Business news from Ukraine

VODAFONE-UKRAINE TO RAISE $500 MLN OF EXTERNAL FINANCING FOR DEVELOPMENT

The shareholders of PrJSC VF Ukraine (provides mobile services under the Vodafone-Ukraine brand) on January 20 decided to provide prior consent to raising funds of up to $1 billion, but the company plans to gradually raise up to $500 million from external sources for the implementation of the development strategy, the operator’s press service has told Interfax-Ukraine.
“At the moment, the company is considering its development strategy. In the near future, we are considering options for phased attraction of external financing in the range of $500 million,” Viktoria Ruban, the head of the public relations department of Vodafone-Ukraine, said.
According to her, attracting external financing on favorable terms is consistent with the company’s development strategy and is a common practice in business.
According to a company report in the information disclosure system of the National Commission for Securities and the Stock Market, the company was allowed to sign loan agreements, agreements on commissions, orders from other transactions related to raising funds. The limit amount of such transactions is $1 billion (or UAH 24.253 billion at the NBU rate as of January 20, 2020).
The value of the company’s assets as of 2018 stood at UAH 21.479 billion.
The ratio of the marginal aggregate of transaction value to the value of the issuer’s assets according to the latest annual financial statements is 112.91%.

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FARMAK PHARMACEUTICAL COMPANY TO INVEST UAH 1.2 BLN IN DEVELOPMENT

Farmak pharmaceutical company (Kyiv) plans to invest UAH 1.2 billion in production development in 2020, which is 30% more than last year, and also increase the number of staff. According to the company’s press service, with reference to executive director of Farmak Volodymyr Kostiuk, in 2019 investments for these purposes amounted to UAH 900 million.
“In 2019, we invested about UAH 900 million in the development of production, in 2020 we plan to invest UAH 1.2 billion. The expansion of production leads to an increase in the number of personnel,” he said.
According to Kostiuk, the issue of personnel remains acute for the company.
“We create the most comfortable working conditions for specialists and provide competitive wages. Today we compete with European companies in terms of wages in relation to the average check in a particular country. In 2019, wages at Farmak increased by 14%,” he said.
The top manager also said that in 2019 Farmak expanded its cold, allergological, neurological, gastroenterological product portfolios and is working on complex drugs that it plans to bring to the market in 10-15 years.
The main areas remain cold, endocrinological, gastroenterological, cardiological, neurological portfolios.

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EU LAUNCHES PROJECT TO SUPPORT PUBLIC HEALTH SYSTEM DEVELOPMENT

The European Union has launched a project entitled “Support to Ukraine for Developing a Modern Public Health System” on December 12, the Public Health Center (PHC) reported. The project will help the government to implement public health reform in line with its obligations under the EU-Ukraine Association Agreement, reads the statement on the website of the PHC.
The experts will consult the Health Ministry of Ukraine, the PHC and the regional public health centers, help to draw up laws and regulations, analyze and implement the EU practices.
According to the statement, the project is aimed at streamlining the public health system in Ukraine with the EU practices, creating a sustainable epidemiology surveillance system to control contagious and non-contagious diseases and introducing the International Health Regulations to prevent, protect against, control and provide a public health response to the international spread of disease.
In addition, the project will provide support for reform of the blood donation service in Ukraine via the development of a modern blood safety system in line with the EU standards. The project will also help to improve the quality control system, create donor registers and unified standards for blood transfusion, promote voluntary blood donation and establish an independent competent agency in the sphere of blood safety.
The EU project “Support to Ukraine for Developing a Modern Public Health System” will be implemented from 2019 until 2022 by the GFA Consulting Group GmbH (GFA) in consortium with the National Institute for Health and Welfare, Finland (THL). The budget of the project is EUR 3 million.

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INSTITUTE FOR EDUCATION DEVELOPMENT OPENS IN UKRAINE

The Education and Science Ministry of Ukraine has announced the opening of the Ukrainian Institute for Education Development which will be in charge of the implementation of the New Ukrainian School Project. “The Ukrainian Institute for Education Development has opened. This agency will replace the Institute for Education Content Modernization to implement the New Ukrainian School Project and later all of the latter institution’s functions will be passed to it,” the ministry said.
Education and Science Minister Hanna Novosad noted that the Institute for Education Content Modernization was not always effective and successful during the implementation of the New Ukrainian School Project.
Vadym Karandiy has been appointed as Head of the new Ukrainian Institute for Education Development.
He headed that Ukrainian Center for Education Quality Assessment from 2015 until 2019, according to the ministry’s press service.
The ministry also said that the transformation of the old institution will be held until 2021.
The priority tasks of the Ukrainian Institute for Education Development will be coordination of the introduction of new education standards for students of the 3rd and 4th grades, assessment of quality of pre-school education with the help if the international tool ECERS, participation in the development of the national standards for secondary education and a typical secondary education program, support for professional development and growth of teachers, development of effective procedures for assessment of study books and piloting them during the selection of 4th grade students.

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EBRD WILL ISSUE EXTRA EUR 200 MLN FOR DEVELOPMENT OF RENEWABLE ENERGY IN UKRAINE

The Board of Directors of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) has approved the provision of additional financing in the amount of EUR 200 million for the development of renewable energy sources in Ukraine. The EBRD said it intends to issue new funds to finance private renewable energy projects under the current system of stimulating “green” tariffs. The planned replenishment will allow the bank to build on the success of USELF-III and maintain momentum in the transition from the existing mechanism of preferential tariffs to a support system based on competitive auctions.
The bank noted that the third program of financing renewable energy development approved in July 2018 in the amount of EUR 250 million (Ukraine Sustainable Energy Lending Facility, USELF-III) will be fully implemented by the end of 2019.
As reported, the EBRD under the USELF program has been supporting the development of renewable energy in Ukraine since 2009. The program is aimed at assisting the state in achieving by 2020 the share of “green” generation in the country’s total energy consumption at 11% (including a 6% share of large hydropower plants).

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PRESIDENT OF UKRAINE CALLS ON INTERNATIONAL PARTNERS TO INVEST IN DEVELOPMENT OF SMALL SETTLEMENTS IN UKRAINE

President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky calls on international partners to invest in the development of small towns in the country and emphasizes that the beginning of such a process has been launched in Mariupol.
“Our idea is to start the development from Mariupol. That is why the investment forum is taking place here, in eastern Ukraine. A city once liberated can become truly European,” the president said at a meeting with Vice President of the International Finance Corporation Georgina Baker, World Bank Country Director for Belarus, Moldova and Ukraine Satu Kahkonen and Regional Manager of the International Finance Corporation in Ukraine, Belarus and Moldova Jason Pellmar as part of the RE: THINK. Invest in Ukraine Forum in Mariupol, the presidential press service said.
He thanked the World Bank and the International Finance Corporation for their assistance with reform implementation. “You have seen how many bills have already been adopted. We are now starting to implement them,” the president said.
In addition, the head of state thanked the International Finance Corporation for the implementation of the transport project in Mariupol. He expressed hope that similar projects would appear in other cities of Ukraine.
Zelensky said he was ready to protect the investments and called for investing in the development of small settlements. “In particular, we need investments to build new schools, hospitals, roads and bridges,” the president said.

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