How conflict between Cabinet and Naftogaz helps Russia tighten gas noose on Ukraine's neck
A long-lasting conflict between Volodymyr Groysman's government and Naftogaz has moved to a new stage of aggravation. Now it is spinning against the Cabinet's decision on Naftogaz restructuring. The spat is being fueled by the lack of funds for pumping gas into underground storage facilities in excess of the usual volume, which is necessary to remove the risk of Russia's halting gas transit via Ukraine from January 1, 2020.
Week's balance: Zelensky vows business liberalization, NBU cancels mandatory sale of forex proceeds, while state budget gets EUR 1 bln
President Volodymyr Zelensky promised Ukrainian business leaders to liberalize the economy and improve business climate, the National Bank decided on a historic step to abolish the mandatory sale by exporters of foreign exchange proceeds, the state budget was replenished by EUR 1 billion after a successful placement of foreign government bonds, while the statistics agency improved the outlook for GDP growth in the first quarter – these are main economic news of the outgoing week.
Week's balance: Ukraine issues bonds worth EUR 1 billion, inflation shows rise, while Constitutional Court alters status of energy regulator
Ukraine for the first time in fifteen years issued euro-denominated bonds, the State Statistics Service reported accelerating inflation, the Cabinet approved Ukrzaliznytsia's development strategy until 2023, and the Constitutional Court caused a storm with its decision to recognize unconstitutional a number of provisions of the law on the energy regulator – these are economic news of the past week.
Debt pressure: borrowing again to pay back previous "loans"
The Ministry of Finance is going to borrow in the foreign market, again. They have announced the next issue of Eurobonds. No specifics have been revealed yet about its parameters. Details are being discussed with Ukraine's Western partners. But the main thing is that our country will get into more debts to settle on the previous ones worth billions.
Gas conflict between Cabinet and Naftogaz: Will Ukrainians have heat in their homes this winter?
Another conflict has erupted between the Cabinet and Naftogaz. This time it broke out against the background of the purchase of gas for the passage of the future heating season, taking into account the risk of a halt to the transit of Russian gas from January 1, 2020. Naftogaz said it had no money for these purposes. In turn, the government believes that the issue of the shortage of funds should be resolved by Naftogaz's "creative" management, which over the past three years has increased tenfold the expenditures on the company's management.
Week's balance: Cabinet "freezes" electricity tariffs for households, obliges Naftogaz to reduce gas prices, while National Bank keeps key rate unchanged
The government has passed a resolution that would retain electricity prices for the households at their current level until the end of 2020, and obliged Naftogaz to reduce by UAH 800–900 the cost of natural gas, while the National Bank ruled to keep the key policy rate unchanged to prevent inflation risks. These are this week's major economic developments in Ukraine.
"Gas" plans: What will Ukraine do if Russia stops transit
Naftogaz has planned to pump additional gas volumes into underground storage facilities by the heating season, 3 billion cubic meters more than usual. This will be a kind of insurance if Gazprom from January 1, 2020, blocks the transit through our territory. But are there enough stocks and how can we pay for them?
Week's balance: New front against Gazprom, forex easing, and new tax service chief
Naftogaz of Ukraine has opened a new front in its battle against Russian Gazprom, the National Bank raised the bar for the withdrawal of dividends by foreign investors, while the Cabinet of Ministers appointed a new head of the Tax Service – these are the main economic news of the outgoing week.
Not just grains: Ukrainian food products conquering world markets
Last year, Ukrainian producers exported agrarian products worth a record $19 billion. And although the lion's share of the supply remains raw export, domestic ready-made food products can already be found on the shelves of foreign retail chains. But for Ukraine to obtain the prestigious status of a "global supermarket," farmers and the government still have a lot of work to do.
Aircraft designer Vadim Lukashevich: We urgently need to stop using Superjet and figure out what happened...
Hard landing at the Sheremetyevo airport of the newest Sukhoi Superjet aircraft resulted in the death of 41 people on board. This is not the first accident with a Russian plane that has just recently been put into operation. Whether traveling on these aircraft are the same as playing "Russian roulette" is what UNIAN sat down to discuss with the former designer of the Sukhoi Design Office, which created the "Superjet".
Week's balance: Lower gas tariffs, punishment for utility debtors, and international defense cooperation
Naftogaz of Ukraine, at the government insistence, reduced by 3.5% gas tariffs for households; the new law on housing and utility services tightened sanctions against those failing to pay utility bills; while the country's defense industry boasted of success reached in international cooperation – these are the main economic news of the outgoing week.
To cooperate or to dissolve: Are snap parliamentary elections possible in Ukraine
Long before the official proclamation of the results of presidential elections, the Verkhovna Rada began talking about its possible dissolution by the new head of state. Will Volodymyr Zelensky be able to sack people's deputies ahead of schedule, and is it an advantageous step for him today?
Week's balance: Businesses voice wishes to Zelensky, Statistics Service reports increase in industrial output, and National Bank lowers key rate
President-elect Volodymyr Zelensky through his advisors told about his vision of economic policy; businesses and investors voiced their expectations from the new head of state; Deputy Finance Minister Serhiy Verlanov won the competition for the position of head of the Tax Service; the State Statistics Service reported growth in industrial output n in March; while the NBU, for the first time in the last two years, lowered its key rate and improved a number of macroeconomic forecasts – these are the main economic developments of the outgoing week.
Language law: In anticipation of shake-up in print media market
The law on the state language, among other things, directly affects media operations. The new legislation's norms on the Ukrainian language in print media deserve special attention. UNIAN contacted the editors of several Russian-language publications in Ukraine to find out their opinion on and readiness for innovations.
Elections, IMF: What to expect from Ukrainian hryvnia
The Ukrainian hryvnia responded to the completion of the presidential election by slightly sliding down. But there is one more political battle ahead – parliamentary elections. In addition, due to a number of reasons, continued cooperation with the main creditor - the International Monetary Fund – could become an issue. UNIAN figured out what to expect from the national currency this year.
President-elect Volodymyr Zelensky: Face to face with old economic problems
Ukrainians have chosen their new president, the 41-year-old showman and actor Volodymyr Zelensky. According to the Constitution, the head of state does not directly oversee economic processes, but his policies should be in tune with the steps of the executive and legislative branches to address key economic problems. After polling a number of experts, UNIAN made an outline of the economic agenda of the new president.
Week's balance: Last warning to Kobolyev, victory of Ukrnafta and re-nationalization of PrivatBank
Prime Minister Volodymyr Groysman threatened with dismissing CEO Naftogaz, Andriy Kobolyev, if the company fails to reduce gas prices for the households before April 24; Ukrnafta won a court dispute with Russia to recover compensation for assets in the occupied Crimea; and the District Administrative Court of Kyiv recognized the illegal decision to nationalize PrivatBank – these are the main economic news of the last week.
Week's balance: Slower inflation, IMF forecast, and new sanctions against Russia
The State Statistics Service reported on a slower pace of inflation, Ukraine's key creditor, the International Monetary Fund, released its forecast of the country's economy prospects, while the government introduced another set of sanctions against the aggressor state, Russia – these are the main economic news of the outgoing week.
"Transit" loss in WTO: Is revenge possible?
Ukraine lost a “transit” dispute with Russia within the World Trade Organization. The WTO rejected the claims of our country, although the actions of the Kremlin practically deprived Ukraine of direct trade links with Central Asia. The fiasco in trade disputes is the third in a row for us. Why is this happening and is it possible to fix the situation?
Week's balance: markets calm following first round of elections, gas tariffs down, promises voiced of new forex easing
As the country's financial markets retained their calm following the first round of presidential elections experts expect this trend to prevail with any outcome of the runoff; the Cabinet of Ministers instructed Naftogaz to reduce the gas price for the households, while the National Bank promised another wave of forex liberalization - these are the main economic developments of the outgoing week.