Plan for the Modernization of UkraineВTo restore the economy of Ukraine, attract foreign investment and create jobs – such tasks have been undertaken by the Agency for the Modernization of Ukraine.
The Agency was created upon an initiative of Mr. Dmitry Firtash, the President of the Federation of Employers of Ukraine, and presented on March 3, 2015 at the Forum Ukraine Tomorrow. The structure of the Agency includes influential European politicians and experts, who are to submit a plan for the modernization of Ukraine – a package of reforms needed for the economic development of Ukraine – after 200 days.
The elaboration of the modernization plan is coordinated by the founders of the Agency – Mr. Karl-Georg Wellmann, Head of the German-Ukrainian Parliamentary group, a Bundestag Member; Lord Risby, British MP; and Mr. Bernard-Henry Lévy, French public activist, writer and philosopher.
The AMU team is led by Michael Spindelegger, the influential Austrian politician who served as the Minister of Finance of Austria (2013-2014), Vice-Chancellor of Austria (2011-2014), and the Foreign Minister of Austria (2008-2013).
The elaboration of the plan involves scientists and experts from Ukraine, Germany, France, the UK, Austria and Poland. In the framework of the Agency eight streams led by the influential European politicians and experts were created. The European integration work stream will be led by Gunther Verheugen, European Commissioner for the EU Enlargement in 1999-2004. The finance and taxation will be a responsibility of Peer Steinbrück, the architect of the Euro protection program during the 2008 economic crisis. The economic priorities will be under the guidance of Mme. Laurence Parisot, one of the most influential women in France and an ex-President of MEDEF (French Employers Association) in 2005-2013. Trade affairs will belong to the jurisdiction of Lord Mandelson who used to work with Tony Blair’s and Gordon Brown’s governments later serving as the European Commissioner for Trade. Rupert Scholtz will head the constitutional reform work stream and anti-corruption activities will be elaborated under the guidance of Włodzimierz Cimoszewicz serving as the Prime Minister of Poland in 1996-1997 and after that, in his capacity of the Foreign Minister of Poland (2001-2005), he signed the Agreement on Polish accession to the EU. The law enforcement-related proposals will be supervised by Lord McDonald who served as the Prosecutor General of England and Wales in 2003 – 2008. Health care proposals will be devised under the leadership of Bernard Couchner – ex-Foreign Minister of France and founder of the international organization “Doctors Without Borders”.
During the Agency presentation Dmitry Firtash, the FEU President, also noted that as reforms started to be implemented, the Ukrainian Restoration Fund amounting to $300 bn would be set up.
“While the plan is being drawn up, we will be simultaneously pursuing discussions with investors giving due account to their interests and expectations. We are looking to raise some $300 bn. This is the estimated amount needed for the comprehensive quality reconstruction of the Ukrainian economy. What is important is that this money will be channeled into business and specific projects and we will be able to see their efficiency at once,” added Mr. Firtash.
In his speech at the Forum Ukraine tomorrow, John Whittingdale, a member of the British Parliament, said that British Prime Minister James Cameron had expressed his support for the initiative of the Agency for the Modernization of Ukraine establishing. “I spoke with the Prime Minister of Great Britain. He said that we can help, but the Ukrainians must fight corruption. We can send billions of dollars of aid, and we see quite effective leaders in the industry. Before we talk about money, we have to create a strategy. The challenge is of incredible magnitude, but we have the tools. I am glad that Ukrainian trade unions, and both employers and investors are represented in the initiative”, said John Whittingdale.
Bernard-Henri Levy, co-founder of the Agency for the Modernization of Ukraine, noted that French President Francois Hollande recognized it as the “Marshall Plan of our time”. "President Hollande – French President said: I support you and give you the ability to unlock the potential”, said Bernard-Henri Levy during the presentation of the Agency.
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