OPINION

American Chamber of Commerce in Ukraine: Statement on 2019 Presidential Elections

Ukraine’s international business community look forward to working with President Zelenskiy to create a better investment climate and support Ukrainian economic growth

American Chamber of Commerce in Ukraine: Statement on 2019 Presidential Elections
About the author: Andy Hunder is President of the American Chamber of Commerce in Ukraine and Treasurer of AmChams in Europe
Andy Hunder
Saturday, 18 May 2019 18:37

On behalf of the Board of Directors of the American Chamber of Commerce in Ukraine, we congratulate President-elect Volodymyr Zelenskiy on his election victory. We look forward to working together to further improve the business and investment environment in Ukraine and support reforms aimed at achieving continued macroeconomic stability, long-term sustainable growth and increased Foreign Direct Investment (FDI).

We would like to thank President Petro Poroshenko for serving through very challenging years in Ukraine, for providing business with a voice at the table through the National Reform Council and National Investment Council, for continuous open dialogue with the business community, for ensuring fair and free elections, and for committing to a smooth transition of power. Many reforms were introduced during the past five years that have stabilized Ukraine’s economy and restarted growth.

Business expects the President-elect and his team to build on the foundations already achieved. These include strong cooperation with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and Ukraine’s bilateral partners, an independent central bank and macroeconomic stability, while focusing on high-priority reforms that require action including guaranteed rule of law for all, fair competition, a level playing field and the eradication of corruption.

The single most powerful tool each one of us has is our voice and our vote. Since 1992, the American Chamber of Commerce has been delivering the voice of business in Ukraine at the highest level, pushing forward a pro-growth agenda. The Chamber has been representing and supporting member companies – the largest investors, taxpayers and reliable employers, which make significant contributions to the state budget and create jobs.

Business wants predictability. The business community wants to see Ukraine secure, democratic and prosperous. Ukraine must not step back and must continue to advance its reform process at an even more rapid pace continuing Euro-Atlantic integration.

Looking ahead to the Zelenskiy presidency, the key priorities for the members of the American Chamber of Commerce in Ukraine are the following:

1. Real and effective judicial reform, rule of law, fair justice, transparent operations and selection of judges of all levels, including launching a High Anti-Corruption Court in the nearest term.

2. Ensure macroeconomic stability, an independent central bank and continued cooperation with the IMF to speed up Ukraine’s economic growth.

3. Guarantee a fair, equal, predictable and transparent tax policy, establish level playing fields and fair competition by decreasing the shadow economy.

4. Secure investment and property rights, including proper IPR enforcement and launching land reform.

5. Ensure export promotion and improve trade facilitation, including implementation of Authorized Economic Operators Institute and further improvement of Single Window for import-export operations.

6. Develop vital infrastructure through the involvement of the private sector to foster European integration, to attract investments and promote growth.

7. Reform the state-owned enterprise sector and state-owned banks, and launch transparent privatization.

8. Reduce outflow of human capital abroad via policies that encourage citizens to live, work and invest in Ukraine.

9. Increase governmental spending on value-based healthcare significantly (targeting the EU level), and enhancing food safety to ensure general public health.

10. Drive Ukraine’s energy independence with a fully liberalized energy market and implementation of a subsoil use code employing best international practices.

 

When implemented, each of these policy milestones may become a bold move towards improving ease of doing business in Ukraine and will serve as a powerful tool to promote Ukraine as an investment destination. The American Chamber of Commerce in Ukraine will continue to help businesses to operate and invest in Ukraine, and support the Ukrainian government to implement reforms.

Members of the American Chamber of Commerce believe in Ukraine, continue to create, invest and innovate, boosting Ukraine’s economy and pushing for much-needed reforms. The American Chamber of Commerce in Ukraine will continue the ongoing dialogue with Volodymyr Zelenskiy and his team and is ready to engage with them in order to shape key policy priorities together, boosting Ukraine’s economy and FDI.

 

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