Lithuanian MP Egidjius Vareikis: If we want peace in this region, Ukraine should be a Western-type state
The deputy of the Lithuanian Seimas and member of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe, an acclaimed political scientist and expert on international security, a fellow at Vilnius and Kaunas universities Egidjius Vareikis has told UNIAN, how he sees a UN peacekeeping mission in Donbas, how Russia could be forced to change its objectives, and why the economic component of the so-called "Marshall Plan" for Ukraine is just not enough.
Ukraine’s Trade Envoy: Our goal is to review the terms of our free trade with the EU
Trade Representative of Ukraine Nataliya Mikolska sat down with UNIAN to elaborate on the reasons for the growth of Ukrainian exports in 2017, the launch of more free trade areas, the main export trends toward Europe, and to tell us why Ukraine wants to review the terms of its free trade with the EU.
Week’s milestones. Capricious Rada, exhorting PM, and multi-faceted Themis
Ukrainian legislators worked in line with the letter of Rada’s regulations with the perseverance worthy of a much better application. With no efficient whips available, the prime minister tried to persuade lawmakers and exhort his fellow citizens with the help of a carrot image. Mikheil Saakashvili was fined for illegal border crossing. Ex-SBU chief Valentyn Nalyvaychenko tried on a role of a victim of political repression. The Ukrainian Themis appeared in all its glory.
Week’s balance: success of Ukrainian Eurobonds, scandal in Naftogaz, and hitch with pension reform
For the first time since the Revolution of Dignity Ukraine successfully borrowed $3 billion on the foreign market for 15 years, the Cabinet presented a draft budget 2018 in parliament which has by far failed to begin the final stage of the debate on pension reform, while the last remaining independent members of the Naftogaz supervisory board announced their intention to resign claiming that the Ukrainian government was “derailing” the gas holding’s reform - these are key economic news of the outgoing week.
Transit risks of Ukraine's "gas" scandal
Ukraine has come close to its main energy goal - to retain in full its gas transit volumes after the current contract with Russia’s Gazprom expires. The main task is to transfer the points of gas acceptance to the country’s eastern border. The European Commission has practically given the go-ahead to the idea, at the same time setting certain conditions, which fully comply with Ukraine’s obligations under the Ukraine-EU Association Agreement. But there is a possibility of disruption of transit plans as a result of the actions of certain Ukrainian officials.
Pensions, army, and debts: key priorities of Ukraine Budget-2018
The Cabinet of Ministers has submitted to the parliament the draft state budget-2018, expecting its approval by December. The experts analyzed the key parameters of the country's budget and reflected on whether the drafted scenario of the country's economic development for the next year is realistic.
Week’s milestones. YES forum and Saakashvili row
Viktor Pinchuk confirmed his skills of the builder of communication platforms. Petro Poroshenko tried to ease tensions with businesses amid latest raids by law enforcers. Volodymyr Groysman is concerned over the parliamentary majority. Mikheil Saakashvili is reaping the fruits of the "will of the people." Yulia Tymoshenko plays her traditional role.
Week’s balance: Budget-2018, IMF audit, and hryvnia losing shape
The Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine approved and submitted to the Verkhovna Rada a draft budget for 2018, Deputy Managing Director of the IMF David Lipton inspected how Ukraine fulfilled obligations under the program of cooperation with the Fund and appreciated the progress in the stabilization of the Ukrainian economy, while the hryvnia continued its downward trend - these are the main economic news of the outgoing week.
Sheikh Said Ismagilov: Terrorists could be of any religion. Like "Russian Orthodox Army" in Donbas... But no one has ever used the term "Orthodox terrorist"
Mufti of the Religious Administration of Muslims of Ukraine “Ummah” Sheikh Said Ismagilov sat down with UNIAN to speak about Ukrainian Muslims under the occupation, the differences between the Muslims in Western and Central Europe, the global trend of Islamophobia, the Kremlin’s anti-Muslim policy, and why Islam in Russia is controlled by the FSB security service.
Week’s milestones. Presidential solo, Saakashvili's return and struggle for reforms
Petro Poroshenko tried to outline the priorities of the state in the short term - before the start of the election campaign. Mikheil Saakashvili proved that the goal justifies all means, but nobody canceled the need for "Plan B". The government celebrated the adoption of the law "On Education" and is preparing for new battles around the proposed reforms.
Week’s balance: President's address, preparation for winter, and nervous hryvnia
Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko in his annual address to the parliament outlined the main tasks to achieve the country’s stable development, the government took up preparations for the heating season and assured that it would pass unhindered, while Naftogaz declared the need to attract European partners to the management of the gas transmission system - these are the main economic news of the outgoing week.
What Russian "peacekeepers" want
Russia’s hybrid aggression against Ukraine generates hybrid attempts on the part of the Kremlin to resolve this conflict. The whole world can already observe in Abkhazia, South Ossetia and Transnistria who “peacekeepers” are in Russian understanding. Does Ukraine need such "peacekeepers"? A rhetorical question, indeed...
Hryvnia’s troubled autumn
The interbank market has for the past several days been seeing an increased demand for foreign currency, pulling the hryvnia down. Expert opinions on how the national currency will survive traditional autumn anxiety and winter colds have divided.
Week’s milestones. Traveling president, prudent prime minister, and tense Donbas
Petro Poroshenko is trying to cover different parts of Ukraine with his working trips. Volodymyr Groysman has stocked up on some patience ahead of possible autumn shocks. The bill on the future de-occupation of Donbas remains closed to the public.
Week’s balance: Groysman sees "sabotage" in LPG market, announces legislative plans for autumn, while Akhmetov boosts control in energy sector
Prime Minister of Ukraine Volodymyr Groysman announced the government's plans for the autumn, while LPG prices in the motor fuel market started to ease down after the August peak, and competent authorities are instructed to probe into the “sabotage” with pricing. The American corporation announced its intention to pour $650 million into Ukraine's energy market, while the agrarians completed the harvesting of early grain crops. These are the main economic news of the outgoing week.
Akhtem Seitablaev: If each of us says: "I am Ukraine," everything will begin to change
In an interview with UNIAN, Crimean Tatar actor and film director Akhtem Seitablaev spoke about the need to talk about Crimea as often as possible, especially in the international arena, and explained what Crimea House he is currently heading is all about, also addressing the issue of what it’s like for Crimean residents to live under the occupation.
Week’s milestones. Festive metamorphoses, Parubiy’s announcement, and high profile traffic accidents
Independence Day Parade in Kyiv showed just how significantly the Ukrainian army has changed. A newly-installed TV tower in Bakhmutivka the Ukrainian government restored TV broadcasts across the areas of Luhansk region temporarily controlled by pro-Russian terrorists. Rada Speaker Andriy Parubiy vowed "autumn reforms" in Parliament. A road accident involving Petro Dyminsky and Nestor Shufrich, Jr. expectedly sparked public outcry.
Week’s balance: LPG prices soar, state sector mired in losses, while Firtash comes into spotlight, again
The National Bank of Ukraine this week continued to strengthen the hryvnia rate; the Ministry of Economic Development and Trade estimated the profits and losses of state companies for 2016; the prices of LPG set a new record; while Firtash's companies jumped into a public focus over the alleged supplies of electricity and raw materials to the occupied Crimea - these are this week’s main economic news.
Week’s milestones. Tymoshenko's slip, Shabunin's case, and security dialectics
Yulia Tymoshenko with her hasty Facebook comment complicated her entry into the new political season. Mikheil Saakashvili continues to show serious intentions to return to Ukraine. Vitaly Shabunin publicly tried on himself the role of "mind, dignity, and conscience" of all anti-graft activists. SBU revealed the criminal plot of the FSB against former ATO fighters, at the same time remaining impotent against the Russian Center for Science and Culture in Kyiv.
Week’s balance: NABU efforts yield success, hryvnia shows muscle, Cabinet to launch staffing revolution
The National Anti-Corruption Bureau reported on the results of corruption probes in the energy sector, the Ukrainian hryvnia continued to strengthen following GDP growth, while the Cabinet, assisted by the EU, announced a massive competition for some 900 government posts. These are the main economic news of the outgoing week.