• During the first half of 2017, the number of employees of Ukraine’s 50 largest IT companies grew by 7%, or almost 3,000, compared to the second half of 2016. According to Dou.ua, the top five companies in terms of the number of employees are: EPAM with 4,800 employees; SoftServe with 4,605; Luxoft, with 3,865; GlobalLogic, with 3,005; and Ciklum with 2,943.
• Ukraine increased its poultry exports by 29 percent during the first seven months of this year, compared to same period last year. According to the State Fiscal Service, exports totaled 169,516 tons, earning $228.19 million. Exports of pork, a less important category, rose 2.8 times to 3,927 tons this year, earning $8.2 million.
• Ukraine’s installed solar capacity increased by 35 percent in the first half of 2017, attaining 705 MW. According to PVMagazine, solar now counts for about half of Ukraine’s renewable energy generation capacity of 1.46 GW. According to IB Centre, 57 new large and medium-sized solar plants, as well as several hundred small roof solar power stations with a total capacity of around 360 MW will be built in Ukraine in the second half of this year.
• Ukraine’s international reserves hit $18 billion on Aug. 1, according to the National Bank of Ukraine. Despite a reduction of less than 1% in July, the international reserves have grown 15% this year.
• Ukraine’s online advertising market totaled $32 million in the first half of this year, up 42 percent year-on-year, reports the Ukrainian Internet Association. Banners accounted for 39.6 percent of the market, in-stream video formed 40.6 percent, and the share of in-page video was 4.7 percent.
• A light rail line from Kyiv’s central rail station to Boryspil airport would take only two years to complete, if Chinese funding can be restored, Infrastructure Minister Volodymyr Omelyan told Obozrevatel news site. Trains would travel on an existing electrified line to Darnytsia Railway Station on the Left Bank, then continue east 25 km, partly on a new spur, to Boryspil, Kyiv’s busiest airport. It would then continue another 10 km to Boryspil, turning this city of 60,000 people into a bedroom community of Kyiv.
• Naftogaz Ukrainy will expand its contract claim, from $13 billion by $18 billion, against Russia's Gazprom in the Arbitration Institute of the Stockholm Chamber of Commerce, Naftogaz Chief Commercial Director Yuriy Vitrenko said on Channel 5 TV.
• Russia’s Transport Minister Maxim Sokolov has rejected Ukrainian charges that construction of the Crimea-Russia bridge of the Kerch Strait will force a one month closure of the strait to shipping. Solokov said the closure, probably in September, will last only three days. The 19 km long bridge is to open next year for car and trucks, and in 2019 for trains.
• British-based Stiletto Systems Ltd. and Canadian MAGNUM want to take part in a tender of the Ministry of Economic Development and Trade to build a ammunition factory in Ukraine. Roman Karpenko, head of Stiletto Ukraine, told Interfax the British-Canadian alliance has built modern ammunition plants in several countries and is ready to build in Ukraine. Last month, the alliance submitted a proposal for the project to the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine.
• Ukraine is investing about $40 million this year in upgrading its military aviation, President Petro Poroshenko has said. This investment comes after the Ukrainian Air Force largely withdrew from the conflict zone, following several costly shoot downs at the start of fighting. Following the successful launch of a Vega rocket powered with a Ukrainian engine, Prime Minister Volodymyr Groysman says Ukraine should maintain its historic positions in aircraft and rocket building. Launched from French Guyana on Aug. 1 the Vega placed into orbit three earth observation satellites, for Israel, Italy and France. Groysman wrote on his Facebook page: “Aircraft and rocket building are those sectors where we should maintain our leading positions in the world!”
• "Ukrposhta," the national postal service, plans to lease its real estate through the Prozorro electronic tender system. The goal is to increase revenue by nine times, earning $4 million a year in rents by 2020, Dmitry Sennichenko, director for management of real estate and infrastructure, told reporters.
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