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UBJ AM News: Feb. 24, 2017
No firm date from the IMF leadership for considering the tranche to Ukraine, Russia moves to counter a Ukrainian remittance ban, and Uber is now in Lviv.
image/svg+xml Kyiv Lutsk Rivne Zhytomyr Lviv Ternopil Khmelnytskyi Uzhgorod Chernivtsi Vinnytsia Chernigiv Sumy Kharkiv Poltava Cherkasy Kirovohrad Lugansk Dnipropetrovsk Donetsk Zaporizhzhia Mykolaiv Odesa Kherson Simferopol Sevastopol Ivano- Frankivsk

The International Monetary Fund noted significant progress in its dealings with Ukraine and also acknowledged the reform package Kyiv has implemented since March 2015; however, the IMF executive board hasn't yet set a date to consider allocation of a $1 billion tranche for Ukraine, spokesman Gerry Rice, according to Unian.

Russia drafted a bill banning remittances to Ukraine, and the bill passed on first reading in the Duma, multiple sources reported. It needs to pass on three readings to become law. The ban, which was proposed by United Russia lawmaker Vladislav Reznik, is Russia's answer to a similar action Ukraine took in October.

The National Bank of Ukraine has toughened measures to prevent capital outflow to Russia, the bank stated on its website, Interfax Ukraine reported. The NBU amended the rules for issuing personal licenses for investing abroad, personal licenses for transferring foreign currency outside Ukraine to pay for banking metals and carry out currency transactions and personal licenses for placing currency on accounts outside Ukraine by resident companies and individuals.

Ukrzaliznytsia set the price of gondola train cars too low during some tenders for the purchase of 3,000 of the cars that was announced Jan. 18, the head of the Kriukov Car Building Works said, according to Interfax Ukraine. That made it untenable for Ukrainian manufacturers to take part. Prices for Ukrainian plants have grown because of the higher cost of spare parts and energy.

The Ukrainian bus transportation market could grow between 10 and 20 percent once visa-free travel between Ukraine and the European Union takes effect, Busfor Ukraine boss Oleksandr Pavlovich said, Interfax Ukraine reported.

Uber rolled out its ride service Wednesday in Lviv, multiple sources reported.

USAID launched an agricultural development program in Ukraine that runs through July 2020, Ukrinform reported. Its goals are to create attractive living conditions in rural areas of Ukraine, boost the competitiveness of Ukrainian agricultural products, introduce international quality and safety standards and provide access to new export markets in EU countries.

Ukrainian company Interpipe signed a five-year deal with the United States' Progress Rail Services to provide more than 10,000 train car wheels and more than 1,000 train car axles per year, Novoe Vremya reported, citing Ukrainski Novyny.

German clothier Marc Cain launched an internet retail store in Ukraine, Novoe Vremya reported based on a story in Ukrainski Novyny. Merchandise ordered from the website will be delivered by Novaya Pochta.

Ukraine’s industrial output grew 5.6 percent in January in annual terms, according to the State Statistics Service.

The Ukrainian automotive factory Eurocar, which manufactures vehicles for the Czech carmaker Skoda, is launching production of a crossover called the Kodiaq on March 9, according to Novoe Vremya.

In Ukraine, there are 3,500 state-owned enterprises, and many of them are unprofitable because of inefficient management, but they can be privatized only under state control. That was Prime Minister Volodomyr Groysman's message during a briefing at the Kharkiv Machine Building Plant, according to Ukrinform. When asked what state-run businesses are ready to be privatized now, he responded that Ukrspirt is available for purchase by buyers in any country except Russia. He added that the state wants to maintain control of strategic businesses such as Turboatom.

The State Property Fund is expressing displeasure with ESU, a company that is a major shareholder in the country's largest landline service provider Ukrtelecom, Unian reported. According to the agency, ESU hasn't fulfilled a number of investment obligations it undertook when it privatized the telecom giant.

For comments and news tips, please email UBJ AM editor David Edwards at david.edwards@theubj.com.

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