• Germany’s Leoni AG will open its second car parts plant on Sept. 29 in Kolomyia, a city one hour southeast of Ivano Frankivsk. The plant will specialize in electric cable assemblies, largely for BMWs. At buildout, in 2020, the plant will employ 5,000 workers, plant director Ruslan Graham, told Ukr.Media. The company’s first plant, operating in Stryi, Lviv region since 2003, employs 7,500 workers. Graham said the average monthly salary is about $300.
• During the first seven months of this year, Ukraine’s electricity exports were up 43% compared to the same period last year. Ukraine exported a total of 3.5 billion kWh to its Western neighbors – Poland, Hungary, Slovakia, Romania and Moldova. During the same period, Interfax reported, Eastern Ukraine imported 31 million kWh from Russia.
• Ukrenergo, the state owned power transmission company, plans to shift from financing major capital projects with revenues from tariffs to taking out low interest loans from international financial organizations. Ukrenergo chief Vsevolod Kovalchuk told reporters that Ukrenergo's owes about $1.5 billion, largely to the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, the European Investment Bank , the World Bank and KfW. Separately, it was reported that Kyiv residents are behind in the electricity bills to the tune of UAH 1 billion, or $40 million.
• Citing a bigger wheat harvest, UkrAgroConsult is raising its forecast for Ukraine’s 2017/18 wheat exports to 16.5 million tons, up from it previous estimate of 15.5 million tons. This year’s exports would still be lower than last year’s record 17.5 million tons of wheat during the season, which runs from July to June.
• This summer’s harvest of ‘stone fruit’-- peaches, nectarines, plums, apricots, and cherries – hit 15,500 tons, up about 4 percent from last year, according to the Ministry of Agrarian Policy and Food of Ukraine.
• By the end of this year, Ukraine must pay $2 billion in foreign currency debts, Oleh Churiy, Deputy Head of the National Bank of Ukraine, told UNIAN. He added that the total sum to be paid on domestic state foreign currency bonds will be another $730 million. Ukraine's international reserves amount to $17.8 billion. The Bank forecasts that international reserves will hit $20 billion at the end of this year and $27 billion at the end of 2018.
• During the first half of this year, the net profit of Antonov fell by two thirds, to slightly less than $1 million. Antonov is Ukraine’s leading Ukrainian developer and manufacturer of aircraft, a recognized world leader in the niche of transport aircraft. As a state-owned company, it has had trouble attracting foreign joint venture partners.
• State-owned Ukrainian rocket maker Pivdenmash, also known as Yuzhmash, is preparing to ship two new RD-843 liquid fuel rocket engines to the European Space Agency for use in the Vega European launch vehicle, the press service of the Machine Building company reports from its headquarters in Dnipro.
• Last year, Ukrainians working in Germany transferred home 56 million euros, the highest amount in five years, Deutsche Welle reports, citing the Deutsche Bundesbank. Overall, immigrants in Germany transferred 4.2 billion euros to their home countries, a record since the unification of Germany. The largest destination was Turkey, which received about 800 million euros.
• On Tuesday, the National Bank of Ukraine put in circulation a limited edition five hryvnia commemorative coin honoring the 60th anniversary of the launching of the world’s first satellite. Sergey Korolev, leader of this Soviet project, grew up in Odesa and graduated from Kiev Polytechnic Institute, the alma mater of his step father.
• Russians will wait for almost three months for a U.S. visa interview, while the wait in Kyiv is only four days, Russia’s news site Newsland reports. Analyzing data on a U.S. State Department site, Newsland concluded that the wait for a visa interview is four days in Beijing and eight days in Tbilisi. The U.S. embassy in Moscow will resume processing Russian visa requests on Friday. Processing has been indefinitely suspended at the three US consulates in Russia. Washington has suggested that Russians try US embassies in neighboring countries, which could provoke a small flow of Russian visa seekers to Kyiv.
For comments or story tips, please contact UBJ Editor in Chief James Brooke at email@example.com