Business news from Ukraine

Ukraine is ready to extend Russian gas transit at initiative of European Union countries

Ukraine is ready to extend the transit of Russian gas through its gas transportation system (GTS) at the initiative of the European Union countries, but will not extend the current contract or sign a new one with Gazprom, Prime Minister Denis Shmygal said at a press conference in Kiev on Monday.

“We are certainly not going to negotiate with the aggressor country to extend (the transit contract) and put our signatures under the agreement, but we have had repeated talks with European leaders on the basis of the European Commission. If European countries will act as a consortium or one of the European partners will act as a transit company for its own gas, we are ready to provide such a service. Here the initiative is on the side of the EU and our European partners,” he said.

“Group, association, consortium… It could be the EC, a group of European countries that are interested in preserving transit,” Shmygal specified.

At the same time, according to the Prime Minister, the GTS of Ukraine is ready to function without the transit of Russian natural gas.

As reported, the transit of Russian natural gas through the gas transportation system (GTS) of Ukraine in 2023 decreased by 28.4% (by 5 billion 812.6 million cubic meters) compared to 2022 – to 14 billion 646.6 million cubic meters.

The contract between Naftohaz Ukrainy and Gazprom for the organization of transportation, the transportation agreement between NAK and OGTSU, as well as the inter-operator agreement between OGTSU and Gazprom were signed on December 30, 2019. The contract provides for transit of 40 billion cubic meters of gas per year in 2021-2024.

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Capital of Philippines has become world leader in terms of price growth for luxury housing

Luxury housing in the capital of the Philippines, the most populous city in the world, Manila, rose by 26.3% in 2023 – the highest among the 100 global markets monitored by Knight Frank, writes Mansion Global, citing the company’s report.

The second place in terms of growth was taken by the leader of the previous rating – Dubai, where the cost of luxury residential real estate increased by 16%.

The Bahamas took the third place with a 15% increase, while the fourth and fifth places were shared by the Portuguese Algarve region and South Africa’s Cape Town (+12.3%).

Global luxury housing prices grew by 3.1% last year, while 80 out of 100 monitored markets avoided recession.

Among the world’s regions, the best result was shown by Asia-Pacific, where luxury real estate rose by 3.8%. In North, South and Central America, growth was 3.6%.

The results of 2023 were significantly better than the forecasts of economists at the beginning of the year, said Kate Everett-Allen, head of international residential real estate research at Knight Frank, in the report.

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Igor Liski plans to build window glass plant in Ukraine

Businessman Igor Liski has announced the construction of a $240 million window glass plant in Kyiv region.

“I can now officially announce our new super-ambitious project, which we have been developing for over a year,” Liski wrote on Facebook.

Liski told The Wall Street Journal that he plans to invest about $80 million in the project. According to him, raising project financing is the main challenge when launching a project.

Liski is the owner of the investment holding EFI Group (Effective Investments). His investment areas include healthcare and medtech, paper, food, and woodworking industries, and agricultural supplies.

The company’s businesses include Feednova, an animal fats and feed additives producer, Medical Star healthcare network, Zhytomyr Cardboard Mill, Sam Ecopack, a cardboard packaging manufacturer, Forest Technology, an agricultural products supplier, Efi Agro, and Doc.ua, an online medical hub.

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Conservatives win parliamentary elections in Iran

The Conservatives have won a majority of votes in the Iranian parliamentary elections, a number of Iranian media reported on Monday.

On March 4, the election commission completed the vote count in the elections to the country’s legislature. According to preliminary results, conservative candidates are leading in all provinces of Iran, including Tehran, local media reported.

The candidates will compete for 45 of the 290 seats in the parliament in the second round.

Approximately 25 million Iranian citizens took part in the March 1 elections to the country’s parliament and the Council of Experts. According to preliminary unofficial data, the turnout was approximately 41%.

A record number of candidates were allowed to participate in the parliamentary elections – more than 15.2 thousand people, which was almost 75% of the total number of candidates who initially registered. About 1.7 thousand of the candidates admitted to the elections are women.

According to the Iranian Constitution, five seats in the 290-seat parliament should go to representatives of religious minorities. 144 candidates competed for 88 seats in the Council of Experts, which elects the country’s Supreme Leader.

Many candidates who advocate reforms in Iran were banned from participating in the parliamentary elections, and some political figures, including former Iranian President Hassan Rouhani, were not allowed to run for the Council of Experts, Iranian media reported.

The first meeting of the newly convoked parliament will be held in late May.

Earlier, the Experts Club think tank made a video dedicated to the top 10 elections in the world this year. More detailed analysis is available at

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“Zaporizhstal” doubled its rolled steel output

In January-February of this year, Zaporizhstal Iron and Steel Works increased its rolled steel output by 2 times compared to the same period last year, up to 395.3 thousand tons from 196 thousand tons.

According to the company, steel production during this period increased by 2.25 times to 471.1 thousand tons, and pig iron production by 75.7% to 512.3 thousand tons.

In February, Zaporizhstal produced 248.8 thousand tons of iron, 235.4 thousand tons of steel, and shipped 198.5 thousand tons of rolled products.

As reported, in 2023, Zaporizhstal increased its rolled steel output by 57.2% compared to 2022, to 2 million 54.7 thousand tons, steel by 65.4%, to 2 million 466.9 thousand tons, and pig iron by 35.3%, to 2 million 718.9 thousand tons.

“Zaporizhstal is one of the largest industrial enterprises in Ukraine, whose products are in great demand among consumers both in the domestic market and in many countries of the world.

“Zaporizhstal is in the process of integration into Metinvest Group, whose major shareholders are System Capital Management (71.24%) and Smart Holding Group (23.76%).

Metinvest Holding LLC is the management company of Metinvest Group.

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Shareholders of Forte Life Insurance Company will increase its authorized capital by UAH 31 mln

The shareholders of Forte Life Insurance Company (Kyiv) at a meeting on February 23 decided to increase the authorized capital by UAH 31 million to UAH 48 million, according to the information disclosure system of the National Securities and Stock Market Commission of Ukraine (NSSMC).

It is also noted that the nominal value of one share is UAH 1 thousand, and the placement price is UAH 4,541 thousand.

The purpose of the placement of securities is to bring the authorized capital in line with the Law of Ukraine “On Insurance”. The proceeds will be used to place on deposit accounts in banking institutions, purchase domestic government bonds, and acquire other assets acceptable in accordance with the Law of Ukraine “On Insurance” and the regulations of the National Bank.

The notice also specifies that the placement of shares may lead to a change of ownership of a large block of shares in the issuer. At the time of the decision, the owner of 99.8% of the company’s authorized capital is Oksana Kuleshina.

As reported, Forte Life Insurance Company (formerly Insurance Union Life), registered in 2005, specializes in providing life insurance services.

In February 2021, the company announced that Astrum Ukraine LLC, which owns 99% of the shares of Forte Life Insurance Company (Kyiv), reduced its stake to 0%, and Oksana Kuleshina became the owner of this stake.

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