"Kyiv and Ankara must intensify their political dialogue, as it will stimulate development of business contacts," said the Ukrainian President.
From his part, President of Turkey noted that cooperation between law enforcement agencies of Ukraine and Turkey should be more effective. "Now we face important challenges, such as fighting terrorism and drug trafficking, the need for creation of common security area in the Black Sea," stressed Abdullah Gül.
He also emphasized that cooperation between Ukraine and Turkey in energy sector is among the priorities.
The Ecumenical Patriarch congratulated Viktor Yanukovych on his election as the President of Ukraine and wished him "very fruitful" tenure for the benefit of the Ukrainian people.
Patriarch Bartholomew said that he remembers with sincere affection his visit to Ukraine two years ago, when he had the opportunity "to get acquainted with the progress and holiness of the Ukrainian Orthodox nation." "We always pray for continued stability and prosperity of your beloved country. We know about the schism between the Orthodox in Ukraine, which saddens us a lot. We pray that this schism healed as soon as possible," stressed the Ecumenical Patriarch. He also said that recently he had made the official visit to Russia where he had spoken to "his brother" Patriarch Cyril. According to him, during their conversation the two Patriarchs repeatedly mentioned the fact that both for Russia and Ukraine, the Church of Constantinople is a cradle.
"Recently, when we were in Russia, we said we believe that all our separated brethren would return to the canonical Church, because true salvation is in it," added the Ecumenical Patriarch. "We are more than confident that during your presidency you will do your best to heal these wounds and restore unity of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church. We never stop praying and asking God to restore unity of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church," he said.
From his part, President Yanukovych expressed his conviction that process of church consolidation is extremely important. "It is impossible to build a strong country without faith," said the President.
Viktor Yanukovych also told the Ecumenical Patriarch about his pilgrimage to the holy Mount Athos where he prayed for Ukraine.
At the meeting sides have discussed development of relations between Ukraine and Azerbaijan, including those trade-economic.
Viktor Yanukovych expressed admiration of Azerbaijan’s steady economy, which has exhibited 9% GDP growth in 2009, even despite the financial crisis. He also invited the Azerbaijani President to visit Ukraine soon so sides had another opportunity to develop the dialogue between the two states.
Mentioning his participation in the Conference on Interaction and Confidence Building Measures in Asia, President Yanukovych said that he got added evidence that the organization is very important for maintaining security in Asia and even beyond – in the Eurasian region too. Ukraine, Viktor Yanukovych said, is interested in ensuring that terrorism, proliferation of nuclear materials and other security threats were fought effectively.
From his part, Ilham Aliyev emphasized that Ukraine is a close friend and strategic partner of Azerbaijan. "We really care about realizing our bilateral potential in full," he said.
The Azerbaijani President also expressed confidence that under the leadership of President Yanukovych, Ukraine would make a lot of progress. "Hopefully, on a firm grounds of mutual sympathy and benevolence of our peoples to one another, we will build our relations based on friendship and common interests that will benefit our peoples," said Ilham Aliyev.
The sides also discussed preparations for Kazakh President’s official visit to Ukraine. Viktor Yanukovych and Nursultan Nazarbayev agreed to summarize work on practical implementation of 2010-2011 Ukraine-Kazakhstan Action Plan ("Roadmap-3"), in particular, to define what has already been done and which aspects should be paid special attention to, in order to speed up the implementation of the document.
Viktor Yanukovych and Nursultan Nazarbayev have also agreed to develop joint projects in machinery and aircraft construction, space industry, energy sector, to intensify military and technical cooperation and so on.
"We agreed with the Greek President to greatly intensify our relations. To do that, we need to elaborate a number of agreements at the level of intergovernmental commission," said Viktor Yanukovych. According to him, having tourism potential, Ukraine is extremely interested in great experience of Greece in this field. "We would like to sign several agreements that would open this way for us," he said.
In particular, Viktor Yanukovych mentioned introduction of tourist ferry transportation between Ukraine and Greece. "A system, which could improve the quality of tourism and create appropriate conditions for tourists, should be established," stressed President Yanukovych, adding that the fact that we are to host Euro 2012 Finals could also contribute to the popularity of the project.
"Crimea is a very interesting region with ancient history, and it certainly must be open to the world. We must discuss all these issues," concluded the President.
"We will establish a high level strategic council between Turkey and Ukraine," said Viktor Yanukovych explaining that the body would be chaired by the Prime Minister of Turkey and the President of Ukraine.
According to Viktor Yanukovych, there is a number of directions, on which our countries should intensify their relations, particularly cooperation of the two states’ businesses, their bilateral trade, etc.
"It is also a very interesting question. I believe that to the arrival of the Prime Minister of Turkey in Ukraine, our intergovernmental group would elaborate its suggestions, and thus we will open opportunities to diversify our energy supplies," said Viktor Yanukovych.
In his speech President Yanukovych said that last week he had introduced to the Parliament the bill on foundations of domestic and foreign policy that provides active and constructive participation of Ukraine in building mutual trust between states and overcoming traditional and new security threats.
Viktor Yanukovych noted that in order to achieve that, all the prerequisites were created, the main of which is internal political stability.
"New political leadership initiated a program of systemic reforms aimed at fighting poverty and economic growth. It will allow Ukraine to actively contribute to global efforts to combat common challenges.
Ukraine, being an observer, highly appreciates the opportunity of cooperation within the CICA. I would like to emphasize that Ukraine is your good neighbor, friend and reliable partner. Our strategic goal is to bring relations with countries of your region to a new level.
Something has already been done, but there is still much more to do.
We are open to political dialogue and ready to be mediators if needed. We would like to actively participate in implementation of major projects that are discussed in the framework of your forum, such as development of transport corridors and searching for new routes for energy exports from Asia to Europe. After all, the shortest and most reliable transit routes are through Ukraine. We are also ready to contribute in addressing food security issue in the region," said the President.
"Ukraine is interested in substantial deepening of trade and economic relations with Asian states. In this context, I would like to draw your attention to the potential of joint economic projects in the Black Sea region.
Finally, we would like to strengthen cultural, interethnic and interfaith cooperation within the CICA states," said Viktor Yanukovych.
At the end of his speech, President Yanukovych thanked Turkish President Abdullah Gül for hospitality and wished him success in Turkey's future presidency of the conference.
During his working visit to Turkey the President will take part in the Conference on Interaction and Confidence-Building Measures in Asia. Tomorrow, June 8, Ukrainian President is scheduled to address the conference.
In addition, President Yanukovych is to hold a number of bilateral meetings, particularly with President of Kazakhstan Nursultan Nazarbayev, President of Turkey Abdullah Gül, President of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev and Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin.
"Ukraine is interested in expanding bilateral trade and economic cooperation, which have slightly shrunk due to the global financial recession,” said the President of Ukraine.
According to the President, among the priorities is restoring and increasing bilateral turnover, as current Greek-Ukrainian cooperation does not meet the potential of the two countries.
"I think that Ukraine could make use of experience of Greek companies that developed projects in preparation for 2004 Olympics in Athens,” said Viktor Yanukovych. On the other hand, he said, Ukrainian companies have significant experience in designing and building oil and gas pipelines, and therefore could be involved as subcontractors in such projects in Greece.
Cooperation in machinery and shipbuilding as well as in development of renewable energy between Ukraine and Greece could also be beneficial according to President Yanukovych.
From his part, the Greek President praised the attention of the Ukrainian government and the President of Ukraine to the needs of a large Greek diaspora of Ukraine. According to Karolos Papoulias, such attention of the Ukrainian authorities to the Greek community is working to strengthen the historic ties between our countries.
The Greek President reminded that tens of thousands of Greek nationals are living in Ukraine.
Clearly, he noted, this state of affairs only "strengthens cordial relations between Ukraine and Greece.”
Viktor Yanukovych noted that yesterday he had reported to the country on 100 days of his activities as the President. "Regaining confidence of the Ukrainian people in the government is very important," he said.
According to the President, there is a lot of work ahead, including adoption of a number of laws that would influence public life and development of the economy. It is also necessary to implement a number of projects of regional development, such as work to attract investment to every region of Ukraine.
"This year, during consideration of the budget, we had the initial deficit of about 12%. Then, we set ourselves the task to reduce the budget deficit so that it was below 6%. The final budget was adopted with a deficit of 5.6%! As for today, based on the dynamics that we see, we will approach the end of the year with a deficit no higher than it is provided by the budget," said President Yanukovych.
In addition, the President said, clear signs of recovery in the national economy are already observable now. In particular, growth figures are 4.8%, 12.6% and 30% for GDP, industrial production and exports respectively. The import growth is about 8%. The positive balance of foreign trade for the first time in recent years is $ 2 billion. All these figures suggest, said President Yanukovych, that Ukrainian economy is recovering.
"But we still have much to do for ordinary people to feel that," said Viktor Yanukovych, adding that first of all it applies to increasing wages.
The President separately focused on the subject of internal and external debts of Ukraine, which are now "enormous". "Currently, Ukraine performs its obligations. This year is very difficult for our country. But we deliberately initiated the beginning of reforms this year, because we could not wait longer. We are on the brink of disaster,” said Viktor Yanukovych.
He also spoke about the situation with the price of gas: "We managed to significantly reduce gas price in Ukraine. This reduction allowed boosting production, increasing incomes, improving the situation in housing and local budgets. All priority areas of life of the country were influenced by this reduction.”
Viktor Yanukovych said that he is optimistic about the future, though believes that 2010 will be remembered as one of the most difficult years in the history of our country due to the need to tackle the crisis in the economy. On the other hand, he said, 2011 will be the year of “actual beginning of system reforms”.
"We must strive for a fair model and a fair country. We must seek to support middle class," said Viktor Yanukovych, adding that now about 30% of the Ukrainians live below the poverty line.
"That is unacceptable. We must work to make state resources, public funds and government policy contribute to development of middle class, decreasing number of poor people and making the rich share with the poor," said the President.
Certainly, he noted, we must be ready for ambiguous reaction of the society to reforms being implemented. "I, first of all, must not care about my own ratings but development of the whole country," said Viktor Yanukovych.
The Head of State told the journalists that yesterday, till late at night he had worked on the telephone with Emergencies Minister Nestor Shufrych and Lviv governor Vasyl Horbal.
"Everything that needs to be done will certainly be done," stressed Viktor Yanukovych.
The President also noted that current problems in Lviv region are largely complicated by the fact that funds allocated in 2008 to eliminate the consequences of disaster were stolen, so, consequently, the required work has never been conducted.
"We will be moving forward and the faster, the better. We must choose optimal speed for different directions, which will enable us to systematically and in a balanced manner implement a number of economic reforms in our country," said the President at the Second Sitting of the Committee on Economic Reforms.
In President’s opinion this committee will be working on implementation of reforms, adoption of necessary laws and so on, as during the implementation process the issues of improving adopted decisions will inevitably arise.
Certainly, he noted, to support progress the funds are needed. "Therefore, successful work of the government, economy and industry will be possible only when backed up by reforms in our economy," said the President.
The Head of State expressed confidence that in order to be effective, the government must implement the adopted decisions and achieve goals set in them. Thus, the Committee on Economic Reforms will be taking part in elaboration of a number of bills and government decrees. In this context, the President praised Iryna Akimova’s suggestion to establish an executive body of the Committee headed by the Prime Minister.
"In cooperation with the working group, experts, academics and representatives of international consulting companies, we will be working to improve and implement the program of economic reforms in our country," said President Yanukovych.
The President also said that during his today's telephone conversation with IMF Managing Director Dominique Strauss-Kahn they agreed that one of the leading experts of the Fund would arrive in Ukraine already next week. "Together, we will consider both strong and weak aspects of the initiated reforms. Certainly, opinions of the IMF and the World Bank will be taken into account. The planned reforms will also be our progress towards European integration," he said.
The Head of State stressed importance of local government leadership involving in reforming. "I suggest that regions initiated mechanisms to complete implementation of reforms in the fields already now, as without effective regional work it’s almost impossible to implement these reforms.
You will become that effective mechanism within the Committee on Economic Reforms to conduct work in the regions," concluded Viktor Yanukovych.
He also praised the fact that significant number of expert commentaries were included in the revised version presented today. "I'll be suggesting my colleagues that they continued to take part in further discussions of this document," said Mr. Raiser.
He also noted that a lot of his comments echoed the opinion of the IMF Representative in Ukraine. "The program provides a thorough assessment. We share those goals and objectives, which are set in the program. We hope that this program will become a basis for consensus, without which implementing reforms will be very difficult," said M. Raiser.
The World Bank Country Director in Ukraine said that it also necessary to revise and make more gradual the timing and sequence of reforms, which in some cases are too pressing. He also added that by solving this issue they hope to contribute to development of a specific action plan.
He thanked the representatives of the Presidential Administration and Government for sharing "a very ambitious program" of legislative changes. "I think we all will benefit from this cooperation, having an opportunity to consider draft bills and make our contribution to them at the early stage. I would like to thank you for your cooperation," said the World Bank Country Director in Ukraine.
In addition, IMF Managing Director Dominique Strauss-Kahn said that next week his advisor will arrive in Ukraine to assess the economic situation in the country.
Accreditation of media representatives is held by The Department of Communications from June 1, 10.00, until June 3, 17.00,
Media representatives are invited to "The Ukrainian House" at 10.00 for passing security check-up.
The event will be broadcast live by National Television Company of Ukraine TV.
In the President’s presence at the newly opened sports ground kids began final match of mini-football championship among the orphanages and boarding schools of Kyiv region.
Viktor Yanukovych presented the teams with gifts and made the symbolic kick-off.
Teams from 13 boarding schools and 16 orphanages participated in Kyiv region championship. The finals were held among the teams from Brovary, Vyshgorod, Vasylkivskyi and Borodyanskyi districts. The winner teams will have an opportunity to go for recreation to the International Children's Center "Artek".
Greeting those present, Viktor Yanukovych said that the new sports ground will help future athletes develop their skills. "I wish that you will grow up healthy and educated, will always be in a good mood and have inspiration to play sports and study well. I wish that you will have a decent future and every one of you will choose your own path in life," said the President. He also added that in order to achieve their goals, children will definitely need to do their best.
Viktor Yanukovych stressed the importance of solving issues related to orphans’ needs. The Head of State, in particular, voiced his decision to open the doors of the Government Clinical Hospital ‘Feofaniya’ for this category of children.
Viktor Yanukovych also told the journalists that in the nearest future a new system of regular health survey of children, enrolled in orphanages and boarding schools, will be launched in Ukraine. "We will create a system that will allow annual examination and treatment of these children," he said.
According to the President, a special sports school for talented children will be created.
"I will personally supervise state care of orphans," emphasized Viktor Yanukovych, adding that the government will exert every effort so that every child had an opportunity to get a profession, conditions for learning and so on.
"This systematic approach foresees participation of regional and local governments’ leadership and philanthropists. We will be inviting people who are willing to invest in our children's future, in development of this infrastructure, to create charitable funds," said Viktor Yanukovych.
He stressed that relevant program will be developed soon. "And it will be implemented in our country," concluded the President.