Two prominent centers of American trade and investment showcased speakers from Ukraine as business and government leaders travelled to New York and Miami in March to make the case for further investment into energy and infrastructure.
Organized by A-7 Conferences, the Ukraine investment forum was held March 5 in New York and March 9 in Miami.
Infrastructure Minister Volodymyr Omelyan lead the delegation to “Invest and Trade in Ukraine.”Working for this key ministry for the last four years, Omelyan rose from deputy minister to minister two years ago. A former diplomat, Omelyan is a fluent English speaker and a persuasive advocate for modernizing Ukraine through foreign investment.
Infrastructure ministry’s responsibilities include telecommunications, roads, ports, the state railroad and the national post office. Omelyan wants to increasingly open this sector to foreign investment, either through joint ventures or concessions.
In Miami and New York, Omelyan was joined by senior business leaders. They were tasked with strengthening the economic ties between the US and Ukraine by making the case for further investment into such fast growing areas as solar and wind energy.
Igor Smelyansky, acting director general of Ukrainian Postal Service, or Ukrposhta, spoke at the Miami event about new opportunities for foreign business partners. With e-cormmerce growing in Ukraine, Ukrposhta has invested heavily in the parcel delivery business.
Also speaking in Miami was Aleksandr Riepkin from the Tokmak Solar Energy company – one of Ukraine's most important renewable energy firms – based in sunny, south-eastern Zaporizhia.
“The renewable [energy] sector in Ukraine was closed to the outside world for a long time, due to Ukrainian law,” Riepkin said. “But from 2016, we have been changing this situation and now Ukraine is becoming more open to investors in this area.”
Agreement came from Myron Rabij, a founder of the Dentons law practice in Kyiv who specializes in energy and infrastructure.
“It's an extremely dynamic space for investment,” he said. “There's already a lot of good investors with lots of positive drive coming into the market. The United States has been making significant moves into the energy sector, into some very significant projects.”
At these US-Ukraine investment forums, one core message was clear: Ukraine's infrastructure and energy sector is increasingly open for foreign investment.
Additional speakers included: Andriy Konechenkov, vice president, World Wind Energy Association; Maria Barabash, president & CEO, A7 GROUP; Katya Soldak, editorial director, Forbes International Editions; Ilya Ponomarev, founder, Trident Acquisitions; Andrew Pryma, investor, Ukraine Business Journal; Iryna Venediktova, chair of the Civil Law Department of Kharkiv University Law School; Myroslava Gongadze, head of the Ukrainian Service, Voice of America; Viacheslav Andriiko, general director, Willis Towers Watson, and Leonid Melezhyk, president, MGI Group.
Organizers and partners were: A7 Conferences, Dentons, Tokmak Solar Energy, AirLife, Crelia Capital, A7 Capital, Turkish Airlines, Ukrposhta, RBC Ukraine, Ukrainian Association of Agro Business, Newspaper Business, and HeadHunter Ukraine.
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Posted March 26, 2018