Victor Yushchenko is presiding over a plenary meeting of the Consultative Investment Council, the President's press office reported.

In his opening statement, the President noted that its participants would consider a “wonderful concept to create favorable conditions to make an investment breakthrough as a complex of urgent measures of state policy.”

“I think it will be the major subject of today’s discussion. This document is consistent with seven different directions of economic policy,” he said, thanking all experts that had been elaborating this project during the past weeks.

The Head of State stressed that he hoped for an “interesting conversation” and urged those present to actively discuss the concept and a memorandum that “includes our conceptual agreements about the development of Ukraine’s investment climate,” which they would sign after the meeting.

In his speech, Yushchenko also said the Ukrainian government had managed to positively change the investment climate since the last meeting of the Council.

“We have implemented the policy we can be proud of. First of all, we are trying to adopt declared measures to liberalize the economy and to organize a competitive and open market,” he said.

The Head of State added that he was “extremely pleased” that these improvements in the investment climate had been “accepted by the world” a few weeks ago. One of the manifestations of this acknowledgment was a “fundamental political resolution” approved at the Ninth Ukraine – EU Summit in Kyiv to recognize Ukraine as a market economy.

Commenting on positive results of his government’s work, Yushchenko stressed that we had also successfully solved the problem to close the so-called free economic zones and zones of priority development.

“Today, we can say this problem has been solved,” he said.

The Head of State noted that at numerous meetings with investors working in these zones they had agreed that producers of exported goods would not pay VAT and customs duties.

“This is a sufficient ‘compensator’ for the lion’s share of the investors to change their approach, continuing to implement their projects,” he said.
The participants of the meeting are going to discuss whether Ukraine’s economic potential meets expectations of foreign investors.

They will consider recommendations made by working groups on market reforms, fiscal and tax policy, banking institutions, information technologies, communications, agriculture, food industry, and image policy.

They are also expected to discuss ways to stabilize and liberalize the tax structure, reforms of the financial market, investment projects in the energy sector, copyright issues, and mechanisms to stimulate information and communication technologies.

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