Kyiv Security Forum

Arseniy Yatsenyuk: The answer to economic challenges — integrating Ukraine into the EU, investments in human capital and industry

11 April 2019, 16:52

“The answer to basic economic challenges in Ukraine — membership of Ukraine in the EU. We need access to cheap capital on a long-term basis. We need investment in human capital and industry,” stressed Arseniy Yatsenyuk during the 12th Kyiv Security Forum on April 11. 

Arseniy Yatsenyuk noted that despite the war, and the loss of 7% of the territory and a 20% decline of the economy — Ukraine expects a growth in economy and a decrease in inflation: “However, like a body needs blood, an economy needs money, access to a market of capital and investment.”

“For Ukraine to be competitive, the state can’t afford to borrow on foreign markets at 10% per annum. At what rate will businesses borrow? How can we compete with a world economy when an enterprise in the EU receives loans at 2-3% per annum, while Ukrainian enterprises receive loans in hryvna at 20% per annum? How can you overcome this type of competition?” he clarified. 

Economic and political stability is a difficult thing to accomplish when 30% of the budget goes to settling international debts, emphasized the founder of the “Open Ukraine” Foundation”: “And in order to refinance, we need to pay 10% at new rates.”

Solutions to the basic economic challenges, Arseniy Yatsenyuk is convinced — Ukraine’s integration into the EU: “We need access to cheap, long-term capital. We need investment. Investment in human capital, industry. Because this is the foundation of the economic growth of a country.”

In that same light, if there is no capital or stock market in Ukraine — we won’t be able to create non-state pension insurance: “Where do you investment this money, that people put aside for retirement?”

Arseniy Yatsenyuk appealed to Ukraine’s European partners: “If privatization is announced, like it was, for example, for the bonds of Oblenergo or Odessa’s port plant — come, take risks, and buy. You have everything you need to do so. 

If you enter the Ukrainian economy and bring your best rules here, it will provide yet another push for reform. Not only from the political point of view, but, first and foremost, from the business point of view, the point of view of people who know how to create and want to succeed,” said Arseniy Yatsenyuk. 

Transparent economic policy is one of the most important preconditions in the fight against corruption. “This is deregulation that has already been partially carried out, transparency of rules and transparency of privatization, reduction of government pressure, new work strategy for the state fiscal service and customs,” added Arseniy Yatsenyuk.


This year’s Kyiv Security Forum, which took place on April 11-12, gathered a record number of participants — over 1000. Among them — high ranking representatives of state and statehood, diplomats, and experts from over 20 countries.  

The annual “Kyiv Security Forum” was initiated by the Arseniy Yatsenyuk “Open Ukraine” Foundation in 2007. Since then, the Forum has become a platform for high-level, international discussions about relevant matters of national security, as well as the security of the Black Sea region, Europe, and the world.