Business news from Ukraine

INTERNATIONAL FINANCE CORPORATION PROVIDES EUR 12.5 MLN FOR TRANSPORT DEVELOPMENT IN MARIUPOL

The International Finance Corporation (IFC), part of the World Bank Group, has signed a loan agreement on providing financing in the amount of EUR 12.5 million to buy 64 large buses, the press service of the Finance Ministry has reported.
According to the press release, the funds are also sent to the reconstruction of the city bus depot, the renovation of repair equipment and the development of the city’s transport infrastructure management. The project will increase the capacity of public transport in the city and reduce hydrocarbon emissions into the atmosphere.
“Since 2014, decentralization is one of the key priorities of the government, and we have already transferred many financial resources to municipalities, and with them responsibility. Therefore, it is extremely important for us that international partners support this approach with financial resources. IFC investments in Mariupol infrastructure, 30 km from the front line is the best proof of our partners’ confidence in Ukraine. We hope that the financing of municipalities will become one of the important activities of the IFC in the future. We would be very grateful if IFC could become the first IFI [international financial institution] that provides such funding in hryvnia, and the Ministry of Finance is ready to support this idea,” the press service of the ministry reported, citing Deputy Minister for European Integration Yuriy Heletei.
As reported, referring to IFC, the loan will amount to 14% of the city’s projected multi-sectoral capital investment program of $90 million in 2019-2010.
IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, is a large international investor focused on the private sector in Ukraine. The total amount of its investment in long-term projects in various economic sectors of Ukraine has reached over $3.2 billion.

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ALCOHOL PRODUCING HOLDING BAYADERA PLANS TO INVEST UAH 100 MLN IN DEVELOPMENT

Bayadera Group, a large alcohol producing holding in the Ukrainian market, this year seeks to invest UAH 80-100 million in planting new vineyards and modernization of plants. “In 2019, we are planning to invest UAH 80-100 million, first of all, in vineyards and modernization of plants. This will improve the quality, reduce the cost of production and increase efficiency,” Director General of Bayadera Group Anatoliy Korchynsky said in an interview with Interfax-Ukraine.
In particular, in 2019 the group intends to plant about 200 hectares in Mykolaiv region.
According to the director general, Bayadera Group is considering the transition from the wine cork to the screw cap.
“Considering the global problem with cork, everyone will come to this in the next few years. In Europe this is already a reality, but in Ukraine the buyer still does not understand it. However, we are already preparing for the changeover of production,” Korchynsky said.
The group also conducts several experiments in terms of sales performance.
“If they are successful, this will also require certain investments,” Korchynsky said.
In 2018, Bayadera Group invested about UAH 80 million: some UAH 35 million in the agricultural sector, UAH 20 million – in plants, and near UAH 25 million – in distribution. In general, the alcohol holding has several areas of investment: agriculture, modernization and renewal of production facilities, as well as distribution.
Bayadera Group was established in 1991. Its owners are Natalia Bondareva and Sviatoslav Nechytailo. The company owns such assets in the alcohol industry as distribution companies and alcohol production facilities in Ukraine and Belarus. It produces wine, vermouth and cognac and is the exclusive importer of international alcohol brands in Ukraine.
The main trademarks are Persha Gildiya, Kozatska Rada, Hlibny Dar, Koblevo, Marengo, and others.

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IRELAND’S LOW COST RYANAIR CONSIDERS UKRAINE AS TOP THREE PROMISING COUNTRIES FOR IT HUB DEVELOPMENT

Ireland’s low cost airline Ryanair is considering Ukraine as the top three promising countries for development of an IT hub in 2019, Ryanair Chief Commercial Officer David O’Brien said at a press conference in the Infrastructure Ministry of Ukrainey. The airline’s engineer is visiting several cities of Ukraine, he said. The airline is mulling a possibility of opening the IT center in Ukraine in the future, and when reaching the critical mass for flights we would consider a possibility of opening the plane maintenance facilities in the country, he said.
O’Brien said that the negotiations are being held with airports of Odesa, Kherson and Kharkiv. He said that Ryanair is discussing a possibility of launching flights from regional airports of Ukraine, but the issue could be solved in several years. “We will receive 40 or 50 planes in winter 2019 and then we will talk about new cities in Ukraine,” he said.
Earlier, at a meeting with Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko, O’Brien said that the result of the previous meeting with the head of state was the introduction of the position of Chief Technology Officer by Ryanair together with the software lab. He expressed hope that the fourth office of this lab will be established in Ukraine. As reported, Ryanair plans to invest $1.5 billion in Ukraine by 2023, expanding the fleet to 15 planes. Ryanair offers flights from Kyiv to six cities in Poland, one destination in Germany, Spain, Lithuania, Slovakia, the U.K. and Sweden, as well as two destinations from Lviv to Germany and Poland, one to the U.K.

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EUROPEAN BANK FOR RECONSTRUCTION AND DEVELOPMENT TO INVEST IN RENEWABLE ENERGY IN UKRAINE

The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) is about to invest from $2 million to $4 million in the development of infrastructure of auctions stimulating renewable energy, EBRD Deputy Director in Ukraine Marina Petrov said during her interview to the Reform.Energy website. “This is the money that we are already asking for now from the donors in order to launch a high-quality auction,” she said. She explained that market players might not be able to perceive poorly organized auctions. “This is very important to keep up the balance of interests in order to receive the most outstanding result,” Petrov said. The auctions will have to be transparent, understandable and in line with legislation.
According to her, the EBRD during Ukraine’s transition to the auctions stimulating renewable energy is ready to share its experience from similar auctions in those countries which were the first ones to introduce such tools. Such or similar auctions are held in Turkey, Poland, Bulgaria, Jordan, Egypt, and Armenia, she said.
The amount is to be allocated within the EBRD’s USELF-III lending facility approved in July this year in the amount of EUR 250 million to support private renewable energy projects in Ukraine, she said.
Speaking at the Ukrainian Financial Forum organized by the ICU Invest Group in Odesa, the EBRD representative said that market operators had questions as for who would be a balancing player on this market. She said that the EBRD was working jointly with the U.S. Agency for International Development to create the market of balancing facilities and invest the funds in more mobile parts of the system, e.g. batteries, gas turbines. “This is next year’s agenda,” Petrov said.
In general, she described the situation on the renewables market as a “quick sprint” – the investment is to be made while the current feed-in tariffs are in effect.
“We’ve got many investors who are mulling over investment this and next year. We have fewer investors who are preparing projects for 2020-2021. We see there will be a steep decline,” she said.
In this connection, she called on the adoption of a law on renewable energy auctions by the end of the current year.
Ukraine has great potential for the development of other sectors of renewable energy, mainly biofuel and small hydro facilities, she said.

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UKRAINE RANKS 17TH IN OPEN DATA DEVELOPMENT RANKING

Ukraine ranked 17th in the open data development ranking according to the Open Data Barometer study, reads the annual report Open Data Barometer from the World Web Foundation. The calculation methodology has changed this year, therefore there are no places in the rating as in the previous years, but the scores calculated allowed us to assess progress in recent years, the report says. In addition to points, the data on the difference between the points of assessment in the current and the first of the ratings were also used to create the evaluation list.
Ukraine is on the second place among the countries that made the greatest progress in the last four years. The authors of the study attributed Ukraine to the group of countries that still claim leadership, but are confidently working towards the discovery of data, the study states.
Ukraine shared the result of 47 points with Argentina. Ukraine is followed by the Philippines (42 points), Chile (40 points), and Indonesia (37 points).
The leaders of the rating were Canada and Britain (76 points each), Australia (75 points), Korea and France (72 points each).
The rating is closed by Saudi Arabia (25 points), and Sierra Leone (22 points).

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BUSINESSMAN KHMELNYTSKY WILL PARTICIPATE IN DEVELOPMENT OF UNIT.CITY COPY IN KAZAKHSTAN

Businessman Vasyl Khmelnytsky’s UFuture investment group will participate in the development of a project to create in Astana (Kazakhstan) a copy of the innovation park UNIT.City, which UFuture has been developing for several years in Kyiv. “I’ve just returned from Kazakhstan, where I was at the invitation of Prime Minister Bakhytzhan Sagintayev. We’ve agreed we will help create an analogue of UNIT.City in the center of Astana,” Khmelnytsky wrote on his Facebook page.
He said starting this autumn UFuture would launch a project to create an eco-system and a university in Astana, following the example of UNIT.City. He added that this project is already known in Kazakhstan, as Kazakh students study at Kyiv’s UNIT Factory.
Khmelnytsky positively assessed the experience of creating an international technopark for IT start-ups at the Astana Hub and the Astana International Financial Center, where residents enjoy a preferential tax regime, British law and an independent court of British judges. UFuture’s press service told the Kyiv-based Interfax-Ukraine news agency that it would be possible to speak about details of the possible participation of the investment group in the Kazakhstan project after the project was prepared.
As earlier reported, UFuture is situated on 25 hectares of land at Kyiv’s motorcycle plant where it is developing the UNIT.City innovation park. The “anchors” of the project are programming factory UNIT Factor created in spring 2016 under partnership with French School 42, and the Technology Companies’ Development Center (TCDC). Khmelnytsky has already announced plans to create similar projects in Lviv and Kharkiv.
UFuture Investment Group, headquartered in Brussels, was established in the autumn of 2017 and unites Khmelnytsky’s business projects. The group includes UDP Renewables, the Bila Tserkva Industrial Park, the innovation parks UNIT.City and LvivTech.City.

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