15th Annual Ukraine Investor Conference: Keynote speech by Head of EU Delegation to Ukraine Hugues Mingarelli

Dragon Capital held its 15th Annual Ukraine Investor Conference on Feb. 12-13 in Kyiv.

The event drew about 400 foreign investors and local guests, with foreign institutions whose representatives attended boasting over $3 trillion under management, invited speakers and media representatives. This was matched by a high-profile speaker faculty, which included the president and prime minister of Ukraine, the National Bank governor, senior Cabinet officials, and many others. The size of the audience, one of the largest in the history of our events, demonstrated investors’ keen interest in Ukraine’s double elections this year, presidential in March and parliamentary in October. Politics was, therefore, a major focus of the conference.

Below please find our summary of the keynote speech by Hugues Mingarelli, Head of EU Delegation to Ukraine:

  • 2018 was a good year for Ukraine from an economic perspective, confirming the country is moving in the right direction thanks to its civil society, business community and political leadership.
  • But current economic growth at around 3% is not enough to create jobs and stop the outflow of young people. Structural reforms need to be accelerated, with two years of talk about unbundling Naftogaz Ukrainy but no progress in this area is a good example. Privatization is another laggard.
    Sustainable reform process requires social cohesion, but social inequality in Ukraine is still too big. Social cohesion and rule of law are what Ukraine needs.
  • Ukrainian people will not allow a reversal of the pro-European course. The AA/DCFTA has been very beneficial, with harmonization of legislation and lower tariffs helping expand the EU share of Ukrainian exports to over 40% from 25%.
  • Ukraine can become part of the EU single market in several years and is not a liability but an opportunity and a chance for the EU.