Business news from Ukraine

EBRD LAUNCHES NEW PROGRAM TO FINANCE CLEAN TECHNOLOGIES IN UKRAINE FINTECC

KYIV. Feb 18 (Interfax-Ukraine) – The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) has launched the EBRD’s Finance and Technology Transfer Centre for Climate Change (FINTECC) programme in Ukraine, EBRD Director for Ukraine Sevki Acuner said at a press conference in Kyiv on Wednesday.

“The three-year programme is supported by $7 million grant funding from the Global Environment Facility (GEF) and a €4 million grant from the EU’s Neighbourhood Investment Facility (NIF). FINTECC will help Ukrainian businesses invest in the best available technologies, which will lead to a reduction in greenhouse gas emissions. These may include energy, materials and water efficiency technologies as well as renewable energy technologies not yet available or rare in Ukraine,” he said.

Acuner said that EBRD plans to provide financing of up to EUR 40 million under the program.

Terry McCallion, Director of the EBRD’s Energy Efficiency and Climate Change team, said that under the programme, individual companies may receive grant funding covering up to 25% of the cost of a new technology and capped at $ 1 million.

He said that EBRD anticipates that around 15 projects will be realized in Ukraine. $500,000 of grant funds will be provided to each project on average.

In turn, Walter Tretton, Head of Energy, Climate, Transport and Environment section at the EU Delegation to Ukraine, said that several programmes will be organized for Ukraine soon. This concerns the EU for business to support Ukrainian exporters who mainly present innovative products.

“I hope that the programme will be approved if not in the next several weeks, but in coming months,” he said.

Tretton said that the new programme to finance energy efficient projects in the housing sector of Ukraine will be organized via EBRD and local banks.

TOP 100 STATE-RUN COMPANIES SEE UAH 2.2 BLN IN PROFIT IN JAN-SEPT 2015 – ECONOMY MINISTRY

KYIV. Feb 18 (Interfax-Ukraine) – Top 100 largest state-run companies saw net profit of UAH 2.2 billion in January-September 2015 compared to loss of UAH 66.5 billion a year ago, the Economic Development and Trade Ministry of Ukraine reported on its website on Wednesday.

“Net profit indicators grew in all sectors, apart from coal production and engineering,” the ministry said.

The ministry said that the key factor that increased the figure was the improvement of financial results of national joint-stock company Naftogaz Ukrainy thanks to a rise of the tariffs for households as part of the switch to the market prices of natural gas. This allowed the company to post UAH 200 million of profit in January-September 2015 compared to loss of UAH 60.2 billion a year ago.

National Nuclear Generating Company Energoatom showed the best pace in increasing profit – UAH 1.3 billion of profit compared to UAH 3.8 billion of loss a year ago.

Leaders in their sectors in the pace of profit growth was Ukrenergo (UAH 408 million of net profit compared to net loss of UAH 477 million), Turboatom (UAH 1.3 billion of net profit from UAH 800 million of net profit), Ukrainian Sea Port Authority (net profit grew from UAH 1.2 billion to UAH 3.5 billion), Agrarian Fund (net profit rose from UAH 466 million to UAH 706 million), and Odesa Port-Side Plant (net profit of UAH 205 million compared to net loss of UAH 243 million).

As of September 30, 2015, total net asset value of state-owned enterprises was UAH 926 billion, which is almost 45% up from a year ago.

Total debt liabilities grew by 26.7%, reaching UAH 145 billion. Total ratio between debt liabilities and equity capital of top 100 largest companies fell from 36% to 24%.

EBRD TO MAINTAIN INVESTMENT TO UKRAINE IN 2016 ON CONDITION TO SEE PROGRESS WITH REFORMS, SOLIDARITY OF POWER BRANCHES

KYIV. Feb 18 (Interfax-Ukraine) – The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) will continue actively investing into the Ukrainian economy on conditions that three branches of power work as one team, progress in reforms and political stability is achieved, EBRD Managing Director for Eastern Europe and the Caucasus Francis Malige has said.

In 2015, the EBRD reached EUR 1 billion of investment and the bank would try to have the same indicators this year, he told reporters on Wednesday.

Success will depend on the effective operation of all branches of power and reforms, otherwise it would be unlikely that the bank would operate actively in the country, he said.

The team of reformers in the government with desire of conducting reforms does not have enough tools to implement them, he said.

The fact that the government remains fuels confidence that the team aimed at reforms would get a chance of going on the way of these reforms that are being realized in tight cooperation with international financial institutions (IFIs), Malige said.

He added that success of EBRD’s investment in Ukraine in 2015 linked to the implemented reforms that allowed the bank to work under the planned programs both with public and private sectors. He pointed at reforms in the banking and energy sectors, especially the transformation of Naftogaz Ukrainy.

Agriculture (including logistics and retail) is an important sector for the Ukrainian economy, as well as the infrastructure sector. The bank plans to continue working in these sectors, he said.

Malige noted that operation of court and executive systems should be improved, so that investors were more confident that their money is protected.

According to the EBRD’s assessments as of late 2015, Ukraine’s GDP growth will be 2% in 2016.

Malige said that the forecast will be revised in early May, taking into account the situation in the country.

KYIV METRO ANNOUNCES TENDER FOR FEASIBILITY STUDY TO BUILD SUBWAY LINE TO TROYESCHYNA

KYIV. Feb 17 (Interfax-Ukraine) – Kyiv Metropoliten has announced a tender to purchase design work (the phase of a feasibility study) for the construction of the fourth Podilsko-Vyhurivska metro line from the Circular Road to the Vyhurivschyna-Troyeschyna residential area with an electric depot.

According to the press service of Kyiv City State Administration, proposals for the tender are accepted until March 14.

The estimated project cost is UAH 60.142 million.

According to the draft general plan of Kyiv, it is planned to build the Podilsko-Vyhurivska subway line with a length of 20.6 km with 16 stations and an electric depot.

Earlier Head of Kyiv Metropoliten Viktor Brahynsky said an interview with Interfax-Ukraine that one of the most important prospects for 2016 is the construction of the second exit at Vokzalna subway station, the preparation of an investment project on the fourth subway line to Troyeschyna to submit it to the Cabinet of Ministers for consideration.

U.S. ARGENTEM CREEK INTERESTED IN INVESTMENT IN ENERGY SECTOR OF UKRAINE

KYIV. Feb 17 (Interfax-Ukraine) – U.S. investment company Argentem Creek Partners and Energy Resources of Ukraine have signed an agreement on strategic partnership to implement joint investment activities in the energy sector of Ukraine, reads a press release from the Ukrainian company.

According to Argentem Creek Director for Investment Daniel Chapman, the signing of an agreement on cooperation with Energy Resources of Ukraine is the first step in the company’s strategy in the framework of implementing investment projects in Ukraine.

“We want to become part of the successful development of the country’s energy sector. We see a huge potential for investment in power generation, renewable energy and oil and gas production in Ukraine,” he said.

Argentem Creek is a company specializing in financing projects in the emerging markets. It is headquartered in New York and has offices in Minneapolis, London, Buenos Aires, and Singapore.

Argentem Creek Partners is one of the three structures, resulting from the division of Black River Asset Management investment company, part of Cargill Group.

GOVERNMENT TO MULL FULL SALE OF OSCHADBANK AND UKREXIMBANK BY LATE 2020

KYIV. Feb 17 (Interfax-Ukraine) – The strategy of reforming the state banking sector, developed by the government, foresees the possibility of a full privatization of strategic Oschadbank and Ukreximbank in the long term, while the decision on the amount of shares for sale and the terms of sale will be made by the Cabinet of Ministers by the end of 2020.

This is stated in the “Basis of strategic reform of the public banking sector,” approved by the government.

According to the document, posted by the Ministry of Finance on the official website, it is planned in the medium term (by mid-2018) to sell at least 20% of Oschadbank and Ukreximbank to a qualified investor or an international financial institution through a transparent tender.

“To this end, the supervisory councils of the strategic banks will be required in 2018 to select the preferred method of selling shares and agree it with the Ministry of Finance. The final decision on the sale of shares will be made by the Cabinet of Ministers no later than the first quarter of 2018,” reads the document.