual Meeting June 5th 2020, accessed 06/05/20]

...Despite Originally Incorporating In Canada, Moving To Bermuda And Selling All Its US Assets In 2007.

TransAtlantic Was Originally Incorporated In Canada In 1985 And Then Moved To Bermuda In 2009. “TransAtlantic Petroleum was incorporated in 1985 under the laws of British Columbia, changed domicile to Alberta, Canada in 1997 and then to Bermuda in 2009.” [TransAtlantic Petroleum Ltd. History, accessed 06/05/20]

TransAtlantic Sold Its US Interests In 2007. “In 2007, the Company determined to exit its U.S. operations and focus on the development of its onshore international properties. To that end, TransAtlantic acquired additional exploration licenses in Turkey, converted a portion of its Moroccan reconnaissance license into two exploration permits, relinquished its UK North Sea licenses and sold its U.S. interests.” [TransAtlantic Petroleum Ltd. History, accessed 06/05/20]

While SEC Documents Filed Both Before And After The Shareholders Call Claim $626,000 In PPP Funding, TransAtlantic’s CEO N. Malone Mitchell Revealed In A June 5, 2020 Shareholder Call That The Company Actually Received At Least $2 Million In PPP Funding.

In An Official SEC Filing Submitted On June 4th, 2020, TransAtlantic Said It Had Borrowed $626,000 Under The Payment Protection Program….

As Part Of Its Official 8-K Filed On June 4th, 2020 To The SEC, The Company Said It Had Borrowed $626,000. “In the second quarter of 2020, we borrowed approximately $626,000 pursuant to the U.S. Paycheck Protection Program (the PPP) to cover certain payroll, benefit, and rent expenses. We have forecast that amounts borrowed or received pursuant to the PPP will be forgiven for cash flow purposes. New guidance on the criteria for forgiveness continues to be released, and we currently expect that a majority of the amounts borrowed will be forgiven and a yet-to-be-determined amount will need to be repaid. Additionally, in the second quarter of 2020, the Turkish government passed legislation permitting employers to reduce the working hours of employees, reducing payroll and benefit expenses, through the end of June 2020. The projected reduction in payroll and benefit expenses due to this Turkish legislation is approximately $360,000. Financial condition Cash flow timing uncertainty” [SEC Accession No. 0001564590-20-028413, 06/04/20, TRANSATLANTIC PETROLEUM LTD.; EX-99.1, 06/05/20]

...The Next Day, June 5th,Their CEO Admitted That The Company Had Actually Received Over $2 Million.

Mitchell Admitted That Because Of All The Companies Borrowed More Than $2 Million, They Would Be Subject To An Audit. “As most of you know, the rules have continued to change from the government. And obviously, there was quite an issue associated with public companies because, of course, according to our legislators, every public company has an infinite access to whatever capital they want. Likewise, they've declared that anybody who took a $2 million or greater loan would be subject to audit. Forgiveness, they expect it would take 5 months if you were not subject to audit. And then they defined $2 million loans as loans aggregated among any parties who own -- who are treated as affiliates. And I may be a little bit wrong, we've got a number of our lawyers and accountants in the room, but I think under any of the classifications, all of our companies together, because of our ownership, will be considered an affiliate. And because all of the companies in combination borrowed over $2 million, we will be subject to an audit. So there is an increased uncertainty about both the time to forgiveness, the amount of forgiveness and being caught up in some political deal that says, you're too big, you have some other access or you're public, that does not make that quite clear as it was in the days where the applications were made and the money was borrowed. So that's an issue certainly.” [TransAtlantic Petroleum Ltd Annual Shareholders Meeting June 5th, 2020, accessed 06/12/20]

TransAtlantic Would Submit The Same Filing Again On June 8th, 2020, Stating The Company Had Received $626,000 Under The PPP.

As Part Of Its June 8th, 2020 Filing, TransAtlantic Resubmitted The Same Exhibit Stating It Had Received $626,000 Under The PPP. [SEC Accession No. 0001564590-20-028641, 06/08/20, TRANSATLANTIC PETROLEUM LTD.; EX-99.1, 06/04/20]

On The Same Shareholders Call, The TransAtlantic CEO Admitted It “Had An Amount” They Knew “Would Have To Be Repaid,” Suggesting They Had Spent PPP Funding On Things They “Knew Wouldn’t Be Allowed Under The Context”

TransAtlantic CEO Mitchell Said “It Is Extremely Likely That We Will Have To Repay A Portion Of That Loan,” Suggesting They Had Spent The Money On Non-Payroll Expenses

On A Shareholder Call On June 5th, 2020, Mitchell Said TransAtlantic Had “An Amount That [They] Knew Would Have To Be Repaid “Budgeted To Not Have To Repay” It Was “Extremely Likely” The Company Would Have To Repay The Loan. “In the second quarter, and following to the next point, and this would certainly affect our cash balances. In the second quarter of 2020, we borrowed approximately $626,000 pursuant to the U.S. Paycheck Protection Program, called the PPP. And under that basis, we were allowed, the borrowers, 2.5 months of payroll. We have now completed the early qualifying part of that. Now recently, in the last week, both the House and the Senate have passed amendments to that program, where there's an extended period of time and there may be a little bit different left. It is extremely likely that we will have to repay a portion of that money. For cash flow purposes, we have budgeted to not have to repay what was not -- what we did -- what we knew wouldn't be allowed under the context of when we borrowed it. So we had an amount that we knew would have to be repaid. We have intended to repay that immediately following the application for forgiveness from the PPP.” [TransAtlantic Petroleum Ltd Annual Shareholders Meeting June 5th, 2020, accessed 06/12/20]

In Addition To U.S. Government Funding, TransAtlantic Double Dipped In Governmental COVID Bailouts Funds With An Additional $360,000 In Benefits From The Turkish Government

SEC Filings Show TransAtlantic Also Received $360,000 In Payroll And Benefit Expenses From Legislation Passed By The Turkish Government

As Part Of Its Official 8-K Filed On June 4th, 2020 To The SEC, The Company Said Also Benefited To The Tune Of $360,000 From COVID-19 Bailout Legislation Passed By The Turkish Government. “In the second quarter of 2020, we borrowed approximately $626,000 pursuant to the U.S. Paycheck Protection Program (the PPP) to cover certain payroll, benefit, and rent expenses. We have forecast that amounts borrowed or received pursuant to the PPP will be forgiven for cash flow purposes. New guidance on the criteria for forgiveness continues to be released, and we currently expect that a majority of the amounts borrowed will be forgiven and a yet-to-be-determined amount will need to be repaid. Additionally, in the second quarter of 2020, the Turkish government passed legislation permitting employers to reduce the working hours of employees, reducing payroll and benefit expenses, through the end of June 2020. The projected reduction in payroll and benefit expenses due to this Turkish legislation is approximately $360,000. Financial condition Cash flow timing uncertainty” [SEC Accession No. 0001564590-20-028413, 06/04/20, TRANSATLANTIC PETROLEUM LTD.; EX-99.1, 06/05/20]

TransAtlantic’s Billionaire CEO Has Been Paid Millions In Compensation While Attempting To Acquire All Of The Company’s Shares

TransAtlantic Paid Its CEO And Chairman Of The Board More Than $2 Million In Total Compensation For Each Year Of 2018 And 2019….

In 2019, TransAtlantic CEO And Chairman Of The Board, N. Malone Mitchell, Received A Salary Of $229,082, Stock Awards Totalling $72,409 And Other Compensation Totalling $1,748,265 For A Total Of $2,047,756.  [TransAtlantic Holdings Ltd., DEF 14A, 04/20/20]

In 2018, TransAtlantic CEO And Chairman Of The Board, N. Malone Mitchell, Received A Salary Of $276,863, Stock Awards Totalling $50,725 And Other Compensation Totalling $2,101,837 For A Total Of $2,429,425.  [TransAtlantic Holdings Ltd., DEF 14A, 04/20/20]

...Even Though He Is Reportedly A Billionaire.

According to Forbes Magazine, Mitchell’s Network Was $1.4 Billion In 2011. [Forbes, accessed 06/05/20]

Mitchell Founded The Mitchell Group In 2007. [TransAtlantic Petroleum Ltd. Investor Presentation, accessed 06/05/20]

According To Its Website: “The Mitchell Group (MG) Strongly Believes In The ‘Vertigration’ Management Control Style And Strategy In Business Operations. Mg Has Adopted This Approach By Layering Exploration, Production And Oil Field Services Under One Company.” [Mitchell Group, accessed 06/05/20]

TransAtlantic Petroleum Was Incorporated In Canada And Sold All US Assets And Moved To Bermuda In 2007

Malone Mitchell And The Mitchell Group Offered To Acquire 100% Of TransAtlantic’s Shares. “On April 21, 2020, the special committee of the board of directors (the ‘Committee’) of TransAtlantic Petroleum, Ltd. (the ‘Company’”) received an unsolicited offer (the ‘Offer’) from N. Malone Mitchell 3rd, the Company’s chief executive officer and chairman of the board of directors, on behalf of a group of the Company’s current shareholders (the “Mitchell Group”), to acquire 100% of the Company’s outstanding common shares, subject to certain conditions. A copy of the Offer is attached hereto as Exhibit 99.1 and incorporated herein by reference. The Committee is in the process of hiring a financial advisor to assist with its review and evaluation of the Offer and any other offers that might be received. There is no assurance that the Offer will result in a sale of the Company or any other transaction.” [TransAtlantic Petroleum Ltd. 8-K, 04/23/20]

...Despite Originally Incorporating In Canada, Moving To Bermuda And Selling All Its US Assets In 2007...

TransAtlantic Was Originally Incorporated In Canada In 1985 And Then Moved To Bermuda In 2009. “TransAtlantic Petroleum was incorporated in 1985 under the laws of British Columbia, changed domicile to Alberta, Canada in 1997 and then to Bermuda in 2009.” [TransAtlantic Petroleum Ltd. History, accessed 06/05/20]

TransAtlantic Decided To Exit From The United States In 2007. “From 2005 through 2007, the Company focused on the United States and divesting its Nigerian property, which was sold in 2005. TransAtlantic acquired an exploration license in Morocco, Romania, Turkey, and the UK North Sea during this time. Concurrently, the Company acquired properties in Texas, Oklahoma and Louisiana. In 2007, the Company determined to exit its U.S. operations and focus on the development of its onshore international properties. To that end, TransAtlantic acquired additional exploration licenses in Turkey, converted a portion of its Moroccan reconnaissance license into two exploration permits, relinquished its UK North Sea licenses and sold its U.S. interests.” [TransAtlantic Petroleum Ltd. History, accessed 06/05/20]

...With More Than 80 Percent Of Its Employees Located Abroad In Turkey And Bulgaria.

TransAtlantic Has 117 Employees In Turkey, Five In Bulgaria And 25 In Texas. “As of December 31, 2019, we employed 117 people in Turkey, 25 people in Addison, Texas and 5 people in Bulgaria.” [TransAtlantic Petroleum Ltd. 10-K, 03/25/20]

TransAtlantic’s Oil Is Mostly Produced In Turkey And Sold To Turkish Entities

According To TransAtlantic, Nearly 98% Of Its 2019 Revenues Came From Oil Sold To A Turkish Entity, TUPRAS. “During 2019, 78.5% of our oil production, which is U.S. Dollar indexed, was concentrated in the Selmo and Bahar oil fields in Turkey. TUPRAS purchases substantially all of our oil production. During 2019, we sold $65.8 million of oil to TUPRAS, representing 97.7% of our total revenues. We sell all of our Southeastern Turkey oil to TUPRAS pursuant to a domestic crude oil purchase and sale agreement. Under the purchase and sale agreement, TUPRAS purchases oil produced by us that is delivered to TPAO’s Batman tanks from which it is pumped to a TUPRAS vessel at the Dörtyol plant via the national pipeline operated by BoruHatlari ile Petrol Tasima A.S. (“BOTAŞ”). [...] No other purchasers of our oil accounted for more than 10% of our total revenues.” [TransAtlantic Petroleum Ltd. 10-K, 03/25/20]

During 2018 and 2019, TransAtlantic Sold $65.8 Million And $68.2 Million Of Oil To TUPRAS, A “Privately-Owned Oil Refinery In Turkey.” “During the years ended December 31, 2019 and 2018, we sold $65.8 million and $68.2 million, respectively, of oil to Türkiye Petrol Rafinerileri A.Ş. (“TUPRAS”), a privately-owned oil refinery in Turkey, which represented approximately 97.7%, and 96.4% of our total revenues, respectively.” [TransAtlantic Petroleum Ltd. 10-K, 03/25/20]

“During 2019, Substantially All Of Our Oil Production Was Concentrated In Southeastern Turkey…” [TransAtlantic Petroleum Ltd. 10-K, 03/25/20]

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