Business news from Ukraine

ARCELORMITTAL KRYVYI RIH BOOSTS STEEL SMELTING BY OVER 15% IN 2016

KYIV. Jan 4 (Interfax-Ukraine) – ArcelorMittal Kryvyi Rih boosted steel smelting by over 15% in 2016, to 7 million tonnes, the company said in a press release on Tuesday.

The enterprise met the 2016 target and broke a record of the past years smelting 7 million tonnes – earlier the company smelted this volume in 2008.

The target of 7 million was an ambitious goal. The enterprise met it thanks to effective operation of all divisions of ArcelorMittal Kryvyi Rih.

In 2017 the enterprise will continue implementing large-scale investment projects that would help to reduce production cost, increase effectiveness of production and improve the environment situation in Kryvy Rih and the region, the company said.

GOVERNMENT FACILITATES EXPORTS OF SCRAP METAL

KYIV. Jan 4 (Interfax-Ukraine) – Ukraine’s Cabinet of Ministers has facilitated exports of scrap ferrous and nonferrous metals, revoking the registration of foreign economic contracts related to transactions with scrap metal.

The amendments were made to some government resolutions in resolution No. 1035 dated December 28, 2016. The resolution also annuls some previous government resolutions.

“The government has relaxed the procedure for exporting scrap metals. The decision would help to liberalize foreign economic activities and liquidate barriers in foreign trade. The institute of registration of scrap metal exports contracts was annulled as such not having economic effect. The resolution revokes the obligatory red tape procedure for this registration. It permits free exports of scrap metal, improves business climate in the country and significantly reduces corruption risks in the sector,” the government said in an explanatory note to the document.

The authors of the resolution expect that scrap metal exports would grow and currency income would increase. The balance between scrap metal producers, exporters and consumers will be established. Foreign economic traders would have to show less permits for customs clearance of exported goods.

GOVERNMENT SEEKS TO DISCUSS CREATION OF AGENCY FOR EUROPEAN INTEGRATION BEFORE JULY 2017

KYIV. Jan 4 (Interfax-Ukraine) – Ukraine’s Cabinet of Ministers seeks to discuss the creation of the Agency for European Integration in the second quarter of 2017.

According to the draft action plan for medium-term outlook until 2020 the agency could be created as a central executive power authority with a special status.

It is planned that the agency would help to apply a centralized approach to the implementation of tasks in the European integration area and to observe Ukraine’s legal liabilities in the area.

It is planned to approve the communications strategy in the sphere of European integration for 2017-2020 in Q2 2017.

CHINA INTERESTED IN STRENGTHENING COOPERATION WITH UKRAINE – XI JINPING

KYIV. Jan 4 (Interfax-Ukraine) – President of the People’s Republic of China Xi Jinping congratulated Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko and Ukrainian people on the occasion of the 25th anniversary of diplomatic relations between Beijing and Kyiv.

“In 25 years after establishing diplomatic relations Chinese-Ukrainian relations stably develop. Cooperation between the two countries in trade, economic, investment, agricultural, scientific, cultural and other spheres have achieved substantial results. The contents of Chinese-Ukrainian strategic partnership are permanently expanding, which brings real benefits to the two countries and their people,” Xi Jinping said in a greeting published by the press service of the Ukrainian president on Wednesday.

“China pays large attention to the development of Chinese-Ukrainian relations. China is ready to use the best opportunity of the 25th anniversary of diplomatic relations between the two countries based on mutual respect and mutual benefits to come to the further strengthening of the foundation for friendly cooperation between the two countries, promotion of bilateral relations and cooperation in all spheres to have even more achievements,” he said.

CABINET INTENDS TO CREATE 25 REGIONAL DEVELOPMENT AGENCIES IN 2017

KYIV. Jan 3 (Interfax-Ukraine) – The Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine intends until the end of 2017 to ensure the creation of 25 regional development agencies the mission of which involves assistance to local authorities in the implementation of programs and projects of regional development and improvement of investment attractiveness.

The relevant data is contained in the draft of medium term plan of priority actions of the government until 2020.

In addition, the Cabinet plans to improve the system of regional investment projects financed by the State Fund for Regional Development.

According to the government, the current system does not provide a guaranteed stable funding for the duration of projects implementation, giving rise to incomplete construction projects and does not allow achieve the desired effect.

In addition, the Cabinet notes the need to ensure the transition from financing of projects aimed at solving current local problems to projects that merely create workplaces, innovative products and those improving standards of living.

The government also intends to provide regions with access to European funding instruments of regional development, including cross-border cooperation. For example, in 2017 the Cabinet plans to develop an international agreement on Ukraine’s participation in the Danube Transnational Program as earlier the European Commission decided to allocate EUR 5 million for Ukraine to participate in this program.

KYIVSTAR TO ENTER FINANCIAL SERVICES MARKET IN EARLY 2017

KYIV. Jan 3 (Interfax-Ukraine) – Kyivstar, the leading Ukrainian mobile operator, intends in early 2017 with the help of its subsidiary StarMoney LLC to launch the first set of financial services, in particular, public transfers and payments to third parties.

The press service of the company told the agency, bank issuing electronic money in the project will be state-controlled Ukrgasbank and Pravex-Bank controlled by Italia’s Intesa Sanpaolo, selected at a tender. Currently, the company is conducting a tender to select one of payment systems.

“The project to provide Kyivstar subscribers with mobile financial services consists of several blocks. One of them is currently undergoing pilot testing, while its commercial launch is scheduled for early 2017,” the press service said.

As reported, StarMoney LLC in June received a license from the National Bank of Ukraine for money transfers in the national currency.