On 5 February, Yuliia Svyrydenko, First Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Economy of Ukraine, met with Katarina Mathernova, EU Ambassador to Ukraine, to discuss Ukraine’s Plan under the Ukraine Facility, investment attraction, SME support, exports, etc. The event was attended by Deputy Ministers of Economy Volodymyr Kuzio, Taras Kachka, Oleksii Sobolev and Tetiana Berezhna.
“The Government of Ukraine is grateful to the European Union for the recently allocated assistance package of EUR 50 billion, which will be used to implement the Ukraine Facility programme for the next 4 years. The full draft of the programme is already prepared, and a trialogue between the European Council, the European Commission and the European Parliament is now underway to finalise it. As of today, the Plan includes 144 indicators, 45 of which will be achieved in 2024,” said Yuliia Svyrydenko.
The funds under the Ukraine Facility will be disbursed under three components: direct budget support – EUR 39 billion, a special investment instrument to cover risks in priority sectors – EUR 8 billion, and technical support and interest coverage on loans under the programme – EUR 3 billion. Ukraine expects to receive the first tranche of EUR 18 billion in 2024.
The Ukrainian side spoke about the strategic projects of the Ministry of Economy for the current year, such as investment insurance (including war risks), attracting investments (donor and domestic) to restore private business, state property reform, SME support programs, humanitarian demining, eOselia, labour market modernization, ACAA Agreement (industrial visa-free regime), etc.
The European side was informed about the work on attracting investments into the Ukrainian economy. Thus, work is underway to attract structured financing under Pillar 2 of the Ukraine Facility to implement investment projects of Ukrainian and international investors in priority sectors of the economy, develop an investment attraction agency, etc.
Representatives of the Ministry of Economy also spoke about the priorities of the Strategy for the Development of Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises until 2027, which aims to address the pressing problems of SMEs related to access to finance, logistics disruptions, reduced purchasing power and lack of qualified employees. In particular, the European delegation was briefed on the Government's efforts to optimise business support in Ukraine, including the 5-7-9 affordable lending programme, and to increase support for medium and large enterprises, including large investment projects, industrial parks, major exporters and manufacturing companies.
In addition, in cooperation with the EU, work will be intensified to inform Ukrainian small and medium-sized businesses about opportunities under the Single Market program, facilitate business access to EU structural funds and the EU for Ukraine initiative, the EYE4Ukraine and Mobilitas 4 Ukraine projects, and other initiatives.
The parties also discussed foreign policy and integration into the EU market. The issues discussed included the suspension of import duties and quotas on Ukrainian exports to the EU until 2024, strengthening Ukraine’s export potential, identifying opportunities for preferential exports of domestic goods to promising foreign markets and involving Ukrainian producers in European and transregional value chains, and implementing the measures of the Priority Action Plan for the Implementation of the EU-Ukraine Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Area for 2023-2024.