The French government has allocated technical assistance to the Ukrainian state concern Ukroboronprom in the amount of about EUR 900,000 Aivaras Abromavičius, director general of the state concern, has said.
“This is a sign of confidence in Ukraine, it is a sign of confidence in the changes that are taking place now in the Ukroboronprom concern … This is an amount close to EUR 900,000, one of the largest amounts that the French government has allocated to Ukraine,” he said at a briefing in Kyiv on Wednesday.
According to Abromavičius, this assistance will be used to fight corruption and raise corporate governance standards.
“France’s technical assistance will be directed in two main areas. This is, firstly, the anti-corruption area, and secondly, the improvement of corporate governance standards. In the area of anti-corruption policy, we plan to carry out a comprehensive criminalistics, so-called forensic, audit on some processes, contracts, which, unfortunately, the financial audit does not have the opportunity to reach,” he said.
He said that the forensic audit reveals hidden schemes and frauds that look like legitimate transactions, but are actually fraudulent, and there have been a lot historically in the concern.
Abromavičius stressed that the allocated funds would help build the best corporate governance standards in Ukroboronprom, according to Western standards.
“Within the project, we plan to develop new principles of corporate governance both at enterprises and at the concern itself. This is a large-scale project that requires time, which requires not only our efforts, but, as I said, the support of international partners. Branches of government will be involved, as well as Ukroboronprom partners themselves,” he added.
Abromavičius said that the French Embassy in Ukraine would choose a consultant company from the Big Four, and it will help find the best model for organizing a business.
“That is, we are starting to build a modern company,” he stressed.
According to Abromavičius, the forensic audit process should take four months.
“But, unfortunately, this information will be more for the leadership of the country, for the leadership of Ukroboronprom and for law enforcement agencies,” he said.
Head of Luhansk Regional State Administration Serhiy Haidai has met with Ambassador of France to Ukraine Etienne de Ponsen in Kyiv to discuss financing opportunities for the railway communication in Luhansk region.
“The meeting with the ambassador extraordinary and plenipotentiary of France to Ukraine had good results for our region. We agreed on several issues and our French partners will provide financing for them. The amount of investment is estimated at more than EUR 100 million,” the press service of Luhansk Regional State Administration quoted Haidai as saying on Wednesday.
The funds will be spent on the construction of the railway communication to connect the Lantrativka – Kondrashivska-Nova section with the national railway system.
In addition, the sides agreed on the electrification of the railway network in the region and on the implementation of a project on cleaning the water supply system.
“The dialogue with Head of Luhansk Regional State Administration Serhiy Haidai regarding the priorities of the region’s economic development was very productive,” the ambassador said.
Ukraine and France have signed an intergovernmental agreement on the manufacture and technical maintenance of a batch of patrol boats, Ukrainian Interior Minister Arsen Avakov said.
“On behalf of the Ukrainian government the agreement was signed with French Interior Minister Christophe Castaner (EUR 136.5 million) on the production and technical maintenance of 20 patrol boats. Five of them and all RIB-boats [rigid inflatable boats] will be built in Ukraine. We thanked France for the support in building up the maritime security and protection system,” Avakov wrote on Twitter.
France’s OCEA will manufacture the 32-meter-long patrol boats.
“Every fourth boat will be produced in Ukraine. We will thus protect the basins of our seas and owing to the production localization in Ukraine – provisionally, this will be one of the Mykolaiv-based plants – we will be able to restart the manufacture of boats with aluminum hulls. We hope that following this deal we will produce boats at the Mykolaiv plant on a permanent basis,” the press center of the Ukrainian State Border Service quoted the minister as saying.
The new Ambassador of France to Ukraine, Etienne de Poncins, has arrived in Kyiv. “I’ve safely arrived in Kyiv. My mission as the head of the French Embassy in Ukraine may begin,” the diplomat wrote on Twitter.
Etienne de Poncins was appointed Ambassador of France to Ukraine on July 24. Prior to that, he worked as an inspector of the French Foreign Ministry, and in the European External Action Service, and was also the French ambassador to Kenya and Bulgaria.
The previous Ambassador of France to Ukraine, Isabelle Dumont, completed her work in Ukraine on July 27.
PJSC Energomashspetsstal (EMSS, Donetsk region) will produce rolls for a hot-rolling mill of ArcelorMittal Fos-sur-Mer (France) in 2020, an enterprise said in its press release.
The rolls, with a total weight of 105 tonnes meant for production of a steel sheet from two to ten millimeters thick, will be offloaded to the customer in the second quarter of 2020 under the conditions of the agreement signed in July 2019.
Russia’s Atomenergomash of Rosatom Corporation is an owner of the EMSS.
It is the largest Ukrainian producer of special cast and forged products for individual and small-scale production for metallurgy, shipbuilding, energy (wind, steam, hydro, nuclear) and general engineering.
Fos-sur-mer is the second ArcelorMittal steel mill in France that is a part of ArcelorMittal Méditerranée steel construction producer.
ArcelorMittal and Energomashspetsstal have been cooperating since 2011.
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky will pay an official visit to France on June 17 and to Germany on June 18, the Presidential Administration has reported.
“The program of the visits envisages meetings of the head of state with the leadership of France and Germany, the heads of parliaments, as well as with leading French and German business representatives,” the administration said on its Facebook page on Thursday.