•Ukraine's Cabinet estimates that the country will borrow $7 billion in 2017, including $3.2 billion in the foreign market, according to Interfax Ukraine. For comparison, the 2016 budget foresaw borrowing of $9.3 billion, including $4.5 billion abroad.
•The predicted 2 to 3 percent GDP growth in 2017 is insufficient to trigger an economic recovery, Ukrinform cited the head of the Blazer Fund as saying.
•Ukraine ranked 74th in Forbes' annual ranking of best countries for business, five places ahead of Russia, Novoe Vremya reported. Bookending Ukraine on the list of 139 countries were Indonesia and Armenia.
•Prime Minister Volodymyr Groysman said land reform in the agricultural sector must be finished by 2020, and the 2017 budget calls for the leasing of state-owned land through land auctions, multiple sources reported. The Rada extended the moratorium on the sale of farmland imposed in 2002 until 2018. Lawmakers later submitted bill No. 5535 on farmland turnover to parliament.
•Foreign direct investment from China and South Korea could flow into Ukraine in 2017, Blazer Fund boss Oleh Ustenko said, as reported by Ukrinform. He spoke of the possibility of Ukraine and China signing an FTA agreement, and he said China considers Ukraine a platform for marketing its products to the European Union.
•Ukraine's national budget surplus in November totaled $549 million thanks to a significant improvement in target revenue and simultaneous moderate spending, Interfax Ukraine reported, citing the State Treasury Service. In the January-November period, the national budget deficit was $1.7 billion. Only $4 million was received from privatization.
•Nova Poshta launched express delivery service from China to Ukraine in cooperation with China's SF Express, Interfax Ukraine reported. Buyers can order delivery from the largest Chinese online shops, including Ali Express, to anywhere in Ukraine. In related news, Ukrposhta seeks to increase net revenue by 20 percent in 2017.
•The Infrastructure Ministry approved Ukrzaliznytsia's plan to increase cargo transportation fees in 2017, Interfax Ukraine reported. The increase is slated to happen in two stages: 16 percent in the first quarter and 16 percent in the fourth quarter.
•The Cabinet drafted a medium-term development plan through 2020 that is based on economic growth and revitalization of Ukrainian industry, Unian reported.
•The Cabinet approved a proposal to impose special import duties on European automobiles when these imports threaten development of the domestic automobile industry, Novoe Vremya reported.
•Russia's Elektromontazh LLC plans to build a $44 million section of railroad to connect the Voronezh region and the city of Rostov while bypassing Ukraine, according to Construction.ru.
For comments and news tips, please email UBJ AM editor David Edwards at email@example.com.
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