Zelensky confirms NBU independence with EBRD president, says Ukraine ready to fulfill conditions for second IMF, WB tranches
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky in a telephone conversation with EBRD leaders has said Ukraine consistently maintains cooperation with international partners, in particular with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the World Bank, and the government is working to fulfill the conditions for receiving the second tranche of the IMF and EU loan.
"The president also said that Ukraine has successfully returned to the external capital market – the Finance Ministry has raised $2 billion, which demonstrates investor confidence in our country," the press service of the head of state said on Friday.
Zelensky assured his interlocutors that with the change of the head of the National Bank of Ukraine, to which Kyrylo Shevchenko was recently appointed, central bank policy will remain as effective as it was before.
"I want to assure you that the NBU will remain an independent institution in the future and will pursue a balanced monetary policy," the president said.
Zelensky expressed hope that the EBRD will continue to cooperate with Ukraine in financing infrastructure projects.
"The development of roads, railway infrastructure and river transport will continue. The Ministry of Infrastructure and Ukravtodor are working to sign an agreement for EUR 450 million by the end of the year, which will allow starting the reconstruction of roads next year," the president said.
Zelensky also spoke about the preparations for the privatization of large state-owned companies and invited the EBRD to join this process. He said that the first auction for the privatization of the Dnipro Hotel, previously state-owned, was held transparently and successfully, and sold for more than UAH 1.1 billion.
"We will actively move in this direction, and we also count on the support of the EBRD," he said.
Zelensky noted that last year the EBRD's portfolio of projects in Ukraine amounted to EUR 1.1 billion.
The head of state expressed hope for an even more dynamic build-up of cooperation in 2020.
According to him, the global COVID-19 pandemic raises the issue of financing and supporting the liquidity of public and private sector companies even more acutely. In addition, there is a need to continue investing in infrastructure development in Ukraine, he said.
EBRD Acting President Jurgen Rigterink noted that the bank is ready to provide Ukraine with even more support during the crisis, and this year has invested more than EUR 300 million in Ukraine.
Rigterink noted the reforms of corporate governance of state-owned enterprises and banks in Ukraine and the provision of transparency in the procedures for appointing members of supervisory boards.
Rigterink welcomed important reforms in Ukraine, noting, in particular, the fight against corruption, the adoption of laws on concession, land market, privatization, banking law, as well as the appointment of a central bank chief.
He noted the successful placement of eurobonds by Ukraine, the signing of a new loan agreement with the European Union and continued cooperation with the IMF.