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PM presents Action Plan "Recovery for Ukraine" to US business and investment circles
26.09.2014 | 01:15
Department of Information and Communication of the Secretariat of the CMU

On Thursday, September 25, Prime Minister of Ukraine Arseniy Yatsenyuk met with U.S. representatives of business and investment circles in New York, where the PM is on a working visit.

During the meeting, Arseniy Yatsenyuk presented the government Action Plan "Recovery for Ukraine".

Moreover, the parties agreed on the specific practical support of government reforms. American companies shall provide expert assistance in the implementation of the Government's plans aimed at tackling corruption, economic liberalization and simplification of the regulatory environment.

"We are facing both challenges and opportunities. Having a revolution, a war and two elections, it is not easy to manage the process and to implement reforms. But despite this, we have done our utmost to stabilize the financial situation in Ukraine and to pave the way for further reforms," the PM stated.

Arseniy Yatsenyuk stressed that the Government of Ukraine had adopted several packages aimed at austerity.

He stressed that the Government had done its utmost to stabilize the situation in Ukraine: "Weve signed agreements with the IMF, the World Bank as well as the European Investment Bank. Thanks to this support, we are fulfilling our obligations and will do so in today's circumstances. It is important for the Government to have the reputation and the confidence of international investors."

The key task now, according to him, is to solve the security situation in the country and to achieve "de-escalation of the armed conflict, launched by Russia a few months ago."

The Prime Minister reminded that in a month Ukraine will hold pre-term parliamentary election: "After the election we should have a new Parliament and a new coalition, which will be a pro-European one and will maintain reforms."

A key challenge for Ukraine, according to Arseniy Yatsenyuk, is to speed up the implementation of necessary reforms.

According to the PM, the key reform is an anti-corruption one. Arseniy Yatsenyuk said that Ukraine Government had submitted to the Parliament a bill that provides for the establishment of the National Anti-Corruption Bureau, the anti-corruption strategy, change of monitoring system of civil servants - "not those who are working at the lower levels, but those holding the highest positions ranging from the President to the Prime Minister and members of the Government."

Secondly, the PM called on to eliminate corruption in state companies. "The best way to do so is to privatize them," underlined Arseniy Yatsenyuk, noting that the Government had already submitted to the Parliament a draft law on privatization.

He appealed to the representatives of the investment circles of the United States: "We look forward to seeing you as investors who shall purchase Ukrainian state-owned companies."

Thirdly, according to the PM, should be a tax reform: "We want to minimize the number of taxes and increase tax rates. But on the other hand, there are the issues of public expenditures, a huge hole in the pension fund. We should decide how to cover our social programs. We are seeking to find a balanced solution. "

"The Government has proposed a tax reform and expects the Parliament to adopt and in 2015 we will have a new tax regime," he said.

Arseniy Yatsenyuk sees the agriculture and energy sector as stimuli for the Ukrainian economy.

He called on the business circles to invest in these sectors of the Ukrainian economy and informed about a series of talks related to the issue, which had been held between the Government of Ukraine and the Government of the United States and the EU: "If we work together, we can play a major economic role and together have economic benefits."

"We are very strong in the field of agriculture. And we can even become a leading state in the agricultural sector, if we co-operate primarily with the United States and several EU countries," the Prime Minister noted.

He recalled that Ukraine had ratified the Association Agreement (AA/DCFTA): "It has been agreed by the European Commission that the implementation of the EU-Ukraine free trade agreement (DCFTA) will be postponed until 31 December 2015. The decision has enabled Ukraine to enter the European market without restrictions, and weve got a year additional protection for the Ukrainian market."

"Being resolved in the implementation of the AA, as well as in making the Ukrainian economy competitive, I want to express the political will of the Government - we will implement the DCFTA and move on. This is the only way to improve the Ukrainian economy," the Prime Minister said.

"Of course, we can lose something in the short term. But as to the long-term perspective we shall manage to get much more", Arseniy Yatsenyuk is confident.

The energy is another stimulus for the economy. According to the PM, "its both a challenge, and an opportunity." He reminded that on September 26 will be held tripartite negotiations over gas supplies with Ukraine, EU and Russia. He also noted that the Ukrainian side had filed a lawsuit against Russian Gazprom: "We need about a year to get the Stockholm Arbitration Courts decision. But we believe it is the right way how to solve the energy issue and end the debate with Russian Gazprom.

According to him, Ukraine needs extra 5 billion cubic meters of natural gas to meet the needs of this winter: "But we have a good chance against the winter even with 17 billion cubic meters of natural gas in Ukrainian storage facilities."

Arseniy Yatsenyuk reminded that the Government had provided reverse gas supplies from Slovakia, Hungary and Poland, thus replacing approximately 60% of Russian gas.

 

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