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Ukraine looking to support its businesses ahead of joining FTA with EU

Interfax, Ukraine

Ukraine looking to support its businesses ahead of joining FTA with EU

11 May 2015

The Ukrainian Ministry of Economic Development and Trade believes that not all Ukrainian companies are ready to switch to new working conditions once the economic part of the European Union-Ukraine association agreement comes into effect, and is looking for ways to support business.

"We are hoping for the help from our European partners," Economic Development and Trade Minister Aivaras Abromavicius told Interfax-Ukraine on Sunday.

Already there have been financial proposals, including of educational programs, the minister said.

"One example is the U.S. fund Western NIS, where the finance minister once worked, which allocated $30 million in grants for four areas, one of which is precisely export promotion that includes workshops, awareness campaigns, education programs and so on," Abromavicius said.

The ministry is also planning to start training public officials and executives at state-run companies.

"We will have a program for them to be trained at U.S. universities and for Western specialists to come to our country to teach them things like corporate governance," Abromavicius said.

Talks are already underway with the Ky i v School of Economics and the INSEAD business school over workshops for heads of state-run companies, he said.

The minister said he was convinced that a free trade area with the EU should be a positive factor for Ukrainian economy.

"There are real figures from Moldova and Georgia whose exports rose by 20% in the first quarter after the agreement came into effect," Abromavicius said.