Zelenskiy supports independent central bank, farmland market

15 April 2019

If elected president, Volodymyr Zelenskiy would preserve the central bank’s independence and keep its governor, Yakiv Smoliy, Ukraine’s former Economy Minister Aivaras Abromavicius told Reuters in an article published on Apr. 12. He would also lobby a reluctant parliament to lift a moratorium on the sale of farmland and change how businesses are taxed, said Abromavicius, who is one of two former ministers serving as advisers to the Zelenskiy campaign in order to earn the confidence of investors. Zelenskiy has met IMF officials and the two sides agreed neither wants Ukraine to be in an IMF program as such, Abromavicius said. He added that the IMF’s departure depended on Ukraine being successful, implementing reforms, paying back debts and tapping into open markets.

 

Another adviser, former Finance Minister Alex Danylyuk, accompanied Zelenskiy to an Apr. 12 meeting with French President Emmanuel Macron at the Elysee Palace in Paris. Danylyuk was seated to the right of Zelenskiy at the negotiating table, while on his lefthand side was Ruslan Riaboshapka, a former deputy justice minister. Zelenskiy told Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty afterwards they had a “very constructive meeting,” during which they discussed “ceasing the war in Donbas,” among other topics.

 

Zenon Zawada: The instability created by a Zelenskiy presidency will affect Ukraine’s political situation before it reaches the financial sphere. The biggest risk so far is if he acts as a passive or weak president, a vacuum that will be seized upon by veteran politicians, like Yulia Tymoshenko. She already advocated throughout her campaign for amending the Constitution to strip the presidency of its remaining authority (mostly in foreign policy and defense) in order to create a parliamentary republic. Judging by her comments made on Apr. 12 on the presidential race, Tymoshenko is already skeptical of Zelenskiy and looks to be merely preparing for the opportune moment in the coming months to go into full opposition to him in order to propose stripping authority from him. The farmland market is a key issue to begin her attacks on Zelenskiy, considering she has always been staunchly opposed to its creation.

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