Friday, October 31, 2008
In 2009, the level of unemployment in Ukraine may grow to 7.7%, Labor and Social Policy Minister Liudmyla Denysova told a board meeting Friday.
Worsening of the situation in labor market will start in December, she says.
By this day, over 822,000 people have an incomplete workday, and over 25,000 people were sent on unpaid leave. Exactly those people may be sacked in the first place, the minister says. The labor market is likely to have 1.4 million jobless people, 538,000 being already registered at the State Employment Service, with 198,000 vacancies available.
To employ people who are expected to lose their jobs, it is necessary to adapt the system of professional training to the new market conditions, Denysova says.
She says there will be new investment programs in construction and agro-industrial complex. So, the unemployed will be retrained precisely for those industries.
The minister also noted that the set sizes of material payments to the jobless will be preserved, and their financing from the unemployment insurance fund will continue in a full volume. At the same time, spending on the fund maintenance will be reduced.
The expected volume of the labor remuneration fund will total UAH 294 billion by the end of the year, with the planned UAH 322 billion (UAH 5.76 / USD 1), i.e. 8% less than planned.
The Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine will "insistently recommend" energy generation companies of the Energy Company of Ukraine to use thermal coal extracted from state-run mines alone.
According to Coal Industry Minister Viktor Poltavets, the Prime Minister will ink the relevant instruction on Saturday.
By October 29, storehouses of thermoelectric power plants accumulated 3.479 million tons of coal, 2.486 million tons of which was kept at state-run generation companies, and 0.923 million tons at limited liability company Vostokenergo, the fuel and energy ministry says.
The energy ministry planned to pile up at electric power plants 3.5 million tons of coal by November 1. The volume of coal currently kept in the storehouses is 40.5% or one million tons more than by this date last year.
Against the background of the predicted reduction of energy consumption in Ukraine in the 4th quarter of 2008 (by 1.3%) and the 1st quarter of 2009 (by 0.9%) due to production decline in metallurgy and chemical industry, generation volumes at TPPs may reduce, market participants say. Nuclear power plants will continue functioning, and TPPs will thus cut coal spending.
Meeuwes Y. Brouwer, Counsellor for Agriculture, Nature and Food Quality of the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands in Kyiv sees a great future in the cooperation between the Dutch Agricultural Ministry and Kherson's regional authorities (South Ukraine), he was speaking in Kherson during a meeting of Ukrainian and Dutch agrarians.
Participating in the event were representatives of Dutch companies dealing with growing vegetables, fruits, garden plants, as well as representatives of Ukraine's farm sector.
Meeuwes Brouwer said that both the Netherlands and Ukraine may benefit from such trade mission. It is important that Kherson local authorities back business development in the region.
"In the Netherlands, authorities constantly support the agricultural sector. The support, in my opinion, means first of all, educational programs and scientific-research activity. We feel assistance of the Chairman and deputies of the Kherson Regional Council. So I see a great future in the cooperation between the Dutch Agricultural Ministry and Kherson's regional authorities," he underscored.
Ukrainian Economy Minister Bohdan Danylyshyn has said that Belgian investment in Ukraine grew in 2008.
He was speaking during a meeting of the first Ukrainian-Belgian commission on trade-economic and financial cooperation in Kyiv on Friday.
Bohdan Danylyshyn said that Belgium had invested USD 44 million in the country by July 1, 2008.
The minister also said that 107 Ukrainian companies currently operate with Belgian assets.
He promised Belgian colleagues that Ukraine would create all of the necessary conditions for a favorable investment climate with the goal of attracting foreign investment.
According to the Economy Ministry, the trade between Ukraine and Belgium totaled over USD 1 billion in 2008.
Bohdan Danylyshyn said that electrical machines and equipment, textile and oil refined products had been mainly exported over the period.
He also said that cauldrons, machines, technical equipment, chemical and pharmaceutical products had been mainly imported from Belgium to Ukraine.
President Victor Yushchenko met today with Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Macedonia Antonio Milososki.
At the meeting sides have discussed bilateral cooperation between Ukraine and Macedonia in such fields as politics, trade, economy, military, etc.
Much of their attention President Yushchenko and Foreign Minister Milososki dedicated to discussing preparation to a meeting of a joint commission on trade-economic cooperation and a joint committee on free trade agreement implementation.
Beside that the sides discussed joint cultural and humanitarian projects such as arrangement in 2009 Ukrainian Culture Days in Macedonia and visa versa; opening of a monument to Taras Shevchenko in Skopje; Ukrainian language teaching in Skopje Ss. Cyril and Methodius University, etc.
President Yushchenko also affirmed to Minister Milososki his intention to visit Macedonia soon.
Thursday, October 30, 2008
President Victor Yushchenko met today with Prosecutor General Oleksandr Medvedko.
At the meeting Prosecutor general reported to President on investigation of a number of loud cases such as events around ‘Prominvestbank’, events in Central Election Commission, illegal appointments of judges on administrative posts, etc.
Beside that Oleksandr Medvedko acquainted Victor Yushchenko with investigation of Dnipropetrovsk prosecutor V. Shuba’s death.
The Fuel and Energy Ministry considers possibility of limiting electric energy imports from Russia or a complete refusal from it, this issue was raised by heads of the SkhidEnergo Company. They explained it by the fact that as a result of a sharp rise in the dollar rate purchases of electric energy became unprofitable, the Delo newspaper writes.
"Due to the situation on the electric energy market and taking into consideration current coal stocks at storage facilities of thermoelectric power stations, as well as the volumes of reduction of electric energy supplies by industrial enterprises, the situation has been analyzed in detail", Fuel and Energy press secretary Fent Di asserts. "But for today, no decisions on the present issue have been taken yet".
Electric energy import from Russia started in September this year. The Fuel and Energy Ministry explained such a need by a deficit of own energy resources caused by its growing use and by the fact that the second power generating unit at the Khelnytskyi NPP stopped its work for emergency repair. In addition, according to the ministry's information, Russian electric energy was less expensive compared to Ukrainian electric energy by 12 percent.
However, in September the situation has changed in the market . It was affected by a crisis in the metallurgical sector. Use of electric energy dropped by seven percent over the current month as compared to October last year. Therefore, today Ukraine is able to solve problems with electric energy supply independently.
Since November, the state foreign-economic enterprise UkrInterEnergo will continue fulfillment of a contract on electric energy exports to Poland, Fuel and Energy Ministry's press secretary Fent Di informed.
According to him, reduction of exports has been considered due to coal imbalance at storage facilities of thermoelectric power stations. Since the situation has changed now, it is planned to increase export supplies.
Presently, according to Fent Di, the export volume to Poland entered the former level, 200 megawatt, while in early October it was reduced to 100 megawatt.
According to the Fuel and Energy Ministry, export to Poland was resumed in April 2008, 612 million kWh of electric energy was exported over this time.
In early October, Fuel and Energy Minister Yuriy Prodan stated about possibility of reduction of Ukrainian electric energy exports to Poland since November 1 due to unprofitableness caused by disparity in export prices and prices existing on the domestic wholesale electric energy market.
At a press conference in Donetsk President Victor Yushchenko stressed that early parliamentary election date depends much on the Verkhovna Rada approving its financing.
“Financing of the election is in authority of the Parliament today; therefore it is them, who have the answer to questions about the date of the election”, - said Victor Yushchenko.
He also stressed assurance that the Parliament would be able to give a final answer to the question.
After their bilateral meeting in Donetsk, President Victor Yushchenko and President Lech Kaczynski of Poland opened the 9th Ukraine-Poland Economic Forum.
Speaking at the event President Yushchenko praised achievements of Ukraine and Poland in their trade-economic cooperation growth. According to him there are currently 1214 enterprises in Ukraine with Polish investments and 8 companies in Poland that Ukraine invests into with the latter number growing.
Pointing to the fact that so far Polish side has been investing most in western Ukraine enterprises President Yushchenko invited Polish businessmen to cooperation with industrial companies in the east of our country.
President Yushchenko also suggested expanding advertisement of Ukraine’s enterprises business attractiveness so that Polish businessmen became better familiar with Ukrainian markets potential.
He separately stressed that stirring up cooperation between Ukrainian and Polish businesses brings our country closer to integration into the EU, which remains unchanged course for our country.
From his part President Lech Kaczynski also invited businessmen of Poland to benefit from advantages of Ukrainian markets. He said that political ties between our countries are very close; therefore economic ties should also deepen. “Relations between friendly states should develop and boarders should be no obstacle for that”, - he said.
Ukraine's Foreign Minister Volodymyr Ohryzko met in Brussels his Belgian counterpart Karel De Gucht.
The ministers dwelt on the development of bilateral relations between Ukraine and Belgium in view of the preparation of a visit to Ukraine of Belgian's Prime Minister Yves Leterme, which is to take place in few days, and establishment of work of the Intergovernmental Combined Commission on Trade and Economic Cooperation and Financial Cooperation.
The parties confirmed intention to shortly prepare and sign a Road Map of Ukraine-Belgium Relations 2008-2010. Special attention was paid to urgent issues of Ukraine's European and Euro-Atlantic integration, and cooperation within international organizations.
Volodymyr Ohryzko and Karel De Gucht expressed mutual interest of Ukraine and Belgium to further enhance bilateral relations.
Defense Ministry reports lack of money to pay MIC enterprises for completed orders - Minister Yuriy Yekhanurov
Defense Minister Yuriy Yekhanurov said the ministry will have to restrict payment of funds to MIC enterprises for earlier fulfilled works due to an extremely low level of the Armed Forces financing, he was speaking at a meeting timed to the state of the army's budget financing this year.
The Minister also reported that the parliamentary budget committee backed a proposal of the Defense Ministry to allocate around USD 23 million for nutrition of the personnel by the year end through redistribution of the Defense Ministry's expenditure items. Patching up of holes will be based on the reduction of expenditures on the army's reformation and development, development and resumption of arms and materiel combat readiness. However, the parliament has to make these amendments to the 2008 budget.
During a working visit to Brussels, Foreign Minister Volodymyr Ohryzko met EU Trade Commissioner Catherine Ashton and EU Energy Commissioner Andris Piebalgs, the foreign ministry sources told.
V. Ohryzko emphasized on importance and priority of negotiations for Ukraine on creation of a free trade zone as an important component of the future agreement on the Ukraine-EU Association and underscored that after the negotiations the parties should achieve mutually beneficial opening of the markets.
During a meeting with Energy Commissioner A. Piebalgs, the parties discussed issues of cooperation between Ukraine and the EU in the energy sphere and exchanged opinions on fulfillment of the Memorandum between Ukraine and the EU on mutual understanding in the sphere of energy cooperation in 2008.
The parties expressed satisfaction with the start of negotiations on Ukraine's accession to the Energy Community n November this year.
Wednesday, October 29, 2008
In Donetsk President Victor Yushchenko met with the President of Poland Lech Kaczynski.
During the meeting sides talked over bilateral relations between Ukraine and Poland, particularly preparation to holding EURO 2012, world financial crisis impact on both countries, European and Euro-Atlantic integration of Ukraine, trans-boarder cooperation, energy security, etc.
At later joint press conference of the two Presidents, President Yushchenko suggested involving eastern regions of Ukraine more in Ukrainian-Polish economic and trade cooperation because there most of Ukrainian industrial potential is situated.
The Chornobyl subject will remain the main aspect of cooperation between the emergency ministries of Ukraine and Belarus in 2009 - 2011, ministers Volodymyr Shandra of Ukraine and Enver Bariev of Belarus said commenting the outcome of the meeting in Gomel of the Ukraine - Belarus commission for cooperation in prevention of emergencies and mitigation of their aftermath.
The participants in the news briefing pointed out the high efficiency of cooperation between the ministries both at the level of central bodies and regional departments. The ministries have arranged regular exchange of radiation and environment information, interaction of bordering regions to prevent and clean up emergencies over the period of fire and flood seasons, as well as created a data bank of potentially hazardous enterprises.
The two countries' emergencies ministers signed a plan of measures for the commission work in 2009 - 2011. The parties are planning to continue implementation of projects for the prevention and treatment of emergencies, the Chornobyl subject remaining the key aspect. This implies further development of information exchange, closer cooperation of border regions in combating forest and peatbog fires, preventive work among population, and implementation of scientific projects.
The ministries are determined to establish cooperation to reorient emergency services at preparing for climate risks in view of the global warming.
Ukraine has closely approached to fulfilling crucial reforms in judicial system, criminal justice, combating corruption, the Bar, Ukraine's Justice Minister Mykola Onishchuk told a meeting with Janina Jaruzelski, newly appointed Director of the USAID Regional Mission in Ukraine, Moldova and Belarus.
According to Mykola Onishchuk, the country will shortly implement a range of justice projects that may create new legal instruments to help Ukraine complete its transition to a sustainable democratic development.
The Minister also said the new Criminal Procedural Code is planned to be shortly presented which is to fundamentally reform the system of pre-trial investigation in Ukraine and improve remedial procedures in line with internationally accepted democratic standards.
Ukrainian citizens adopted 1,505 children over nine months, 227 children up against the same period of the last year, Minister for Family, Youth and Sports Yuriy Pavlenko told a meeting of the Interdepartmental Commission for Childhood Protection.
The minister also informed that as of October 1, 2008, 10,175 children were taken under guardianship. On the whole, over 63 thousand orphans and children deprived of parental care are under guardianship, 6,000 out of that number are at foster homes and family-type homes. This year, 1,515 orphans were taken for fosterage.
Presently, 347 children's family-type homes are functioning in the country, 2,335 children are fostered there, there are also 2,216 foster families with 3,701 children educated there.
Ukraine has supplied to Sweden-based enterprise of the Japanese-US Westinghouse company enriched uranium for fabrication of 42 fuel assemblies for the Southern Ukrainian nuclear power plant, Natalia Shumkova, director of the nuclear energy and atomic industry department at the Fuel and Energy Ministry of Ukraine, told a conference of the Ukrainian Nuclear Society.
"We have complied with our commitments," she said noting that the uranium was enriched in Russia, and supplied on a give-and-take basis.
According to Shumkova, a Ukrainian delegation left for Sweden in October to audit assembly production at Westinghouse enterprises.
The delivery of 42 fuel assemblies to the third reactor of the Southern Ukrainian NPP is scheduled for 2009. Since 2005 the NPP has been running six US assemblies.
The Ukrainian new generation regional airliner An-148-100 is partaking in the International Iran Air Show in Kish Island, the Persian Gulf, according to press-service of the Antonov Aeronautical Scientific/Technical Complex.
The airliner demonstration in Iran is run due to a great interest of airlines in the plane. The An-148 is supposed to be supplemented on Iran's route network with the turbo-prop An-140 aircrafts that have been exploited in the region since November 2004.
The Ukrainian delegation will hold negotiations intended to further enhance cooperation in aviation between Ukraine and Iran that has started more than 12 years ago with signing of the contract on a joint production, design, transfer of technologies and production of the An-140 airplane between Antonov ASTC and HESA Iran Aircraft Manufacturing Ind. Co.
The An-148 is a regional passenger aircraft capable of carrying of 70-90 passengers with maximum range of 5,000 km, cruising speed - 820-870 km/h.
According to expert assessments, the An-148 aircraft 25-30% overpasses the currently used planes of the same class in terms of exploitation efficiency.
Ukrainian Transport and Communications Minister Yosyp Vinsky has said that his ministry is planning to acquire a controlling stake at one of Ukrainian banks in connection with the need to secure the ministry's accounts under conditions of the financial crisis.
He expressed confidence that the funds of UkrZaliznytsia, UkrAvtoDor, airports, post office and ports would be safe at a bank owned by the ministry.
Deputy Transport Minister Kateryna Fomenko said while explaining the ministry's position that "the accounts of the ministry's enterprises at tens of banks are currently jeopardized. For instance, we have our accounts worth over UAH 50 million (USD 1 / UAH 5.35) 'frozen' in PromInvestBank, and it is not a single example," she said.
Bankers are skeptical about the minister's idea, as they believe that spending on the purchase and development of the bank will be greater than possible benefits.
In Istanbul President Victor Yushchenko met with Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I.
At the meeting President Yushchenko again thanked Patriarch Bartholomew I for taking part in celebration of 1020th anniversary of Baptism of Kyivan Rus. According to him Patriarch’s visit to Ukraine left Ukrainian faithful with good impression and gave them hope in establishment of Ukrainian Unified Church.
President Yushchenko also told Patriarch Bartholomew about the coming commemoration of the 75th anniversary of Holodomor in Ukraine and appealed that Patriarch asked Senior Priests of local churches to conduct commemoration services that day.
In Istanbul President Victor Yushchenko met with representatives of Turkish business: ‘Cukurova Holding’ Board of Directors Chairman Mehmet Emin Karamehmet, ‘Finansbank’ Chairman Hüsnü Özyeğin and ‘Doğuş Holding’ Chairman Ferit Şahenk.
At the meeting sides discussed impact of world financial crisis on Ukraine.
Speaking About that President Yushchenko stressed that world financial crisis did not damage Ukraine’s banking system much, having more negative effect on exports and currency turnover.
He also assured those present that Ukraine would be able to manage these negative tendencies successfully.
Tuesday, October 28, 2008
During the interview President Yushchenko has been answering questions about Ukrainian-Turkish relations, his talks with leadership of Turkey, ways of minimizing world economic crisis impact on Ukraine, etc.
In Ankara, Turkey, President Victor Yushchenko put flowers near the tomb of Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, the leader of Turkish War of Independence and the founder and first President of the Republic of Turkey.
Other participants of the ceremony were NSDC Secretary Raisa Bohatyryova, Foreign Minister Volodymyr Ohryzko, Energy Minister Yuriy Prodan and deputy Chief of Staff of Presidential Secretariat Andrii Goncharuk.
After that President Yushchenko left his signature in a Book of Honorable guests of the Anıtkabir.
Speaking to journalists in Ankara President Victor Yushchenko stressed expectancy that anti-crisis set of measures and laws would become a good working instrument of stabilizing Ukrainian economy and minimizing impact of world financial crisis on Ukraine.
He also said that he expects the Parliament to approve the set prepared by the NSDC tomorrow.
Ukraine has resumed the final stage of the program of state tests of the new An-70 military-transport aircraft, which was suspended in the autumn of 2006. The landing of passengers and cargo will be soon tested on An-70 planes and a braking system will be checked during a landing on an unsurfaced runway.
The need to finance the completion of the state program of tests in 2011 is estimated at USD 132 million. Work has been launched on modernizing the aircraft's electronic equipment and systems. Partner enterprises have been given respective technical tasks.
A strategy for a special law on the national target program for the creation and purchase of An-70 military-transport aircraft has been also drafted and submitted for approval by the Ukrainian government. According to the strategy, the date for allocating the first An-70 plane to Ukrainian military servicemen was postponed from 2006 until 2011.
The program for the creation of An-70 military-transport aircraft is being implemented by Ukraine and Russia according to intergovernmental agreements. According to a contract signed in 2001, Kyiv-based Aviant Plant is currently building first two An-70 planes for the Ukrainian Defense Ministry.
In 2006, Russia expressed desire to leave the program, however, Russia's withdrawal from the project has not been yet officially registered and the partners are holding talks on extending cooperation on the program.
According to agreed estimated\s, the amount of Ukraine's and Russia's spending on the An-70 program is around USD 1.5 billion.
Foreign Ministry instructs Ukrainian Embassy in Kenya to hold negotiations on supply of food to Faina ship
Stocks of foodstuffs, fuel and water are decreasing on the Faina ship captured by Somali pirates, the Foreign Ministry Speaker Vasyl Kyrylych told a briefing at the foreign ministry. He noted that an issue of such supplies has been complicated due to certain problems with regard to coordination of actions of all participants in the negotiations, in particular, in the context of settlements for supplies.
Vasyl Kyrylych underscored that in this connection the Ukrainian Foreign Ministry gave urgent instructions to the Ukrainian Embassy in Kenya to hold meetings with all participants in the negotiation process. The Speaker reminded that the negotiation process has been conducted according to a scheme established by the international practice. The negotiation process with the pirates is conducted either by the ship owner or by its representative. In this case, it is the British Company having experience of negotiations with pirates. He emphasized that another party does not participate in the negotiation process and therefore interference of another factor that is not entitled to conduct negotiations may damage the whole negotiation process.
Presently 17 Ukrainians, two Russians and one Latvian citizen are on board.
Speaking to media at his joint press conference with the President of Turkey Abdullah Gül, President Yushchenko informed that the two countries have plans of establishing a free trade zone and liberalizing visa regulations up to cancelation of visas.
He informed that currently the two sides are close to partial canceling of visas for such citizens’ categories as journalists, students, businessmen, etc. In result of today’s talks Foreign Ministries of the two countries were instructed to elaborate specific mechanisms that would allow making concrete steps in that direction soon.
Also the two leaders reached agreement on beginning talks on free trade zone. Here President Yushchenko stressed that both countries consider free trade zone reasonable and put it as common goal in development of bilateral economic ties.
President Victor Yushchenko met in Ankara with the President of Turkey Abdullah Gül.
At the meeting sides discussed cooperation between the two countries on bilateral, regional and international level.
After the meeting the two leaders held a joint press conference.
Speaking to media President Yushchenko expressed assurance that busy agenda of bilateral relations between Ukraine and Turkey proves that both sides are interested in developing good neighborly relations.
He informed that the two leaders dedicated much of their attention to the situation in the region, Ukraine’s aspiration to get NATO MAP, other security issues. In that field according to President Yushchenko the sides have full mutual understanding.
From his part President Abdullah Gül affirmed that his country supports NATO opened doors policy and therefore welcomes Ukraine’s advance towards joining the organization.
Beside that the two leaders reached agreement that Education Ministries of the two countries would soon begin talks on agreement on reciprocal recognition of diplomas and academic degrees.
Separately the President of Turkey thanked Ukrainian side for support of Crimean Tatars who live in Crimea.
Within the framework of his visit to Turkey, President Victor Yushchenko met with the Speaker of the Parliament of Turkey Köksal Toptan.
At the meeting sides dwelled on discussing ratification of Ukrainian-Turkish agreements on scientific and energy cooperation by the legislative body of Turkey.
Within the framework of his visit to Turkey, President Victor Yushchenko met the Prime Minister of the republic Recep Tayyip Erdoğan.
During the meeting sides have discussed bilateral cooperation between Ukraine and Turkey particularly in economy, trade energy, space exploration, military, tourism, etc.
When making remarks on state of affairs between the counties both sides stressed appreciation of their development especially in trade and economic field.
For their further development the sides expressed for establishment of a free trade zone between Ukraine and Turkey.
Here President Yushchenko suggested inviting the European Commission to the talks thus making them trilateral, explaining his suggestion with the fact that Ukraine already conducts similar negotiations with the European Union.
Also Ukrainian side offered our country’s experience in space exploration with regard to Turkey’s plans to develop its space program.
Monday, October 27, 2008
President Victor Yushchenko wrote a letter to President of the European Parliament Hans-Gert Pöttering.
In his letter President Yushchenko thanked the European Parliament for approving the resolution on Holodomor in Ukraine on October 23.
“On behalf of Ukrainian nation I would like to thank European Parliament deputies for honoring memory of millions of our fellow countrymen, who became victims of inhumane Stalin’s regime and for sharing our pain that stings our souls until now”.
He also said that he considered the event another exhibit of solidarity and support to Ukraine in its effortsto uncover the truth about Holodomor 1932-1933 before the world.
“By condemning crimes of the past we create a moral precedent that makes these crimes’ repetition in the future impossible”, - said Victor Yushchenko in the letter.
President Victor Yushchenko went with an official two day visit to the Republic of Turkey.
In the visit President is accompanied by NSDC Secretary Raisa Bohatyryova, Foreign Minister Volodymyr Ohryzko, Energy Minister Yuriy Prodan, deputy Chief of Staff of Presidential Secretariat Andrii Goncharuk
The Cabinet of Ministers has passed a resolution imposing special restrictions on the clearance of forests in the Carpathian Mountains (West Ukraine).
The State Forestry Committee said that the document had been passed in connection with July's devastating floods in western Ukraine that were explained by the illegal cutting of forests.
At the same time, environmentalists believe that these measures are insufficient and that deforestation should be fully banned in the Carpathians.
According to the document, which will take effect on January 1, 2009, the complete clearance of forests and deforested areas in the Carpathians should be significantly restricted, while the clauses of general rules for deforestation in Ukrainian forests permitting the systematic cutting of forests, will not be applied to forests in Zakarpattia, Ivano-Frankivsk, Lviv and Chernivtsi regions.
In particular, if 40-50% of one hectare of forests can be cleared according to current rules, this figure will be no more than 30% for the Carpathian forests. According to the new document, the width of a wood cutting area should not exceed 50 meters.
It was deforestation that was described by ecologists as a major reason for July's floods in the Carpathian region. Thirty people died and tens of thousands of residential houses were flooded as a result of torrential rain in western Ukraine.
Ukraine reached accords with the International Monetary Fund Mission on the aspects of an economic program, which, if it is approved by the IMF Board of Directors, will let Ukraine get an IMF loan to support economic stability of the country within the global finance crisis, NBU and Finance Ministry's statement reads.
The statement says the IFM finance assistance will depend on the fulfillment of a number of measures of economic policy intended to level a balance of payments due to a change of the global market environment, as well as budget balance and execution of comprehensive measures to back Ukraine's banking sector, including making amendments to laws that need to be shortly adopted by the Ukrainian parliament.
Furthermore, according to the Finance Ministry and the National Bank of Ukraine, the IMF assistance opens the way to an intensified cooperation of Ukraine with other international finance institutions on the bilateral basis, allows to build up confidence of investors and ensure sustainable operation of the banking sector.
The creation of a free trade area meets the interests of Ukraine, but requires much domestic work in the country, including the harmonization of national legislation and the achievement of political stability. Ukrainian Deputy Economy Minister Valeriy Piatnytsky was speaking after the fourth round of talks on the creation of a free trade area between the European Union and Ukraine.
Major directions for cooperation, including trade in goods and the protection of intellectual property rights, were considered during the negotiations.
Valeriy Piatnytsky said that the effectiveness of domestic work on bringing national laws in conformity with European legislation is the most burning issue for Ukraine. The expansion of the Union's economic activities eastwards, in particular, to Baltic countries and other Ukraine's traditional trade partners, means that Ukraine will either be able to accept European rules of the game or will run the risk of losing its markets.
He said that the fact that the European market is larger than the Ukrainian one should prompt the country to action. He said that following the creation of a free trade area, Ukrainian entrepreneurs would have more opportunities in Europe, than Europeans in Ukraine.
Piatnytsky praised the constructive talks with the EU and refused to predict the date for their completion. Another meeting between Ukrainian and European delegations will take place in early 2009.
Talks on the creation of a free trade area between Ukraine and the European Union started in February 2008. The creation of a free trade area should become a key clause in a new Agreement of Association between Ukraine and the EU.
The volume of direct foreign investment in the Ukrainian economy totaled USD 36.45 billion in the first half of 2008, including USD 6.9 billion growth in the first six months of 2008. Ukrainian Economy Minister Bohdan Danylyshyn was speaking at a meeting with representatives from the U.S. Business Executives for National Security, the Ministry's press service reported.
He said that the United States remains one of Ukraine's investment partners. U.S. investment in the Ukrainian economy grew by USD 30.6 million over the period, to USD 1.4 billion (6.7% of the total volume of direct foreign investment). A total of 1,408 companies with U.S. assets currently operate in Ukraine.
The economic situation in Ukraine and the United States, as well as ways out of the global financial crisis were discussed during the meeting. Danylyshyn said that the stock market is the most painful channel of the crisis hitting Ukraine, as it only puts certain pressure on the national currency market because of an outflow of speculative assets. Other channels of influence are more susceptible to the Ukrainian economy. They include, for instance, the banking system, which currently has a significant share of foreign assets at financial institutions.
Danylyshyn also said that the Ukrainian government wants to maintain transparent cooperation with international investors and describes as a priority the "removal of all obstacles on the path of large business entering Ukraine."
The second round of Ukrainian-Turkish negotiations on visa issues took place in Ankara. The Ukrainian delegation was headed by Deputy Director of the Foreign Ministry's Consular Service Serhiy Borodenkov, the Turkish - by Deputy Director of the Foreign Ministry's Consular Service Melih Ulueren.
As the Foreign Ministry sources told, during the negotiations a text of the Draft Agreement between the governments of Ukraine and Turkey on mutual simplification of visa procedures was discussed clause-by-clause.
It was noted that application of the provisions of this Agreement will touch upon a considerable number of citizens in Ukraine and Turkey, in particular, with regard to receiving free and multi-visas for the term of five years. At the same time, it was fixed that a consular duty for drawing up such visas will not exceed USD 20.
The parties came to an agreement to continue working over the designated Agreement with the aim of further simplification of a regime of mutual visits of citizens in the interests of both states, taking into consideration common aspiration of Ukraine and Turkey to integrate with the European Union.
During negotiations, an issue was also raised concerning protection of rights and legal interests of the Ukrainian citizens staying on the territory of Turkey.
In addition, on request of the Ukrainian party, the Turkish delegation head handed over a note on completion of interstate procedures on ratification of the Intergovernmental Ukrainian-Turkish Agreement on Readmission. Therefore, use of provisions of this Agreement by Ukraine and Turkey will be possible since November 19, 2008.
Readmission is return of illegal immigrants that got into the territory of one country from another country. In addition, readmission is an obligation of the country to accept back the migrants who illegally entered another country from its territory and were detained there. The readmission process envisages, in addition, existence of agreements between the states striving to solve own problems in a civilized way that were caused by unwelcomed guests, and assistance in case of extradition of criminals.
Change of generations and absence of bases - main reasons of Ukrainian swimmers' unpreparedness to Games in Beijing - Yuriy Pavlenko
A change of the generations in the Ukrainian national team and absence of a relevant base in the country to prepare for the Olympics became the main reasons of our athletes' and coaches' unpreparedness to the Olympic Games in Beijing, where the national team failed to win a single medal, Minister for Family, Youth and Sports Yuriy Pavlenko told a press conference.
"After an unsuccessful performance of the Ukrainian athletes at the Olympic Games, I approached specialists so that they made a detailed analysis of what took place in swimming. The experts have prepared a relevant document called "The crisis of national swimming and ways for its overcoming". In several days we will complete the analysis", the minister noted.
According to him, in order to improve the situation not only in swimming, but also in other Olympic sports, on October 30 a meeting will be held that will approve a general plan of development for all priority sports.
Yuriy Pavlenko informed that reconstruction of the sports complex in Kyiv will help in solving this problem to some extent, as well as development of bases in Kharkiv (Akvarena) and Dnipropetrovsk (Meteor). In addition, it is envisaged that the country's western region and a swimming pool of the International Children's Center Artek in Crimea will be attracted to this program.
The minister also paid attention to an insufficient number of swimming pools. "There should be one swimming pool for three schools in Ukraine, each district center should have a swimming pool too", he said. "It is a minimum task put by the President. I believe that we will fulfill it in two to three years".
He expressed hope that a program for development of children's and youth's sports schools will be adopted at the Government's next meeting.
Issues concerning athletes were also discussed. The international tournament in honor of well-known Ukrainian swimmer Denys Silantyev will take place on November 7-8 in Zaporizhzhia. Participating in it will be leading swimmers from the whole world.
Organizer of the competitions Denys Silantyev said that holding of the tournament will become one of the stages in development of swimming in the country.
Finance Minister Viktor Pynzenyk explained why the Cabinet proposes to reorient funds for construction of free housing to the first payment, he told in his speech during a meeting of Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko with industrialists and entrepreneurs.
Pynzenyk underscored that it is necessary to envisage capitalization of the OshchadBank and the UkrExImBank and the State Mortgage Establishment with changing the guidelines of their activities in the Draft State Budget 2009.
The UkrExImBank will work to support the Ukrainian export. The OshchadBank should work for the mortgage, and there is also the State Mortgage Establishment that supports the whole sector of mortgage crediting, the minister said.
In order to expand possibilities of mortgage credits for the housing construction, simultaneously, another amendment into the Ukrainian legislation is made. The funds available today and going to the so-called free housing construction, are sent to a sphere of the first payment. Therefore, a range of the people is expanded who can use it, the minister explained.
On October 22, the Cabinet endorsed a bill on minimization of the world financial crisis impact on Ukraine. With the aim of supporting a system of mortgage crediting of housing and housing construction, a bill in particular provides for receiving first payments for construction (purchase) of the housing by citizens at the expense of the state and local budgets.
Saturday, October 25, 2008
President Victor Yushchenko met today with Ukrainian businessmen: ‘Smart-Holding’ President V. Novynskyi, ‘Interpipe’ President V. Pinchuk, ‘Industrial Union of Donbas’ Committee of Directors Head S. Taruta, ‘Swedbank’ Chairman of the Board S. Tihipko, ‘Sirius’ Director General M. Shcherbyna, ‘UkrSibbank’ President O. Yaroslavskyi.
At the meeting sides have discussed stabilization of Ukrainian economy and minimization of world financial crisis impact on Ukraine. Also they have dwelled on possible social impact of recession in Ukraine.
Speaking to those present President Yushchenko said that he expects Ukrainian businessmen to be responsible and avoid large reductions of staff and decreases in wages because of temporary recession.
Friday, October 24, 2008
Ukrainian citizens adopted over 13,000 children deprived of parental care over the nine months of 2008, according to the press service of the Ukrainian Family, Youth and Sports Ministry.
In particular, Ukrainian citizens adopted 1,514 orphaned children and children deprived of parental care, while foreigners adopted 998 children over the period.
As of October 1, a total of 6,036 orphaned and abandoned children were brought up in foster and children's homes. Of them, 1,515 children were accepted to these homes only in the last nine months of 2008, which is 150 children up year-over-year.
"Ukraine's stance remains invariable: the Russian Black Sea Fleet must leave Ukraine's territory after May 28, 2017. This is a requirement of the Ukrainian Constitution which says that no foreign military base is permitted to be deployed in the territory of our state," a commentary of Ukraine's MFA Spokesman Vasyl Kyrylych reads in view of a statement made by the Russian Foreign Minister on October 22 saying Russia means to propose Ukraine to prolong the term of the RBSF stationing in Crimea after 2017.
Vasyl Kyrylych reminded that the Ukrainian Ministry of Foreign Affairs has repeatedly spoken about the impossibility to prolong the term of the RBSF temporary deployment in Ukraine's territory and "this issue cannot be a subject of discussions," the MFA Spokesman underscored.
"We offer clear and comprehensive logics of actions: to coordinate in advance all the components of the RBSF withdrawal from Ukraine - both military-technical and social. Such an approach will make impossible rhetoric on unreadiness or unexpectedness of the withdrawal of the RBSF military formations from the territory of our state," the commentary reads.
Vasyl Kyrylych also stressed that statements made by Russia's officials on the advisability to hold talks on the RBSF withdrawal at a later stage will not have influence on the terms of the RBSF stationing in Ukraine, but they can hamper the process of timely and integrated preparation for the withdrawal of military formations of the Russian party.
The Ukrainian MFA also said that change of governments in Ukraine or any other domestic political processes will not serve a basis for changing Ukraine's stance on the RBSF.
As of October 22, Ukraine harvested 49.04 million tons of grain crops, the Agrarian Ministry reports.
Grain and leguminous crops were harvested on 14.04 million ha or on 90% of area supposed to be harvested.
The average yield of grain crops in Ukraine totals 34.9 centners per ha.
The agrarian enterprises, in particular, threshed 5.05 million tons of maize. 278 thousand tons of buckwheat were harvested as well as 231.5 thousand tons of millet, 77 thousand tons of rise and 477.6 thousand tons of soy.
Ukraine also harvested 5.6 million tons of sunflower seeds.
Health Care Ministry urges politicians, physicians, mass media to assist settlement of situation with refusals from vaccination
Ukraine requires intensification of propaganda among physicians and population about necessity of vaccination as at present the anti-vaccination campaign is spreading, the meeting of the academic medical council of the Ukrainian Health Care Ministry noted.
Solving of immunoprophylaxis problem related to the national security requires consolidation of efforts of both practical physicians, scientists and teachers of medical higher educational establishments, Health Care Minister Vasyl Lazoryshynets underlined.
According to director of the Institute of Pediatrics, Obstetrics and Gynecology of the Ukrainian Academy of Medical Sciences Yuriy Antipkin, 12 million children die because of infectious diseases annually including one third that could be saved due to vaccination. According to the Ukrainian calendar of inoculations, children should be compulsory vaccinated against 10 diseases and against five more - according to indication. "Vaccination is not forced but parents should treat health of their children in a responsible way," he underscored.
According to Acting Deputy Health Care Minister, acting Chief Sanitary Inspector of Ukraine Anatoliy Ponomarenko, as of early September, the deficit of vaccination in the country totals over 10% and by late 2008 it will grow more and these are "thousands of children's diseases that could be prevented". At the same time it will be impossible to reach 95% level of coverage with vaccination recommended by the World Health Organization, when in previous years Ukraine had 98-99% coverage. The Health Care Ministry urges politicians, physicians and mass media to help in settlement of this problem.
The Ukrainian version of the calendar of inoculations is absolutely brought in line with the European one and in 2009, it will be "optimized even more, taking into account the epidemiological situation in Ukraine, Europe and in the world as well as new vaccines," Ponomarenko noted.
Vaccine saves life of three million children in the world annually and prevents from disability of one million children. New vaccines which are supposed to be introduced in the near 5-15 years, will prevent from death of eight million children annually.
As UKRINFORM earlier reported, the campaign against inoculations started in May 208 in Ukraine, when on May 13, a pupil of the 11th form died in Kramatorsk after vaccination against measles and rubella. The state of health of a group of children vaccinated in various Ukrainian regions got worse. The vaccine made by an Indian company was not certified in Ukraine.
In Zhytomyr President Victor Yushchenko took part in the IV congress of specialists in social medicine and organization of healthcare.
The agenda of the gathering included such problems as:
- development of national healthcare system
- quality staffing of national healthcare system
- reforming healthcare and bringing it closer to European standards
- prospects of development of social medicine as scientific discipline in Ukraine
In his address at the event President Yushchenko said that together with increasing financing of healthcare it is important to reform it.
Explaining that opinion, President Yushchenko stressed with disappointment that despite financing of healthcare in Ukraine is increased with every year, it appears to have no effect on health of the nation. According to him, therefore, increase in financing itself does not solve issues in healthcare and the branch requires reforming.
In continuation President said that to his opinion it’s the workers of healthcare themselves, who should be providing ideas to reforming the branch. “You should organize reforms in healthcare. And I will be the first partner to you in that”, - said Victor Yushchenko.
Thursday, October 23, 2008
Within the framework of his visit to Zhytomyr region President Victor Yushchenko took part in opening of the new Consultation and Diagnostics Clinic named after O.F. Horbachevskyi.
Speaking at the event President Yushchenko congratulated people of Zhytomyr region with the event adding also that they now have a modern complex able to accept a thousand of patients daily.
He also thanked everybody, who put their efforts and work into building and equipping the clinic.
Beside that President Yushchenko presented the clinic with a certificate for buying additional medical equipment.
After that President took a tour of the new facility.
Within the framework of his visit to Zhytomyr region President Victor Yushchenko visited Zhytomyr Regional Mother and Child Clinic.
At the clinic President was shown maternity ward, intensive care, lactation ward, etc.
President also spoke to women, who recently became mothers and gave them flowers and presents.
Minister for Health Vasyl Knyazevych accompanied President Yushchenko in the visit to the clinic.
Luhansk region going ahead in implementing programs on youth housing in Ukraine, Minister Pavlenko claims
Luhansk region (East Ukraine) leads the pack in terms the implementation of programs on youth housing in Ukraine, Minister for Family, Youth and Sports Yuriy Pavlenko told a meeting with the region leadership.
According to Oleksandr Antipov, Head of the Luhansk Regional State Administration, the region was an initiator of the program on preferential crediting, construction, reconstruction of housing for youth which was supported by local budgets of all levels and helped parcel out land plots under construction. The official also said the region has already granted 496 preferential long-term credits to young families for construction and purchasing of housing to the total amount of UAH 60 million.
Luhansk region was also among first in Ukraine to partake in 2007 in implementing a new direction in solving housing problems of pedagogic and scientific-pedagogic officers through giving preferential credits for construction and purchasing of housing.
Ukrainian First Deputy Foreign Minister Volodymyr Khandohiy has met with NATO Assistant Secretary General for Public Diplomacy Jean-Francois Bureau.
The two discussed the course of an information campaign dedicated to the Euro-Atlantic integration of Ukraine and its cooperation with the alliance.
Khandohiy said that an increase in public support for the idea of Ukraine's joining NATO had become the outcome of active work in the information sector. He said that the number of NATO supporters in Ukraine grew by over 10% in October 2008 compared to June 2008.
President Victor Yushchenko visited His Holiness, the Patriarch of Kiev and All Rus’ - Ukraine Filaret at his residence to congratulate him on the 13th anniversary of Patriarch Filaret’s enthronement.
President Yushchenko wished Patriarch Filaret inexhaustible spiritual power and strength in faith.
Speaking to journalists today, President Victor Yushchenko stressed that early parliamentary election should be held either on December 4, or on December 14, 2008.
The first case, according to President, would be possible if the Verkhovna Rada is able to introduce proper alterations to the 2008 budget on time to provide financing of the election. Than the Government, Central Election Commission and district commissions would be able to hold election on December 7.
In the second case, if Parliament’s work is delayed and holding the election on December 7 due to lack of appropriate financing is impossible, the election would be postponed till December 14.
Answering the question if there is a possibility that the election is delayed even more, President Yushchenko said that “it is possible but pointless”, because it is crucial that the country had fully functional Parliament before January 1, 2009.
Wednesday, October 22, 2008
Speaking to journalists today President Victor Yushchenko stressed that BYuT’s activity in the Parliament, particularly them blocking its work, is undemocratic.
He said that he was surprised by such actions of BYuT deputies because it was crucial for the Verkhovna Rada to adopt a number of laws aimed at stabilizing economic and financial situation in Ukraine with regard to world financial crisis and to solve questions on democratic resolution of political crisis in the country.
President Victor Yushchenko came to the Office of the Prosecutor General today to testify in the case of his poisoning.
Speaking to journalists after that President Yushchenko informed them that progress was made towards revealing the case.
At the same time, according to President, three main figurants of the case, who have the information important for further effective investigation currently stay in Russia.
“Without questioning them … it is hard to expect the progress to be substantial when we are speaking about time”, - said Victor Yushchenko expressing assurance however those responsible for his poisoning would answer for their deeds after all.
President Victor Yushchenko gave an interview to world’s leading radio stations: BBC, Svoboda, Deutsche Welle and Radio France.
During the interview President Yushchenko has been answering questions about the plan of minimization of world financial crisis impact on Ukraine, organization and holding pre-term parliamentary election, gas talks with Russia, etc.
The interview is scheduled to be on air of the radio stations on October 22 and 23.
Ukraine will continue to provide assistance to Georgia in post-war recovery of economics, transport infrastructure and social sector, Konstiantyn Yeliseyev, Ukraine's Deputy Foreign Minister, told reporters in Brussels, currently participating in the International Donors Conference for Georgia: call for wide international support for stabilization and growth in Georgia, being held under the auspices of the European Commission and the World Bank.
Yeliseyev reminded that the Ukrainian party sent a humanitarian assistance to Georgia at some USD 1 million right after the conflict completion, and then the Georgian government received about USD 11 million to restore an economic infrastructure, and several days ago a decision was made to earmark the same amount by the year end. A total of 200 Georgian children from the conflict area improved health in Crimea, and another group of 100 children will arrive in Ukraine soon for treatment and psychological rehabilitation.
Asked by the correspondent about the effect on Ukraine's foreign policy of a certain evolution of visions of EU countries on the conflict causes, the Ukrainian diplomat said this issue in Ukraine is a subject of political disputes. However, according to him, Ukraine's main political forces share three basic approaches regarding Georgia. These are non-use of force in settling political crises, especially frozen conflicts, unconditional support to Georgia's territorial integrity and sovereignty, as well as non-recognition of self-proclaimed South Ossetia and Abkhazia, K. Yeliseyev said.
It was with "unfeigned astonishment" that the Foreign Affairs Ministry of Ukraine heard Tuesday's allegations on Euroatlantic strivings of Ukraine, made by Gernot Erler, Minister of State at the Federal Foreign Office of Germany, during a Moscow - Berlin video conference, the MFA press service comment reads.
It is particularly surprising that the statement was not made during meetings with Ukrainian partners who would soundly disprove a lot of theses, the foreign affairs ministry says.
In Ukrainian diplomats' opinion, Erler's only objective declaration was that Ukraine, as well as any other democratic state, has different points of view, particularly, as regards NATO. All the rest was a "tactless manipulation of figures and facts" based on rhetoric that is unacceptable in assessment by ranking officials of a sovereign foreign state's positions.
"We also cannot but be disturbed by the logics of Mr. Erler that Germany and other member-countries of the European Union actually regret the forethoughtful decisions the Alliance approved in Bucharest on Ukraine and Georgia. To our mind, this position is hardly shared by FRG Chancellor Angela Merkel who personally joined the wording of prospects for Ukraine's entry in NATO," the foreign ministry emphasized drawing the conclusion that the minister's rhetoric must have been owing to the coming elections in Germany.
The MFA called as "imaginary phobias" that should not be taken very much to heart the words on Ukraine's split into two implacable political camps on the issue of Euroatlantic policy. "In their Euroatlantic policy, the President and the Government of Ukraine are acting in compliance with the Constitution of Ukraine and the laws in effect approved by the Ukrainian Parliament and directly implying Ukraine's accession to NATO as a priority of the state foreign policy. Yet, a final decision will naturally be taken with regard for the Ukrainian people's opinion," the foreign ministry says.
As reported, during the Moscow - Berlin TV linkup on October 21, Erler stated that Ukraine's joining NATO depends on the stance of the majority of population, while intensification of the accession threatens with splitting the country. "We are not out to destabilize a neighbor state with the moves that could lead to its split," Erler said also making some other impudent interpretations of the situation in Ukraine, which do not correspond to reality.
Ukraine hopes to start a dialogue with the European Union on a visa-free regime of trips by the end of October this year. Ukrainian Deputy Foreign Minister Kostiantyn Yeliseev was speaking at a meeting with Ukrainian and foreign journalists in Brussels on Wednesday.
He said that the participants in the latest Ukraine-EU Summit in Paris on September 9 agreed to start a bilateral dialogue on visa issues aimed at the introduction of mutual visa-free trips for citizens from Ukraine and the European Union in the long term. "We hope very much that we will start this visa dialogue with the European Union on October 29. The Ukrainian side has made many efforts to put certain pressure on the European Union and start this process without a delay. We must prove that we can take important decisions and implement them," Yeliseev said.
He said that Ukraine is continuing to work with the European Commission to determine the format of a meeting, which is to be held on October 29.
Yeliseev said that the visa dialogue between Ukraine and the EU should result in the drafting of certain directives or a roadmap. These documents should contain preliminary conditions, which Ukraine should meet to introduce a visa-free regime with the Union.
Today Ukraine will sign a letter-agreement with the World Bank with regard to a grant from the Swedish Trust Fund for the aims of the city infrastructure development project, the Economics Ministry press service informed.
The document will be signed by Economics Minister Bohdan Danylyshyn and Director of the World Bank for Ukraine, Belarus and Moldova Martin Raiser.
The aim of the project is assistance to the Government within the framework of the city infrastructure development in strengthening a potential of the municipal service sector, in particular, services for water supply and the drainage system, waste utilization and central heat supply.
Tuesday, October 21, 2008
President Victor Yushchenko met today with the IMF mission Head Ceyla Pazarbasioglu to discuss recommendations by the organization to Ukraine.
President informed IMF mission Head on measures about to be taken to minimize world financial crisis impact on Ukraine. According to him these decisions consider some recommendations of the IMF such as on a problem of Prominvestbank, continuation of social payments in 2009, economically grounded pricing for gas and other municipal tariffs, introduction of a system of banks’ refinancing, etc.
He also told that in order the NSDC elaborated plan and all laws within its framework were adopted, the work of the Parliament was restored for a few days.
Separately the two officials discussed possible social implications of the crisis and anti-crisis measures introduction.
From Ukrainian side participants of the meeting were Finances Minister Viktor Pynzenyk, National Bank Head Volodymyr Stelmakh, first deputy Chief of Staff of Presidential Secretariat Oleksandr Shlapak and deputy Chief of Staff of Presidential Secretariat Andrii Goncharuk.
At his today’s press briefing that followed NSDC meeting, President Victor Yushchenko stressed opinion that Ukraine has all the resources to present proper response to a threat of world financial crisis.
President Yushchenko informed that the NSDC had elaborated recommendations of applying the following four blocks of anti-crisis measures:
- prevention of recession in some branches of economy
- introduction of alterations to budgetary policy in its expenses part
- ensuring keeping up to state and corporate financial obligations before external creditors
- stabilization of national currency, financial and banking system
Servicemen with Ukraine's peacekeeping contingent in Liberia were rewarded with the United Nations Medal in the Service of Peace. A total of 300 Ukrainian peacekeepers of the 56th separate helicopter detachment of Ukraine's Armed Forces of the UN Mission in Liberia were awarded for peace support in this West African country.
Within fulfillment of the UN Mission tasks, Ukrainian helicopter-pilots performed some 1.5 thousand of flights, conveyed more than 600 persons and 284 tons of cargo.
At his today’s press briefing that followed NSDC meeting, President Victor Yushchenko announced that he decided to temporarily stop his Decree on discontinuance of functioning of Verkhovna Rada of VI convocation and on holding pre-term parliamentary election and to allow the deputies to work for a few days.
According to President Yushchenko there were two main causes for that. First, the deputies should adopt a number of laws aimed at minimizing world financial crisis impact on Ukraine.
Secondly, in President’s opinion, the Prime Minister of Ukraine and the Government practically made holding early parliamentary election on December 4 (the date had been appointed by the previous President’s Decree) impossible by refusing providing financing of the election and making raids on courts.
“For normal preparation to the election a have made a decision to postpone the date of vote till December 14”, - said Victor Yushchenko.
Speaking at today’s NSDC meeting about ways of minimizing influence of world economic crisis on Ukraine President Victor Yushchenko said that there are four major challenges connected with that: revision of budgetary policy and state financial system, overcoming crisis in banks liquidity, economic recession, and negative balance of payment.
According to President Yushchenko state budgetary policy should be revised particularly in expenses. Here President suggested reduction of State machinery on all levels of government.
Speaking about banks liquidity President said that it is important to elaborate proper re-financing plan for banks and to increase state-guaranteed payment to depositors to 100 thousand hryvnyas with strengthening State Deposit Guarantee Fund’s financial capabilities by 1 billion hryvnyas for that.
Beside that President Yushchenko pointed to importance of NBU conducting transparent and logical monetary policy and suggested that 2009 State Budget included a separate Stabilization Fund for its resources to be used for supporting enterprises that suffer decrease in demand for their production due to world financial crisis.
Summarizing the subject President stressed opinion that those present should forget about political misunderstandings and focus on elaborating a well thought out anti-crisis plan.
Monday, October 20, 2008
President Victor Yushchenko held a meeting of National Security and Defense Council.
At the meeting the participants discussed the following subjects:
- minimization of world financial crisis influence on Ukraine
- fighting smuggling and violation of customs regulation
- corruption fighting in Ukraine, particularly in courts system
- state migration policy in Ukraine
- restoration of western regions of Ukraine, damaged by floods
- reforming Security Service of Ukraine.
President Victor Yushchenko held a meeting of the Coordinative Board on problems of HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis and drug addiction.
The participants of the meeting were the UN Under Secretary-General and Executive Director of UNAIDS Peter Piot, Minister for Health Vasyl Knyazevych, Minister for Labor Lyudmyla Denysova, Minister for Family Yuriy Pavlenko, Prosecutor General Oleksandr Medvedko, deputy Chief of Staff of Presidential Secretariat Yuriy Bohutsky, co-founder of the ANTIAIDS Foundation Elena Franchuk.
Opening the meeting President Yushchenko pointed to positive shift this year in fighting HIV/AIDS and tuberculosis. According to him almost 9 thousand people with HIV/AIDS gained access to antiretroviral therapy thanks to support of the Global Fund. Also, opening of children’s HIV/AIDS clinic in May 2008 in President’s words was “a great achievement”.
At the same time President Yushchenko said that it is only the beginning of hard work on fighting HIV/AIDS in Ukraine because numbers of ill Ukrainians are still growing. Particular concerns President expressed about growing numbers of HIV positive women and thus number of infected children they give birth to.
In that context President pointed to the problem of drug addiction and said that it is important to fight drug trafficking in order to decrease this HIV/AIDS threatened group.
“I would like to use capabilities of our today’s meeting… to make our efforts more coordinated and clear”, - said Victor Yushchenko addressing those present.
He also stressed hope that at today’s meeting the participants will be able to suggest effective measures against HIV/AIDS.
President Victor Yushchenko together with his wife Kateryna Yushchenko took part in the opening of the 38th Molodist film festival.
At the event President Yushchenko traditionally presented the festival's symbol statuette «Scythian deer» to the person, who contributed to world film art the most. This year the statuette went to filmmaker Roman Balayan.
In his address to those present President thanked all the organizers and participants of the festival. He also expressed hope that the films shown during the festival would please the viewers.
The National Television Company of Ukraine (NTKU) shortly intends to sign an agreement with Televisia Polska on Euro-2012 cooperation, Mykhaylo Kublia, NTKU First Vice President, told a panel meeting of the State Committee of Ukraine for Television and Radio Broadcasting.
The document envisages a wide information exchange between the television companies, preparation of joint programs.
The National Radio Company of Ukraine (NRKU) also means to enlarge cooperation with Polish colleagues within Euro-2012, NRKU President Viktor Nabrusko said.
During the first half of the year investments into the agriculture upped by 1.5 fold.
As First Deputy Agricultural Policy Minister Yuriy Luzan informed, the food industry doubled production volumes since 2000.
In addition, crediting of the agrarian sector increased more than 100 fold against 2000.
Today, the ratio of the agroindustrial complex makes up almost 20 percent of all credit deposits into national products, this figure made up about three percent in 2000, the first deputy agricultural policy minister informed.
A commission from the Food and Veterinary Office (FVO) of the European Commission's Directorate General for Health and Consumers has presented a preliminary report to Ukraine, the press service of the Ukrainian State Committee of Veterinary Service told.
The commission's report stresses the importance of meeting EU veterinary, sanitary and other requirements by Ukrainian companies, concerning the quality and safety of food products during the whole process of production, starting with raw materials and ending with final products.
According to the established procedure for work on reports, commentaries to them and events should be drafted and sent by the Ukrainian side to the European Commission within 25 days after a draft report is received.
A delegation of the Ukrainian Defense Ministry headed by acting First Deputy Foreign Minister Valeriy Ivashchenko participated in the 55th Meeting of the Council of Foreign Ministers of CIS Participating States that took place in St. Petersburg (Russia).
The delegation took part as an observer, the Defense Ministry's press service informs today.
The delegation head discussed problem issues of bilateral cooperation in the defense sphere with Russian Defense Minister Anatoly Serdyukov.
In particular, on further realization of a joint project on creation of the military-transport aircraft AN-70, on the future fate of the Ukraina cruiser, possibility of making repairs of ships and vessels of the Russian Black Sea Fleets at Ukrainian shipbuilding enterprises, other projects in which the Ukrainian enterprises may be interested.
In addition, Ivashchenko informed Serdyukov about measures taken by the Ukrainian Defense Ministry to fulfill normative-legal acts adopted in Ukraine with regard to issues of crossing the state border and movement of the Russian Black Sea Fleet elements and units on the Ukrainian territory.
Saturday, October 18, 2008
President Victor Yushchenko met today with delegates from the International Monetary Fund: Head of the Delegation Ceyla Pazarbasioglu, deputy Head of the delegation Mark Flanagan and IMF Resident Representative in Ukraine Balazs Horvath.
From Ukraine participants of the meeting were Finances Minister Viktor Pynzenyk, National Bank Head Volodymyr Stelmakh, first deputy Chief of Staff of Presidential Secretariat Oleksandr Shlapak and deputy Chief of Staff Andrii Goncharuk.
At the meeting sides discussed influence of world financial crisis on Ukraine and ways to minimize it.
Speaking about his opinion on the subject President stressed: “Today the situation at both internal and external markets is not easy, however I am an absolute optimist and assured that we will be able to present proper response [to challenges before] investors, business and financial system if we make system steps”.
He also informed that Ukrainian institutions are elaborating a consolidated plan of anti-crisis measures and stressed that he expects support of the plan from both political circles and international financial organizations, such as IMF.
“Having dialogue is very important for us now”, - he said.
Friday, October 17, 2008
Ukraine's Deputy Foreign Minister Kostiantyn Yeliseev has met with Poland's National Security Bureau Head Wladyslaw Stasiak, the Foreign Affairs Ministry says on the web.
During the meeting the parties discussed the question of liberalizing relations between the two countries in regional policy, particularly, in the context of post-conflict restoration and stabilization in Georgia, and Ukraine's joining the European Union's observation mission to that country. They also exchanged the opinions of information and energy security in the region.
Attention was also paid to cooperation in European integration. Yeliseev thanked Poland for stable support to Ukraine's European choice, and voiced hope for prolongation of this policy. He also gave a positive assessment to the Polish - Swedish initiative of Eastern Partnership, expressing hope that its implementation will promote Ukraine's practical rapprochement with the European Union.
The parties discussed implementation of the Ukraine - European Union visa facilitation agreement. Yeliseev expressed concern that the situation with the issue of EU visas to Ukrainians much worsened, and the EU does not fully implement the agreement signed. He emphasized that Ukraine is trying to start a dialogue with the EU on the terms for visa-free regulations, and voiced hope for Poland's support to this position of Ukraine.
President Victor Yushchenko met today with the Chief of National Security Bureau of Poland Władysław Stasiak.
At the meeting sides discussed bilateral cooperation between Ukraine and Poland in such fields as development of political dialogue, preparation to holding EURO 2012 Championship, energy security, etc.
President expressed hope that closer cooperation between heads of security councils of the two countries would favor all-out cooperation between Ukraine and Poland.
Speaking of trans-boarder cooperation between the states President Yushchenko pointed to importance of the soonest ratification of the Agreement on local boarder movement between Ukraine and Poland.
Separately the two officials exchanged views on Russian-Georgian conflict and its consequences for regional security and stability.
Thursday, October 16, 2008
President Victor Yushchenko wrote a letter to Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko.
In his letter President drew Prime Minister’s attention to problems with financial support to Ukrainian women with ‘Heroine Mother’ status.
According to President these women, who have raised or adopted five and more children, were provided the right for one-time money award with the relevant Presidential Decree of December 25, 2007.
The Cabinet was instructed to work out and adopt the procedure for paying the awards with making appropriate alterations to 2008 State Budget. Despite the fact the payments have not yet started.
“The women, who were provided with honorary ‘Heroine Mother’ status deserve recognition of their contribution in the name of Ukraine”, - said Victor Yushchenko suggesting that the Government applied all necessary measures to solve the issue.
President Victor Yushchenko held a phone conversation with President Ilham Aliyev of Azerbaijan.
President Yushchenko greeted President Aliyev with hoding successfull presidential election in Azerbaijan.
The two officials also discussed strengthening strategic cooperation between the countries and topical questions of bilateral relations.
Within the framework of his working visit to Zaporizhzhya region, President Victor Yushchenko visited National Historic Preserve ‘Zaporizhian Sich’ located at Khortytsya island.
Staying at Khortytsya President Yushchenko took part in a ceremony of sanctification of crosses at the Protection of the Virgin Church. He also presented the icon of the Protection of the Virgin to the church.
Speaking to journalists at his press conference in Zaporizhzhya, President Victor Yushchenko informed that NSDC would discuss on October 17 meeting the influence of world financial crisis on Ukrainian economy with the aim of elaborating a complex plan of counteraction to the tendency.
Speaking about current problems with Ukrainian financial market President Yushchenko stressed opinion that two thirds of them are results of internal factors influence such as badly thought out budgetary policy.
“Our assignment is to bring the state institutions responsible for forming a joint plan of managing challenges to forming of such a plan”, - President said adding that he would put efforts in making the Government coordinator of its implementation.
Speaking to journalists at his press conference in Zaporizhzhya, President Victor Yushchenko said that the pre-term parliamentary election would certainly take place.
According to him the solution of a problem with financing of the election would be found soon regardless of ‘the tricks that the Prime Minister and her political force are performing”.
He also named BYuT's activity in the Parliament and in courts “the political raid and criminal actions against democracy”. President reminded that only Constitutional Court has the right to provide decision whether the Decree on dissolution of Verkhovna Rada had been constitutional.
Within the framework of his working visit to Zaporizhzhya region, President Victor Yushchenko visited the Dnieper Hydroelectric Station.
President Yushchenko took a tour of the station and was told about its operation and reconstruction.
Staying at the DniproHES President also put flowers to the monument ‘To Unknown Soldier’ located at the territory of the plant and talked to veterans of the Second World War.
Speaking to veterans President greeted them with festival of the Protection of the Virgin and thanked them “for what they had done and for being with us today”.
At the place President Yushchenko was let into details of the project.
President Victor Yushchenko went with a working visit to Zaporizhzhya region.
There President is scheduled to visit a construction site of automobile highway across Dnieper, come to Dnieper Hydroelectric Station, talk to WWII veterans, visit historic preserve ‘Zaporizhian Sich’.
In his trip President is accompanied by deputy Secretariat Chief of Staff Roman Bezsmertny.
In Chernihiv region President Victor Yushchenko took part in the opening of Memorial Complex ’In Memory of Heroes of Kruty’ and the Museum of Kruty Heroes.
President Yushchenko also put flowers to the Monument to Kruty Heroes.
After the ceremony President took a tour of the museum.
President Victor Yushchenko went with a working visit to Chernihiv region.
There he is scheduled to take part in the opening of Memorial to Heroes of Kruty.
In his trip President is accompanied by Vice-Prime Minister Ivan Vasyunyk and Minister for Culture Vasyl Vovkun.
President Victor Yushchenko met today with Minister for Foreign Affairs of Montenegro Milan Rocen.
During the meeting sides have discussed bilateral relations between Ukraine and Montenegro, particularly trade and economic cooperation.
Speaking about that President Yushchenko stressed that Ukraine is interested in all-out development of relations with Montenegro in trade-economic, humanitarian, education field, etc.
He also emphasized that nowadays the two states should put efforts into “filling relations between Ukraine and Montenegro with new content” with dedicating most of the attention to elaborating a documents base for bilateral relations.
Besides, the two officials discussed preparation of President Victor Yushchenko’s visit to Montenegro.
President Victor Yushchenko took part in celebration of Cossacks’ Day and Ukrainian Insurgent Army Day that took place at Sofiyivska Square in Kyiv.
Addressing the newly sworn in cadets of Ivan Bohun Military Lyceum, who were solemnly attested at the event, President greeted them and wished them to be worthy of fame of the legendary Cossack, Bohdan Khmelnitsky’s fellow-fighter Ivan Bohun.
Pointing to their role for Ukraine he also emphasized that strong army is one of major preconditions for garanteed independence and statehood.
After the ceremony President put flowers to the monument to Bohdan Khmelnytski.
President Victor Yushchenko met with Ukrainian athletes, who won medals in the Beijing 2008 Paralympic Games.
Speaking to the athletes President thanked them on behalf of Ukrainian nation for their courage, strength of spirit and ability to break the barriers on the way towards victory.
He also awarded the champions with national decorations.
President Victor Yushchenko wrote telegrams to Foreign Minister Volodymyr Ohryzko and NSDC Secretary Raisa Bohatyryova.
In his telegrams President requested the officials to ensure that the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and National Security and Defense Council applied additional measures to liberate Ukrainian members of the crew of ‘Faina’ boat, captured by pirates.
He also requested that the MFA informed families and relatives of the sailors on the situation regularly.
President Victor Yushchenko held a meeting of National Security and Defense Council.
The agenda for today’s meeting included:
• elaboration of measures aimed at guaranteeing proper and democratic early parliamentary election;
• strengthening financial and budgetary discipline and minimization of negative influence of world financial crisis on Ukrainian economy.
Opening the meeting President Yushchenko stressed that both issues are a matter of stability in the country.
Speaking about early parliamentary election, President repeated that financing of the event is one of the most important problems.
He repeated that after Verkhovna Rada’s work blocking when it was to discuss financing of the election, there is no way to solve the problem but to use funds from budgetary reserve.
Therefore he again addressed the Government to adopt all the necessary decisions to guarantee the voters their constitutional rights at the election.
Speaking about the second question of the agenda, President said that a joint action plan is needed to normalize financial sector and to prevent such crises in the future.
“This plan should be sincere and professional”, - he said, adding that it is important that state authorities and officials responsible for its elaboration forgot about their political views and demonstrate unity and ability to manage challenges before Ukrainian economy.
President Victor Yushchenko held a meeting today with Regional State Administrations’ heads to discuss early parliamentary election holding.
Opening the meeting President reminded that the Decree on pre-term discontinuance of Verkhovna Rada functioning entered into force on October 10, the day it was published.
“We are all responsible for normal election and for provision of financial, technical and organizational work”, - he said addressing heads of regions.
According to President in this situation some political forces may destabilize the situation or even call to unrest, Regional Administrations heads should provide political and economic stability in their regions.
“I ask you to stay indifferent towards any provocations. Your mission as President’s team, as my team, is to keep the situation in the regions entrusted to you under control”, - said Victor Yushchenko.
President Victor Yushchenko gave an interview to Ukrainian TV channel ‘Inter’.
During the interview President was answering questions about pre-term discontinuance of Verkhovna Rada functioning and early parliamentary election.
The interview was taken by ‘Details of the week’ program presenter Andriy Danylevych.
President Victor Yushchenko gathered representatives of large Ukrainian banks today, to discuss with them the situation in financial and bank sectors of Ukrainian economy and to work out a plan on how to maintain stability in these sectors.
Separate attention the participants of the meeting dedicated to the events around ‘Prominvestbank’.
Speaking at the meeting President said that the most important thing is to maintain calmness among clients of Ukrainian banks and to prevent them loosing confidence in bank system.
He also stressed that for stabilizing the situation beside cooperation between the Government and the National Bank, appropriate behavior and actions from the participants of the market is necessary.
Besides, Victor Yushchenko suggested holding an extraordinary meeting of the Cabinet dedicated to discussing how to minimize influence of world financial crisis on Ukrainian market.
President Victor Yushchenko wrote a letter to Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko.
In his letter President informed the Prime Minister that according to information he received from Central Election Commission, 417,5 million hryvnyas are required to hold pre-term parliamentary election on December 7, 2008.
According to President the problem is that the Verkhovna Rada cannot allot these funds through introduction of appropriate alterations to 2008 budget, because its functioning was discontinued.
Therefore President Yushchenko asked the Government to take the sum needed for holding the election out of budgetary reserve, which’s purpose is financing unforeseen expenses.
To execute that, President Yushchenko asked Prime Minister Tymoshenko to hold an extraordinary meeting of the Cabinet on October 11, 2008 to discuss the issue and to provide the funds.
Russia is planning to return to the implementation of the Ukrainian-Russian An 70 project. Ukrainian First Deputy Industry Minister Vitaliy Nemylostyvy was speaking at a roundtable entitled "Ukraine-NATO: the potential for cooperation in the military-industrial complex".
In his opinion, this project will become "more ambitious than joint projects between Ukraine and France on helicopters and a corvette." He said that that are all prerequisites for the signing of the necessary agreements with Russia by the end of this year.
Nemylostyvy said that Ukraine had proposed to Russia to involve European companies in the project, in particular, in the question of creating certain systems that are common for EU countries. He also said that the project would be successful if it becomes interesting for European partners.
An 70 aircraft is a medium-distance transport aircraft, which can transport a cargo of up to 47 tons, with its cruiser speed being 820-870 kilometers per hour.
The Ukrainian Industry Ministry is planning to resume the annual production of 3,000 tons of mono- and polycrystalline silicon at Zaporizhzhia-based Semiconductor Plant.
Such a clause is stipulated in a draft program for the development of chemical and steel industries in 2009-2013. The annual production of silicon is to be increased to 5,000 tons in the future.
The overall amount of funds to implement the Ministry's program is estimated at UAH 2.75 billion (USD 1 / UAH 4.92).
A delegation from the International Monetary Fund (IMF), representatives from the Cabinet of Ministers and the National Bank of Ukraine (NBU) will hold talks on the endorsement of a plan weakening the negative influence of the global financial crisis on Ukraine during a meeting in Kyiv on Thursday.
The NBU is interested in cheap loans of the fund, the amount of which can be USD 15 billion.
Experts believe that the allocation of money will be accompanied with tough conditions.
IMF Resident Representative in Ukraine Balazs Horvath said that the fund would study Ukraine's latest economic reforms and achievements and which support the country needs to settle a difficult situation. "There is still no crisis, but we should predict all scenarios," he said.
Ukraine is now cooperating with the IMF in a regime of talks. According to the Finance Minsitry, Ukraine's debt to the IMF was USD 247.9 million by September 1 and the country should clear this debt by 2009.
Horvath said in late September that despite the difficult economic situation in the country, the government would cope with it without raising loans at the IMF. Two weeks later, Ukraine joined a list of countries, to which the IMF is ready to provide loans to tackle the financial crisis.
A total of 3.028 million tons of coal has been accumulated at storehouses of the Ukrainian thermoelectric power plants, which is 602,000 tons more than by the same period last year, fuel and Energy Ministry spokesman Fent Di told.
He specified that last year, 2.426 million tons of coal had been piled up by this date.
SJSC Energy Company of Ukraine has 2.084 million tons of coal at its storages.
Ukraine's Economics Minister Bohdan Danylyshyn is convinced that the Ukrainian banking system will be shortly changed, he was speaking at a briefing October 15.
"Our banking system now operates in the way it has been working over the last seven years. A decision will be adopted in the near future that will be coordinated with interests of depositors and producers," Danylyshyn said.
According to him, the Economics Ministry expects finance-economic stabilization following anti-crisis measures taken by the Cabinet of Ministers and the National Bank of Ukraine. B. Danylyshyn also said the very NBU measures to restrict the granting of deposits in advance will contribute to the stabilization of Ukraine's banking system.
With the goal to alleviate the effect of the global finance crisis on Ukraine's economics and in order to ensure the stability of the Ukrainian banking system, the National Bank Board prohibited banks from granting deposits in advance.
According to the program of preparation to Euro-2012, works on Ukrainian highways were not sufficiently financed by over UAH 1 billion, Mykola Berezovskyi, deputy head of the State Service of Automobile Roads of Ukraine (UkrAvtoDor) told a hotline of the Ukrainian Cabinet of Ministers.
He noted that according to the 2008 plan, the works on the mentioned sites are in fact fulfilled, however, UkrAvtoDor still has not received funds for it and, thus, the establishment has no possibility to pay to work executors.
"We intended to obtain UAH 800 million commercial loan this year," Mykola Berezovskyi said, however, unfortunately, the tenders we held did not give the desired result.
According to him, at present, UkrAvtoDor sites are financed by 64% according to the state target program of preparation to Euro-2012.
The most complicated and the most expensive Euro-2012 sites are the following roads: Kyiv - Chop, Kyiv - Kovel - Yahodyn, Kypti - Hlukhiv - Bachivsk, Kharkiv - Krasnohrad - Pereshchepyne.
The works are going on at these sites and next year they will be fulfilled completely, Mykola Berezovskyi noted.