Business news from Ukraine

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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EUROPEAN BANKS INTERESTED IN PROVIDING $250-300 MLN OF DEBT TO IMPLEMENT IRON ORE PROJECT IN UKRAINE

Canada’s Black Iron, implementing the investment project to create a new iron ore production facility in Kryvy Rih (Dnipropetrovsk region), has said that it received expressions of interest from European banks and export credit agencies to provide $250 to $300 million of debt.
The company said in a press release that Black Iron management continue to make sound progress arranging the financing for Shymanivske project construction.
Construction of phase one to produce four million tonnes per year of 68% iron content pellet feed is estimated to cost $436 million, as further detailed in Black Iron’s most recent Preliminary Economic Assessment. As is typical for financing the development of mining projects, based on discussions with potential investors and financiers, the company estimates that some $175 million (40%) will be equity and the balance around $261 million (60%) financed as debt, not including financing charges and working capital.
Black Iron CEO Matt Simpson said that strong interest from well known, highly regarded, providers of debt financing for project construction is seen.
“The indicative interest rates, grace period prior to starting repayment and loan duration in the expressions of interest received by the Company are very competitive. The recent announcement of the MOU between the Company and Ukraine’s government to transfer a critical parcel of land to the Company is an important milestone that both anchor offtake and debt investors have been waiting to see. The Company is currently negotiating binding terms for the land transfer, including the compensation amount, and expect this to conclude following a binding product sale (i.e. offtake) agreement as a portion of the funds invested by the offtake company will be used to cover the land transfer costs. Now that an MOU on land transfer has been reached, we look forward to commercial negotiations for project construction financing being accelerated,” he said.
Majority of the required equity for project construction is anticipated to come from offtake by a large trading company and/or steel mill that is interested to purchase Black Iron’s pellet feed on a long-term contract at a slight discount to market price in exchange for making both a prepayment and acquiring ownership in the Shymanivske project. Several multi-billion companies, including Glencore, as previously announced, are currently conducting due diligence to consider such an investment.
Additionally, there are two Asia based construction companies that have conducted site visits and expressed serious interest to invest up to $50 million of equity in kind in exchange for being awarded the construction contract.
From a sequence standpoint, discussions are being held simultaneously with equity and debt investors as both are ultimately required to fund project construction. It is likely the anchor equity and offtake investor will be announced first followed by completion of an updated feasibility study and environmental impact assessment upon which the debt financing can be secured to allow for construction start around the end of next year, the company said.

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UFUTURE AND BOOKCHEF LAUNCH JOINT PROJECT #BESTREAD

UFuture and BookСhef launch a joint publishing project aimed at developing of entrepreneurship in Ukraine. The goal of the partnership is to consolidate entrepreneurial expertise and successful publishing experience. This will allow to select literature according to the needs of Ukrainian business, to optimize translation, publishing, and distribution.
Books on a wide range of topics that will contribute to the development of entrepreneurial competencies, in particular, leadership and management, will be published. These books will provide the latest knowledge on various aspects of entrepreneurship, reveal case studies, stories of companies and biographies of their founders, will encourage for entrepreneurship and enhance its prestige.
“To be successful and competitive in business, to receive investments, to find reliable partners, Ukrainian entrepreneurs need to constantly obtain new knowledge. This is why #bestread will continue the list of our impact investment projects supporting small and medium entrepreneurship in Ukraine,” Vasyl Khmelnytsky, Founder of UFuture, said.
“BookChef is actively developing the non-fiction direction. We implement a large joint project with the MIM Business School where we’ve published bestsellers by Ichak Adizes, Yuval Noah Harari, success stories of companies and products. In 2019, we published the super bestseller, “Big Money. The Principles of the First,” where famous Ukrainian businessmen shared their experience,” Olexander Kirpichov, CEO of BookChef, emphasized.
“#bestread is about the books that are worth the time of entrepreneurs, the most valuable resource of modern business. We are pleased to join the collaboration with UFuture and synchronize with other business initiatives of the company,” Vadym Saveliev, Project Manager of #bestread, said.
Soon, the partners will announce the publishing plans and start working on the first books. During 2015-2019 years, Vasyl Khmelnytsky’s K.Fund has released non-fiction books as part of K.Fund Books project.
ADDITIONAL INFORMATION
UFuture is a holding company of Ukrainian entrepreneur Vasyl Khmelnytsky that integrates his business and impact-investment projects. The company has a diversified portfolio of assets in the fields of real estate, infrastructure, industry, renewable energy, pharmaceuticals, and IT. Currently, UFuture’s assets are estimated at $550 million, and the total capitalization of the businesses it invested in is more than $1 billion. UFuture is a majority shareholder in UDP development company (specializing in large infrastructure projects), Kyiv Sikorsky International Airport (the second international airport in Ukraine by passenger traffic), national operator of outdoor advertising RTM-Ukraine, and a group of IT companies and an ecosystem of tech solutions ITernal. UFuture is a strategic investor in the pharmaceutical company Biopharma and UDP Renewables, renewable energy investment and development company. UFuture is also developing new business projects including UNIT.City innovation parks in Kyiv and Kharkiv, LvivTech.City in Lviv; Bila Tserkva industrial park and a manufacturer of modern electrotechnical systems, Plank Electrotechnic. UFuture supports social projects in the fields of education and economics, including the Kyiv International Economic Forum (KIEF), Lean Institute Ukraine, UNIT School of Business, UNIT Factory innovative IT-schools in Kyiv and Kharkiv, Secondary education institution Novopecherska School, the all-Ukrainian online platform iLearn and others.
BookChef is a publisher of bestsellers by Yuval Noah Harari, Michelle Obama, Cameron Diaz, Bill Clinton, Ichak Adizes, Liu Cixin, and other world-renowned authors. In 3 years, an ambitious startup has grown into a publishing house with a portfolio of 200+ books and a turnover of tens of millions of hryvnias. The publisher develops joint projects with UFuture, the MIM Business School, Oschadbank, Synevo international network of laboratories, and more. It selects books from world charts, recognized bestsellers, and popular novelties by promising authors. We find texts that will be useful for readers, that can be read and re-read many times, thought-provoking and helping to see things at an unusual angle. BookChef — books that shape a personality.

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LAW FIRM REVEALING INFORMATION LAUNCHES PROJECT FOR ACCIDENT VICTIMS IN UKRAINE

The Revealing Information (RI) law firm and LLC DTP Expert RI Group (LLC Accident Expert RI Group) have launched a project to protect motorists in accidents, and plan to make it available throughout Ukraine, the law firm said in a press release.
DTP Expert RI Group Partner Oleksandr Keer said the project is needed because of “the increasing number of cases where incorrectly filed documents about the accidents do not let objectively determine who caused them and, therefore, who should seek compensation for damages suffered in court or insurance companies.”
Practice shows that the final result on recovering property and health damage depends on how administrative offense protocols and traffic accidents reports have been drawn up at the scene of an accident. They will later be sent to the court or an insurance company, he said.
Keer also stressed that transport companies, including those in municipal ownership, can also participate in the project along with the owners of personal vehicles.
“We are faced with the fact that no one represents the interests of utility carriers in the event of an accident. The carriers are often found guilty of accidents because the second participant in the incident hires a lawyer and uses professional legal assistance. As a result, utility companies suffer significant damages,” he said.
Keer says independent technical examinations carried out after accidents often help to objectively establish the causes.
“The accuracy of the paperwork influences the final decision of the investigator, the court and the insurance company,” he said.
Keer added that the project for the protection of accident victims provides for settlement by negotiation between parties to the accident, thus avoiding lengthy consideration of the case.
He said that in European countries, representatives of law firms engaged in protecting accident victims travel to the scene of accidents. The police in such cases are not involved, he said, adding there is no such practice in Ukraine.
Keer said the project is already working in 22 regions of Ukraine. Its offices are located in regional centers, while they have the resources for rapid response and departure to the scene.
As reported, according to the National Police of Ukraine the number of registered accidents from January to April 2019 was 47,400, which was 4.2% more than in during the same period in 2018.
According to the Motor (Transport) Insurance Bureau of Ukraine, from January to March 2019 it took an average of 76 days to settle insurance claims for damage caused to property declared for compulsory insurance of civil liability of vehicle owners (from the time of the accident to the last payment).
Insurance companies over the period increased the amount of insurance premiums collected under agreements on compulsory insurance of vehicle owners’ civil liability (OSAGO) by 12.3% compared to the same period of 2018, to UAH 2.023 billion, while insurance claim payments grew by 13%, to UAH 1.022 billion. The number of OSAGO contracts, meanwhile, increased by 3.3%, to 3.364 million.
Revealing Information is an all-Ukrainian legal association of a wide range of experts providing services for the protection of the rights of victims from any types of offenses, fraud and banditry. Services of the association include legal support of business, analytical information support and investigative activities, measures to counter the illegal seizure of property, support for clients in criminal, economic and civil disputes, etc.

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ZE!TEAM LAUNCHES LIFT PROJECT TO ATTRACT NEW SPECIALISTS, INNOVATIVE IDEAS

The team of newly elected President Volodymyr Zelensky (Ze!Team) has launched the LIFT project, which is intended to become a social elevator and unite qualified specialists and innovations, ensure changes in the country and its comprehensive socio-economic and cultural development.
“This is a platform that will finally give impetus to changes in the country: new people for state and social projects, innovative ideas and developments that will form the state as a modern service for every citizen of Ukraine,” the project initiators note.
Anyone can join the project. “We have combined the best recruiting companies and specialists who will closely monitor the selection process,” Ze!Team said.
LIFT, as an innovative platform, will help people find jobs, become specialists and work on changes in the country. Authors of the project say it will solve difficult issues or be useful for the country, bringing positive changes at the state level.
A beta version of LIFT project: https://lift.net.ua/ was launched on Tuesday, May 28.
On May 23, Zelensky, during his speech at the Ukrainian forum of Internet figures, iForum announced the launch of this project in the near future. He said it would allow anyone to offer their ideas as part of the process of digitalization of the state, dubbed “creating a state in a smartphone,” announced during his election campaign.

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RADA RATIFIES AGREEMENT WITH FRANCE ON PROVISION OF EUR 64 MLN LOAN FOR DRINKING WATER PROJECT IN MARIUPOL

The Verkhovna Rada has ratified an agreement between the governments of Ukraine and France regarding the official support of a project on supply of drinking water to the city of Mariupol (Donetsk region). An Interfax-Ukraine correspondent has reported that a total of 258 lawmakers backed the agreement. According to the Framework Agreement, the French side provides Ukraine with a loan in an amount not exceeding EUR 64 million for the project on supply of drinking water to Mariupol.
The agreement also provides for the development of a master plan for improving the water supply and drainage system of Mariupol until 2040.
According to an explanatory note to the bill on ratification, the project will include the construction and launch of modern filtering stations in Mariupol, as well as the modernization of the existing centralized water supply pipelines and drainage system to reduce the consumption of drinking water and discharge of sewage into the environment.

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