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vol. 16, issue 27

Legendary

orLackluster?

Wladimir Klitschko’s victory over David Haye on July 2 means that the Ukrainian heavyweight and his brother, Vitali, hold all four major world titles in boxing’s top weight division. But critics say their defensive style that has brought so many victories is boring. What do the Klitschkos have to do to become legends on or off the ring? See story on page 10 and editorial on page 4. Ukrainian IBF and WBO world champion Wladimir Klitschko celebrates with his brother Vitali (L) holding up their belts after the fight against British WBA champion David Haye in the northern German city of Hamburg on July 2. (AFP)

Protests erupt in Kyiv ahead of key pension reform vote Reuters – Thousands of protesters rallied outside parliament on July 7 before a final vote on a pension reform that would raise the retirement age for women and is key to unfreezing a $15 billion International Monetary Fund lending program. There are nine pensioners per 10 pension fund contributors and the ratio is set to worsen in the future, making

Inside:

the system an unbearable burden for the state budget, analysts say. The government of President Viktor Yanukovych pledged last year to implement the reform as part of its deal with the IMF. The Fund suspended payouts to Ukraine this year after the reform was delayed. Ukraine’s central bank said in May that a failure to regain access Æ11

News Æ 2, 10 – 14 Opinion Æ 4, 5, 13

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West worried about Kyiv, but still keen on closer ties B Y Y U R I Y O N YSH K I V ONYSHKIV@KYIVPOST.COM

As former Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko appeared in court three more times last week and faced a possible fourth criminal charge, Western officials reinforced their growing concerns that President Viktor Yanukovych’s administration was attempting to sideline his rival through politically motivated investigations. Concerns that Ukraine is backsliding on democracy one year into Yanukovych’s rule are sky high. This week, Ukrainian officials launched a forth criminal case which implicates Tymoshenko in corrupt gas dealings dating back to the mid-1990s. Nearly a dozen of her associates are already behind bars, as blatant evidence of corruption by current high-ranking officials goes uninvestigated. In a warning last month that Ukraine was sliding towards authoritarianism, U.S.-based Freedom House also pointed to a flawed regional election held last year and rising pressure on the few media that still report critically about Yanukovych’s administration. The U.S. and European Union have stepped up criticism in recent statements. Following a July 5 meeting with Ukraine’s Foreign Minister Kostyantyn Gryshchenko, EU enlargement chief Stefan Fuele expressed “deep concern at the recent developments in the cases of Mrs Tymoshenko and other Æ11

Ukraine’s Vanquished Jews: Story of how one family saved a Jewish girl Editor’s Note: This is the third of a five-part series that examines the Holocaust in western Ukraine that nearly wiped out the Jewish community during Nazi Germany’s occupation in World War II. This segment, “Surviving The Holocaust in Lviv,” ,” tells the story of how one Ukrainian family helped a Jewish girl survive. BY NATA L IA A . F ED USCH A K FEDUSCHAK@KYIVPOST.COM

LVIV – Genya Ruda was one of the few lucky ones. When Nazi occupiers created a ghetto for Jews in Lviv in 1942, the Petriv family bribed a guard to let the little girl out. Then they

sheltered her for the rest of the war. The rest of Ruda’s family perished, as did most of h the estimated 220,000 Jews who were in Lviv during the war. In 1995, the Petrivs were declared Righteous Among The Nations by

Business Æ 6 – 9

Employment/Real Estate/ Lifestyle Æ 15 – 21, 24 Classifieds Æ 22, 23

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Israel, an honor given to non-Jews who risked their lives or liberty to save Jews Je from extermination by the Nazis. Some 2,272 persons from Ukraine have been granted this status, placing the country fourth on the list of savior nations, preceded by Poland, the Netherlands and France. But the rarity of acts of selflless heroism h like that of the Petrivs raises the question of whether enough was done to help Jews like Ruda. Historically, the region that Æ12


2 News

JULY 8, 2011

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July 8, 2011

Vol. 16, Issue 27 Copyright © 2011 by Kyiv Post The material published in the Kyiv Post may not be reproduced without the written consent of the publisher. All material in the Kyiv Post is protected by Ukrainian and international laws. The views expressed in the Kyiv Post are not necessarily the views of the publisher nor does the publisher carry any responsibility for those views. Газета “Kyiv Post” видається ТОВ “ПаблікМедіа”.

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прим. Ціна за домовленістю. Матерiали, надрукованi в газетi “Kyiv Post” є власнiстю видавництва, захищенi мiжнародним та українським законодавством i не можуть бути вiдтворенi у будь(якiй формi без письмового дозволу Видавця. Думки, висловленi у дописах не завжди збiгаються з поглядами видавця, який не бере на себе вiдповiдальнiсть за наслiдки публiкацiй. Засновник ТОВ “Паблік-Медіа” Головний редактор Брайан Боннер Адреса видавця та засновника співпадають: Україна, м. Київ, 01034, вул. Прорізна, 22Б Реєстрацiйне свiдоцтво Кв № 15261(3833ПР від 19.06.09. Передплатний індекс ДП Преса 40528 Надруковано ТОВ «Новий друк», 02660, Київ, вулиця Магнітогорська, 1, тел.: 559-9147 Замовлення № 11-5012 Аудиторське обслуговування ТОВ АФ “ОЛГА Аудит” З приводу розміщення реклами звертайтесь: +380 44 234-65-03.

www.kyivpost.ua: дайджест статей КИЕВ: ЦУМ перестроят «лучшие мировые специалисты» Ахметова Катерина Панова Киевский ЦУМ, дорогой сердцу ностальгирующих по советскому прошлому украинцев, доживает последние дни. Универмаг закроется для реконструкции, вероятнее всего, уже этой осенью. Перестраивать ЦУМ будут иностранные архитекторы: до августа они предлагают концепции нового ЦУМ в Киеве ЦУМа на рассмотрение владельцу здания. В прошлом году владельцем ЦУМа стала компания ЭСТА Холдинг, входящая в группу СКМ Рината Ахметова. После интеграции здания и земли под ним в единый имущественный комплекс, ЭСТА Холдинг объявила о планах реконструкции ЦУМа...

Anna Sinkova, a Ukrainian activist, was jailed for three month after she fried eggs last December (above) over the eternal flame at a memorial to World War II veterans in Kyiv. (youtube.com)

Police release ‘eggfrying’ activists

УКРАИНА: До Тимошенко суддя Кірєєв займався п’яницями та вкраденими велосипедами Світлана Тучинська Для Родіона Кірєєва літо 2011 року може стати вершиною кар’єри — не часто суддям випадає шанс судити колишнього прем'єр-міністра, за справою якого слідкує весь світ. Кар’єру 31-річного судді Кірєєва можна назвати фантастичною. Призначений суддею у травні 2009 року і маючи досвід суддівства у Березані, де проживає менше 17 тисяч людей, він стрімко піднявся із "хуліганки" до головної судової справи країни...

K Y I V PO ST STA FF

Law enforcement officials in Ukraine said on July 4 they would release two activists who had been detained three days earlier for allegedly desecrating an eternal flame at a World War II veterans memorial in downtown Kyiv by frying eggs over it. Officials stressed, however, that the activists will be ordered by a travel ban to stay put in Ukraine as the investigation continues. The police said a third suspected participant was released under a travel ban on July 2. The activists had acted in solidarity with Anna Sinkova, who was arrested in March by law enforcement for frying eggs and sausages over the eternal flame at Kyiv’s Tomb of the Unknown Soldier on Dec. 16. Sinkova says she was protesting against the monument to a totalitarian Soviet regime and trying to draw the public’s attention to the problems of war veterans. After spending three months in pre-trial detention, she was released on June 30 under a travel ban pending trial. The Kharkiv Human Rights Group submitted a report on Sinkova to the European Court of Human Rights, raising concerns about political persecution and illegal detention. “All the young people detained

Відповідальність за зміст реклами несе замовник. Mailing address: Kyiv Post, Prorizna Street 22B, Kyiv, Ukraine, 01034 Advertising tel. +380 44 234-65-03 fax +380 44 234-63-30 advertising@kyivpost.com Editorial staff tel. +380 44 234-65-00 fax +380 44 234-30-62 news@kyivpost.com Subscriptions Nataliia Protasova tel. +380 44 234-64-09 fax +380 44 234-63-30 subscribe@kyivpost.com Distribution Serhiy Kuprin tel. +380 44 234-64-09 fax +380 44 234-63-30 distribution@kyivpost.com Marketing Iuliia Panchuk tel. +380 44 234-30-40 fax +380 44 234-63-30 marketing@kyivpost.com

БИЗНЕС: Нові аграрні мита: Страх для експортерів, крах для виробників Оксана Гриценко Міжнародний бізнес б'є на сполох проти ідеї уряду України розширити перелік експортних мит на агропродукцію, лякаючи можливостями іміджевих втрат для країни та зубожінням сільгоспвиробників. Самі ж аграрії хвилюються, що через вже наявні та можливі побори держави вони знову не зможуть заробити на цьогорічному врожаї. Після введення зернових мит, у Міністерстві економічного розвитку і торгівлі назріла ідея брати гроші за експорт інших культур рослинництва таких, як жито, овес, гречка та просо, а також обкладати митом соєві боби, ріпак та соняшникову олію вітчизняного виробництва... HI-TECH: Мечта техноманьяка: Первый взгляд на смартфон Nokia N9 Алексей Бондарев Это прозвучит странно, но, оказывается, рождение после смерти действительно возможно. Nokia похоронила так и не увидевшую свет операционную систему MeeGo, разработкой которой занималась вместе с Intel, объявила о партнерстве с Microsoft... И все-таки выпустила модель N9, которая работает на MeeGo. И, как ни странно, это просто потрясающий Nokia N9 смартфон... Полный текст статей и блогов можно прочитать на www.kyivpost.uа

Anna Sinkova

confessed to the crime and explained that they did so in support of Anna Sinkova,” the police said in the statement. A video tape showing the three activists frying eggs over the monument can be seen on YouTube. One of them, Kyrylo Babentsov, is a spokesperson for the right-wing Svoboda political movement. Another, Bohdan Tytsky, is a member of a lessknown movement called the Black Committee. The third activist arrested this month is Oleksandr Lazarenko.

TEN MOST-READ STORIES OF THE WEEK ON

ДЕСЯТЬ САМЫХ ЧИТАЕМЫХ СТАТЕЙ НЕДЕЛИ НА

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1

Ukraine’s Vanquished Jews: ‘Their fate was clear to them’

2

Ukraine’s ‘top lawyers’ can be worth knowing

3

Showtime for Show Trial

4

Cargill CEO: Nation should help feed world instead of shaking up prices

5

Topless FEMEN activists protest pension reform in Kyiv (PHOTO)

6

Lviv Salo restaurant serves tasty lard in many shapes, forms

7

Tefft: Ukrainian officials know US concerns about democratic ‘backsliding’

8

Top Lawyers: Michael Kharenko

9

In speech, Clinton worries over democracy in Ukraine

10

Forbes editor: Ukraine amongst world’s worst economies

1

Прощавай, Ющенко

2

У Кірєєва не витримали нерви

3

В России опять авиакатастрофа

4

Кличко побеждает Хэя по очкам и забирает его пояс

5

Азаров оконфузився зі святами

6

Луческу признал поражение, но не понял, зачем был нужен этот матч

7

Рада хоче штрафувати інформагентства і блогерів

8

Синица в руках. Почему победу Владимира Кличко забудут

9

Нові аграрні мита: Страх для експортерів, крах для виробників

10

Янукович назначил себе еще двух советников


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3

July 8, 2011 Advertisement

ANTI-CORRUPTION BLITZ An insight into corruption and bribery fighting initiatives

C

orruption has been a rampant obstacle for doing business and investment since Ukraine gained the independence. The EBA repeatedly makes efforts to curb the corrosive influence of corruption and has recently established a close cooperation with OECD Anti-Corruption Network for Eastern Europe and Central Asia (ACN). Corruption and bribery undermine good governance and economic development of Ukraine, distorting country’s competitiveness. The main areas where this phenomenon is frequent are: business licenses, tax collection, customs, and public procurement. Transparency International’s Global Corruption Barometer 2010 reveals that the most fraud-affected institutions in Ukraine are: judiciary, police, public officials, parliament and political parties, whereas 59% of counter-corruption actions of the Government are considered ineffective. On 1 July 2011, the EBA co-hosted a business consultation, initiated by OECD campaigners and aimed at consolidating business in a fight against fraud. OECD ACN delegates presented the overview of policy instruments, practical guidelines of good governance approach developed by OECD to help policy-makers and managers promote integrity and resistance to corruption in public and private sectors. OECD-EBA consultation fostered the exchange of experience and good practice among business leaders, legal practitioners and auditors. The participants proactively discussed the factors fuelling corruption, namely the opaque VAT refund scheme and redundancy of licenses to be obtained by business. Strong and explicit commitment from senior management to the company's corporate ethics and compliance is important to tackle corruption and bribery internally. The EBA will further prioritise the fight against corruption and serve as intermediary between Ukraine’s business and OECD in order to monitor, detect and practically combat corruption and bribery.

5BY

NATALIYA Mykolska, Senior Associate, Vasil Kisil & Partners

Dr. JULIAN Ries, Partner, Head of BEITEN BURKHARDT Kyiv office

Fighting corruption in Ukraine: long way to go etting things done fast does not always work in Ukraine, especially when it comes to fighting corruption. It took couple of years for the Ukrainian Government to develop new anti-corruption legislation and most probably it will take even more to make it really work. More than two years ago on 11 June 2009 the Parliament of Ukraine adopted anti-corruption law package consisting of three laws. Entry into force of the latter was postponed several times due to numerous shortfalls and inconsistencies with other laws, incl. the Constitution of Ukraine. Finally, provisions of the laws faced fierce criticism of the Constitutional Court of Ukraine and the Group of States against corruption (GRECO) and were cancelled on 5 January 2011 to give the “green light” to the new anticorruption laws initiated by the President of Ukraine Mr. Yanukovych that entered into force on 1 July 2011. Even though the new anti-corruption laws are very progressive and eliminated lots of shortfalls of the previous anticorruption package, the new laws are also far from being perfect. Just to give few examples: the definition of corruption offences is too broad and includes promise and offer of unlawful benefit that should not be regarded as an administrative offence or a crime; the list of persons to be held liable for corruption offences is too broad and includes officials in private sector and persons providing public services (auditors, notaries, etc.) etc. Yet, only the time will show how new anti-corruption legislation will be implemented in action.

he impact of corruption on our business as a German law firm is pretty low. We strive hard to comply with all local norms, in particular, with tax and labour law, thus avoiding any dependence on Ukrainian official’s “mercy attitude”. We see this approach with numerous clients, who often walk an extra mile in order to avoid any situation where additional “motivation” could be expected. Practice shows that it is very important to stick to all rules in order to successfully combat corruption. However, Ukrainian “realia” show, that this is not enough: sometimes officials create problems artificially, taking bizarre views at a case and making the enterprise to choose either the long way through Ukrainian courts, or taking the shortcut… Unfortunately, the situation in Ukrainian courts is not much better. Notoriously underpaid judges are too often open for monetary arguments. However, we have had good experience in making the court procedure public, involving mass media and the embassy. The likelihood to receive an unbiased court decision is much higher where judges feel public control. Nevertheless, for many less important cases and for administrative matters, it is impractical or impossible to have public control. Therefore, it is important that the legal environment becomes less susceptible to corrupt practices. It is absolutely necessary to ease licensing and permit procedures and to further deregulate the business environment. What was done so far - for example - regarding construction permits, were just several steps in the right direction – but this is by far not the end of the road.

G

T

OLESYA Melnyk, Audit Partner, Ernst&Young

B

ribery and corruption become a serious business issue for organizations worldwide. Being a global organization with strong ethical rules our firm is acknowledging and communicating externally its zero bribery tolerance. We hear from our clients their growing concern over corruption risks and assist companies worldwide to build robust anticorruption systems. It should be mentioned that governments across the world are paying more attention to this issue introducing stricter anti-corruption laws (for example, UK Bribery Act, recent “anticorruption” regulations in Russia, new law “On fundamental principles of prevention and counteracting corruption” approved by the Verkhovna Rada and Ukrainian President). However, business and civil community expects more stringent enforcement of such regulations, especially in the CIS, including Ukraine. Also the regulations in over-bureaucratized areas such as, for example, licenses and permits should become more transparent in order to reduce opportunities for corruption. On the other hand business should promote strong ethical and anti-bribery principles, develop and consistently apply programs counteracting corruption, since the companies associated with corruption are less attractive for the employees and business partners. According to the results of the European Fraud Survey conducted by Ernst & Young in 2011, more than 62% of Ukrainian respondents would not like to work for/with a company involved in a major bribery case. Surprisingly only 45% of European respondents share this view. This fact gives a clear message to Ukrainian government and business community – citizens of Ukraine are supportive to the anti-corruption initiatives, but they need to be enforced strictly and consistently.

EBA Business Morning with Mr. Vitaliy Zakharchenko The European Business Association is proud to announce a successful hosting of the high-scale Business Morning with Mr. Vitaliy Zakharchenko, Head of the State Tax Service of Ukraine. The event continued the series of EBA regular topical breakfast seminars aimed specifically at business audience. Business Morning that brought together more than 200 senior executives, directors and managers of EBA member companies was designed to initiate the exchange of views and real-time discussion of the taxation sphere challenges directly with STS management. Among the keynote speakers and Business Morning chairs were Mr. Vitaliy Zakharchenko, Head of the State Tax Service of Ukraine, Mr. Sergey Lekar, Deputy Head of the State Tax Service of Ukraine and Mrs. Anna Derevyanko, EBA Executive Director. In the course of Business Morning the auditorium shared thoughts on rules and general practices of Ukraine’s tax governance, namely the VAT refund scheme and progress, pioneer horizontal monitoring project and cooperation between business and STS. During the first section of the event Mr. Vitaliy Zakharchenko highlighted the vectors of tax sphere development and long-term initiatives STS intends to introduce.

According to the statistics presented, refundable VAT already received by the taxpayers in 2011 amounted 21 milliard UAH, compared to 7.8 milliard UAH in 2010. Mr. Zakharchenko stated that the progress is also monitored within tax reporting procedures simplification and cited, that in 2011 taxpayers undergo 56% less state checks than in 2010. Despite such meaningful statistics, further modernisation of the taxation sphere is vital. Particular emphasis was given to the innovative horizontal monitoring project, aimed at promoting real-time close cooperation between tax authorities and major taxpayers. Mr. Zakharchenko stressed that tax authorities are committed to an open dialogue with the taxpayers and encourage feedback from country’s business community. One of the key messages voiced in the course of the event is the inspiring enthusiasm of STS management to counsel with business and receive a feedback on taxation initiatives and progresses. The EBA as the intermediary between business and tax authorities encourages business to speak up, address at the early stage the problems business faces and share tax-related concerns and ideas. We will further continue the series of business consultations with Ukraine’s tax officials in order to promote cooperation between business and government.

http://www.facebook.com/EBA.Ukraine


4 Opinion

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July 8, 2011

Editorials

Inhumane Rights Prisons are meant for the guilty. But in Ukraine – where it is legal to hold someone in pre-trial detention for up to 18 months – they have become a convenient dumping ground for everyone from asylum seekers to once influential government officials. From arrest to appeals, every step of the Ukrainian judicial system appears to be rife with human rights violations. Car batteries, heavy books and handcuffs were among the items the Ukrainian Helsinki Human Rights Union displayed in an anti-torture demonstration last week outside of the General Prosecutor’s office in response to widespread reports of abuse at the hands of Ukraine’s police. This week, two allies of opposition leader Yulia Tymoshenko – Anatoliy Makarenko and Taras Shepitko – were released after a year in pre-trial detention, and only after their lawyers argued that their health was deteriorating. They were two of the most high profile of the almost 40,000 suspects being held in pre-trial detention in Ukraine as of last year. Refugees receive similar treatment, including three Uzbek asylum seekers who have sat in crowded cells outside Kyiv for over a year awaiting extradition hearings. And it’s not just a matter of personal liberty. Prisons are overcrowded, unsanitary and lack adequate medical facilities, according to the U.S. State Department’s most recent human rights report. In such conditions, simply waiting for a hearing can become a death sentence. If anyone should be sympathetic it is Viktor Yanukovych. The President served two jail terms in Soviet days. But under his leadership, prison conditions remain abysmal while the ranks of those being held in protracted pre-trial detention grow. Even when a suspect reaches a courtroom, conditions do not improve – as we have been seeing in Yulia Tymoshenko’s trial. Late last month, EU ambassador to Ukraine Jose Manuel Pinto Teixeira called the stifling conditions in the former Prime Minister’s courtroom “inhumane.” And this is one of the best in Ukraine. Ukraine claims to have EU aspirations, but its stance on human rights more closely resembles Russia, where journalists, businessmen and dissidents are often held for years without trial or are sentenced on extremely questionable grounds. This week we were reminded of Sergei Magnitsky, a Russian lawyer who died in 2009 while in custody. A Russian human rights panel this week argued that his death was the fault of investigators and prison officials and reported that he was severely beaten in prison. Government officials have maintained that Magnitsky died of heart disease. If Ukraine wants to be respected as a democracy, it needs to clean up its criminal system on every level and ensure that only those truly guilty of crimes are treated as criminals. One obvious place to start is to minimize the circumstances and time suspects can be kept behind bars before trial.

Klitschko Power Wladimir Klitschko’s victory over David Haye on July 2 means that he and his brother, Vitali, hold all the meaningful heavyweight boxing world championships. These are two sons of Ukraine of whom all Ukrainians can rightfully be proud – and not only because of their sporting prowess. While the brash Brit David Haye was creating scandals before the bout by wearing a T-shirt depicting him holding the Klitschkos severed heads, Wladimir didn’t stoop to such a level. “It’s not funny. It’s below the line of stupid,” he said in an interview with Britain’s Guardian newspaper. There is much to admire in the brothers’ fighting attitude. Although it disappoints some fans, they enter every fight to win, whether that means putting on a show or not. For years they have honed their skills through dedication and effort, keeping in great shape and improving their technique. Outside the ring, they are great role models. They are fluent in four languages – Russian, Ukrainian, English and German – they hold doctorates in sports science, and they give back to Ukraine in politics, social initiatives and investments. The political ambitions of Vitali Klitschko, the leader of a political party, seem promising. Unlike with other political leaders, whose pasts are often shrouded in mystery, people know where his money came from and respect his achievements as a man who has become successful through his own talents, rather than through dubious business deals or nepotism. With the same dedication and single-mindedness he has shown in his boxing, and with the right team of advisers, Klitschko could become a force in politics to match his boxing power. If his brother joined in, perhaps they could jointly dominate Ukraine’s politics, deliver results for citizens and earn an even stronger base of fans.

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“So, any new products to boast of?”

“Well, mostly it’s the unemployed we produce at the moment.”

NEWS ITEM: Despite rosy official statistics, the nation’s blue-collar workers in industrial regions are having a tough time. The government reported a 5.3 percent growth in gross domestic product in the first quarter. However, around 2,000 workers were fired in May from Zaporizhia Ferroalloy Plant, which is owned by oligarch Ihor Kolomoisky’s Privat Group (see story on page 6). Illegal mines are flourishing in eastern parts of Ukraine (see story on page 7). The dismal economic situation is reflected in the president’s approval rating: 63 percent of people think the nation is going in the wrong direction, according to a recent poll by the Kyiv International Institute of Sociology.

Democracies remove politics from courts L EIGH TURNER

I first had the idea of writing about justice and politics in Ukraine in autumn 2009. At that time the campaign leading up to the presidential elections of February 2010 was in full swing. One presidential candidate made the campaign pledge that, if successful, he or she would ensure that another candidate stood trial for alleged misdeeds during his or her term of office. At that time I considered writing an Internet blog to say that such campaign promises were undesirable for several reasons: 1) It is the job of the court system, not of politicians, to decide who should be prosecuted; 2) The separation of powers is central to democracy. If the court system is not independent, people in power risk starting to believe they are above the law; the trust of people in the law and in their rulers is undermined; and investors take fright; and 3) If a culture develops where politicians routinely seek to prosecute their opponents once they have left office, this undermines democracy by making those in power reluctant to abandon it through the democratic process lest they, in turn, face prosecution later. In the event, other subjects came to the forefront and I never published the blog. And, it turned out, neither the politician promising to prosecute a former office-holder nor the former office-holder was successful in the 2010 presidential election. Fast-forward to 2011. Several senior office-holders from the former government are being prosecuted. A vigorous debate is taking place

Æ Any suggestion that these cases may be politically motivated is a matter of concern about whether these prosecutions are, as the authorities say, simply a matter of clamping down on corruption or are, as the opposition says, politically motivated. Clearly, any suggestion that any of these cases may be politically motivated is a matter of concern, as noted in a statement by the spokesperson of Catherine Ashton, the European Union's foreign policy chief, on 26 May, a comment issued by the British Embassy on 22 June and a comment by the U.S. State Department on 24 June. I have no views on the rights and wrongs of individual cases. And I have read with interest a list distributed by the authorities designed to show that many figures associated with the present government are being prosecuted in addition to members of the previous government. The authorities argue that the list shows that justice is indeed being applied evenly. The problem is that when corruption is widespread, whatever the facts of individual cases, prosecutions will always risk looking selective if only some people are prosecuted. And in a democracy, any prosecution of important figures from the political opposition will always, rightly, be the subject of particular scrutiny both inside the country and outside. Leigh Turner has been the British Ambassador to Ukraine since June 2008. You can read all his blog entries at blogs. fco.gov.uk/roller/turnerenglish (in English) or blogs.fco.gov.uk/ roller/turner/ (Ukrainian)

Feel strongly about an issue? Agree or disagree with editorial positions in this newspaper? The Kyiv Post welcomes letters to the editors and opinion pieces, usually 800 to 1,000 words in length. Please e-mail all correspondence to Brian Bonner, senior editor, at bonner@kyivpost.com or letters@kyivpost.com. All correspondence must include an e-mail address and contact phone number for verification.


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Opinion 5

July 8, 2011

Nation still far from European values

A protester prepares to hit riot police with a stick during clashes in Athens on June 29. Greece approved more austerity measures needed to avert default in a vote that calmed markets but triggered a second day of riots that left dozens injured and the capital blanketed with tear gas. (AP Photo/Petros Giannakouris)

no longer possible to shut off the aftershocks of events like bankruptcies of a country or a corporation. That’s the reason why the European Union and the International Monetary Fund are lending Greece 12 billion euros. And in return, it promises to live by its means. The Europeans talk a lot about why they have to stick together. “Even the big countries would be too small for the challenges. Only jointly can we solve them,” said Gunther Krichbaum, head of the European relations committee in the German parliament. A Union is needed to make sure than there is Airbus in the aviation industry, not just Boeing; to make sure that European Galileo can compete with American GPS in space; to be able to stand up to the global terrorism threats, including cyber-terrorism; to guarantee a strong position in gas negotiations with Russia. The list goes on. Because of the crisis in Greece, the Union will have to move to a new level. The economic policies of 27 European Union members will inevitably have to be more coordinated. On the other hand, this will be just a new stage in a long process. The introduction of the euro in 1999-2002 coordinated the monetary policies of European countries; then came various institutions and treaties. The 2009 Lisbon Treaty was one of them, replacing the neverborn Constitution.

One of the newest developments was the appointment of a European foreign minister, or, to be precise, the EU’s High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Catherine Ashton. She speaks with a single voice for all European nations. All this became possible precisely because of the common values that Buzek was talking about. They are the glue that keeps Europe together. Looking back at my own home, I ask myself whether Ukraine has enough of that glue to stick to the process of European integration declared by the majority of our politicians. The answer, of course, lies in our values. Here they are: political persecution of the opposition is commonplace, as is their rudeness to judges in court. The last remaining stronghold of free media, the Internet, is under siege by prosecutors and lawmakers. As far as the economy goes, many markets are being monopolized by people close to or in the government. Any questions? “The European idea has had better days. But its renaissance will be the brighter,” said German lawmaker Krichbaum. It's a shame that Ukraine will only see a glimpse of that shine from far away. Kyiv Post deputy chief editor Katya Gorchinskaya can be reached at gorchinskaya@kyivpost.com

Poland’s EU presidency offers hope for Ukraine’s integration WILLIAM SC H R E I B E R

Poland has just concluded its first week in its sixmonth presidency of the council of the European Union. While the presidency after the Lisbon Treaty has shrunk to more of an administrative responsibility than a leadership position, the Polish government has vocally and ambitiously used its presidential term to bring Europe’s attention eastward. For Ukraine this means a unique opportunity to reach a new understanding with Europe. For Poland, successfully mediating an agreement between Brussels and Kyiv could present an oppor-

WITH A ANASTASIA FORINA

Besides the Kyiv Post, what news sources do you find most reliable and why? Hennadiy Sedoi Financial specialist “I do not read print media. I usually go to the ukr.net [free email service] to get the news. It provides you with RSS feeds on various news topics including top stories from the most popular websites. You just click on a headline and get to the story you like. Regarding TV channels I prefer to watch Newsone.”

K AT YA G OR C H I N S K AYA

BERLIN – Last week, Europeans were trembling at the possibility that the doomsday scenarios would come true for them because of a massive crisis in Greece. Instead, Greece obediently voted for a series of laws that will allow it – at least temporarily – to fix up its economy and approve longer-term measures across the European Union. These measures inevitably mean greater integration of economic policies of different nations, which skeptics are already referring to as partial loss of sovereignty. As far as Ukraine goes, it means remaining sidelined for even longer. That’s not because Europe has its own economic and other problems and couldn’t care less about us. That’s because we’re so far away from sharing their values and thinking in European categories. The recent events in Greece, important as they are, impressed me much less than the arguments of some European leaders for the need to approve harsh, unpopular measures in the country in exchange for the no-less-unpopular bill paid by the rest of Europe to bail out its sick economy. To my great surprise, the arguments mostly rotated around values. It went without saying that economic and financial lessons needed to be learned from the crisis – for instance, automatic and tough consequences have to be introduced for the slightest deviation from European rules on budget deficits and inflation that countries are supposed to stick to, but often don’t. Jerzy Buzek, president of the European Parliament, talking in Berlin on June 28, kicked off his speech with the point that the Greek crisis is the most serious in the history of united Europe, and therefore the first thing Europeans need to do is go back to their fundamental values. First of all, it’s democracy. He talked about Egypt and Tunisia, where in the winter people come out onto the streets and were ready to risk everything for a chance to get democracy and rule of law. “They trust our values and our history,” he concluded. But democracy won’t feed your children, and that’s why his next thesis was that every European has to see its fruits on their table. And to achieve that, the least you need is to stick together and support Greece in tough times. “Can you be sure default will only affect Greece?” he asked. “When Lehman Brothers defaulted, the German economy shrank by 6 percent.” Lehman Brothers was an American bank, but the point Buzek and like-minded leaders tried to make was that the global economy is so integrated that it’s

VOX populili

tunity to make its presidency stand out. On the front page of its issue commemorating the presidency, Poland’s largest daily newspaper, Gazeta Wyborcza, put it in clear terms: “If we manage to revitalize the Eastern Partnership and push forward association talks with Ukraine, it will be the greatest success of our presidency.” “Ukraine is definitely on the presidency’s wish list,” said Kacper Chmielewski, spokesperson for Poland’s representation to Brussels. “If they take the appropriate steps, we’d like to see an association agreement.” Poland’s communist history and its successful implementation of economic and democratic reforms lend it a unique authority and expertise in discussions about EU enlargement. This is coupled with a sense of solidarity with other post-Communist nations – a desire to help them follow in Poland’s European footsteps – has popular support, even across the divisive lines of Polish politics. Za nasza i wasza Æ13

Æ ‘Ukraine is definitely on the presidency’s wish list.’ – Kacper Chmielewski, spokesperson for Poland’s representation to Brussels.

Dmytro Bugrov Musician “My friends are a great news source for me. I do not watch TV at all and do not buy any newspapers or magazines. I watch Magnolia TV, [a program about accidents and crime,] from time to time. I also do not search for news on the Internet. There is too much about politics on the web. Documentary films are the only good thing on the Internet.” Olga Koval Accountant “I do not have time to buy newspapers or magazines and prefer to read news online, usually on ukr.net. I’m used to it. It is very convenient. I also watch Ukrainian and world news daily on channel 1+1.” Vasyl Sydorov Pensioner “I visit political websites like pravda. com.ua, lb.ua and unian.net to get the information I’m interested in. But actually I read all the news between the lines as I do not consider the modern media to be a reliable source of information. I watch Channel 5 from time to time and do not buy any newspapers.” Natalia Pavlenko Student “I consider Novy Kanal and 1+1 channels to be the most reliable. I grew up watching these two. It is our family tradition. As for newspapers, I usually buy Segodnya. It provides a great mix of up-to-the-minute news with entertainment tips, including horoscopes, weather forecasts and other easy to read information. I do not search for news on the web.”


IN PARTNERSHIP WITH TNK-BP IN UKRAINE

6 Business

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July 8, 2011

Thousands in Zaporizhia out of work due to factory slowdowns BY Y U L I YA R A S K E VIC H RASKEVICH@KYIVPOST.COM

ZAPORIZHIA – After 15 years of working at an aluminum plant in the industrial city of Zaporizhia, Anatoly Legenchuk will spend this summer cultivating grapes. For Legenchuk, however, it wasn’t a lifestyle choice to leave behind the factory’s choking plumes of smoke. Like almost 6,000 others over the past five years, he lost his job at the plant in May, leaving him with an uncertain future in a city that was once an industrial hub, but has been crippled by the financial crisis that began in 2008. “Now I am growing grapes. But it is seasonal. If nothing changes, I’ll eventually have to collect bottles or clean streets,” said Legenchuk, 39, with desperation in his voice. Official government figures suggest Ukraine’s economy is rebounding from a 15 percent plunge in gross domestic product. GDP was up 5.3 percent in the first quarter and nationwide unemployment inched down slightly from 2.1 percent in April to 2 percent in May. But blue collar workers and average citizens in Zaporizhia say they don’t see or feel improvement. Rather, things are getting worse, they suggest. “There are no jobs in Zaporizhia,” Legenchuk said. The decline of Zaporizhia, a city of around 750,000 on the Dnipro River in southeastern Ukraine, has been hastened by a pincer movement of rising energy prices and falling demand for its main products: aluminum and steel. Two of the town’s four major factories – Zaporizhia Ferroalloy Plant and Zaporizhia Aluminum Smelter – have also suffered in recent years from failing to secure special tariffs for electricity. Critics accuse the government of favoritism in handing out the cheaper rates that can make or break a factory’s profitability. While the rest of Ukraine is also struggling, this city has been hit particularly hard by its over-reliance on Soviet-era heavy industry, with few small- and medium-sized businesses to pick up the slack as the major plants have laid off workers. In May, around 2,000 workers were fired from Zaporizhia Ferroalloy Plant, which is owned by oligarch Ihor Kolomoisky’s Privat Group; in the past half-decade,

Former workers of Zaporizhia Aluminum Smelter Anatoly Legenchuk (L) and Valery Sizov visit the plant in order to check whether there are any jobs, and if it is in operation. (Alexander Prilepa)

employees at the Zaporizhia Aluminum Smelter, owned by Russian aluminum giant RUSAL, dropped from 6,500 to 690. In Kitchkas district, home to plant workers, young men wander the streets from the early morning with beer bottles in hand. Valery Sizov, 40, is a former colleague of Legenchuk’s who was also laid off six months ago. He has worked in aluminum for 17 years – most of his working life – and now can’t find another job. He briefly found employment at the ferroalloy plant, but was fired after only a month when problems set in there, too. Serhiy Rybalko, head of the Aluminum Trade Union Committee, said the plant had failed to secure special cheap energy rates in 2005, and therefore couldn’t be competitive. Talks with the government of former Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko in 2009 failed to solve the problem, and the current government also has not offered concessions. The factories themselves, however, have hardly been modernized since Soviet times and are inefficient users of energy. Viktoria Peleshko, a spokeswoman

Æ Governments says economy rebounding, but unemployed Zaporizhians don’t feel or see the recovery for Zaporizhia Aluminum Smelter, said the plant had been loss-making for three years and that work at the plant had been frozen as no agreement had been reached with the government on electricity tariffs. She said the workers who had been laid off had received redundancy payments and had been offered jobs at plants in Russia. Neither Kolomoisky, owner of Zaporizhia Ferroalloy Plant, nor the plant’s top manager could be reached for comment. Zaporizhia governor Borys Petrov said the aluminum factory’s owner failed to fulfill promises to modernize the plant. Former workers find another target – current and former political leaders

and their oligarch backers. “The whole situation is about the Donetsk and Dnipropetrovsk mafia trying to divide up the country. As a result common people suffer,” Sizov said. President Viktor Yanukovych and his main backer Rinat Akhmetov, Ukraine’s richest man, forged their careers in the eastern industrial city of Donetsk, as did a number of other leading government officials. Kolomoisky, Tymoshenko and current Deputy Prime Minister Sergiy Tigipko hail from Dnipropetrovsk, a rival of Donetsk. Zaporizhia mayor Alexander Sin said the employment market had stabilized after large-scale job losses in 2008 and 2009. Sizov, however, said he hadn’t seen

any evidence of this. He has been offered a job as a locksmith on Hr 1,100 ($140) per month before tax, onethird of his wage at the plant. He is pinning his hopes on a revival of the plant. “We don’t care who is in power at plant. They need to decide faster and let us work. Winter is coming soon and we won’t be able to pay Hr 700 utility bills. How can we survive?” Sizov asked. The lack of prospects is leading to increasing unrest in a part of the country known for its stalwart support of President Yanukovych, who scored 71.5 percent of the city’s vote in the second round of last year’s presidential election. In early June, thousands of workers from the ferroalloy plant protested in the central square, just as aluminum workers had in 2009. They demanded an end to the firings and help from the government to solve their plants’ problems. No response came. Problems aren’t limited to these two factories. A mining plant in the nearby town of Polohiy was closed at the beginning of June, and Rybalko predicts this could hit the factories it supplied, including steel plants. But despite the city’s major problems, experts say a mass protest movement is unlikely to take off because of the fractured nature of those complaining. Other groups have taken to the streets in recent months to protest changes to tax and pension legislation, rising inflation and backsliding on democracy and media freedoms. “For a mass protest there should be something uniting social organization that should plan not only social demands to the government but also economic and political ones,” said Mykhailo Mischenko from the Razumkov Center, a Kyiv-based think tank. “For now I don’t see one.” The workers, meanwhile, are waiting in hope for the next election cycle. Not so that they can vote for a new government, but because they believe a way will be found to restart production as part of pre-election campaigning. “I believe that it will be much better when Yanukovych runs for a second term,” Sizov said. “As part of the campaign they will start the plant and we’ll have jobs.” Kyiv Post staff writer Yuliya Raskevich can be reached at raskevich@kyivpost. com

Forbes editor: Ukraine amongst world’s worst economies, not fulfilling enormous potential BY M A R K R AC H K E VYC H RACHKEVYCH@KYIVPOST.COM

Ukraine ranks as one of the world’s five worst economies, according to a senior editor at Forbes, the popular American business magazine. In his July 5 blog, Daniel Fisher rated Ukraine the fourth and Armenia, another post Soviet country, the second worst world economies based on a variety of macroeconomic indicators. Fisher used three-year average statistics for gross domestic product growth and inflation, including the International Monetary Fund’s 2012 estimates, as well as gross domestic

product per capita and the current account balance, a measure of whether the country is importing more than it exports. In all, Fisher ranked the world’s top-10 worst economies. Other countries that made it into his ranking include Madagascar, Jamaica, Guinea, Venezuela, Kyrgyzstan, Swaziland, Nicaragua and Iran. Eight of the 10 worst economies were also in the bottom quartile of countries in Transparency International’s Global Perceptions Index, including Ukraine, which ranked 134 out of 178 countries in 2010. “Ukraine has rich farmland and generous mineral resources and could

become a leading European economy,” the Forbes editor wrote. “Yet per-capita GDP ($3,483) trails far behind even countries like Serbia and Bulgaria,” he added. Fisher cited the U.S. State Department assertion that “complex laws and regulations, poor corporate governance, weak enforcement of contract law by courts, and particularly corruption” as factors checking Ukraine’s economic potential. Ukrainian government officials say the country’s economy is rebounding and on track to post about 5 percent GDP growth this year following a whopping 15 percent economic contraction during the 2009 global

recession. But experts say wealth in the country is highly concentrated in the hands of a small group of oligarchs as another year of double digit inflation pinches the pockets of struggling citizens. Corruption and paralyzing bureaucracy continues to choke competition, small businesses and keeps badly needed investment at bay. Fisher cited Transparency International’s director of research and knowledge who said that “corruption extends to economic development” and “where government doesn’t work, economies don’t grow.” Kyiv Post staff writer Mark Rachkevych can be reached at rachkevych@kyivpost. com

10 worst economies 1

Madagascar

2

Armenia

3

Guinea

4

Ukraine

5

Jamaica

6

Venezuela

7

Kyrgyzstan

8

Swaziland

9

Nicaragua

10

Islamic Republic of Iran

Source: Forbes


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July 8, 2011

Business 7

IN PARTNERSHIP WITH TNK-BP IN UKRAINE

Illegal mines profitable, but at massive cost to nation BY K AT E RY N A PA N OVA PANOVA@KYIVPOST.COM

SNIZHNE, Donetsk Oblast – Even before you leave the road leading out of this small town in Ukraine’s heavily industrialized Donetsk Oblast, the coal dust sparkling on the roadside hints that something untoward is going on behind the trees. Behind a sign declaring private property, beyond three barking guard dogs, lies an inconspicuous hole in the ground, around one meter in diameter, reinforced by wooden logs and covered by a metal sheet. A little further on, a teenager uses a cable to hoist a man from another hole along with bathtubs full of coal. This is one of 115 such illegal mines working in Donetsk region, according to local authorities, where miners descend under the cover of night to risk their lives to haul up coal, tempted by the offer of higher wages. Oleksiy, a miner in his forties who emerged from the hole with his face smudged black, said he used to work 12-hour shifts at one of Ukraine’s 100plus legally operating mines, but started work here after payment of his salary was severely delayed for several months. “I have a family and hungry kids. Now here I have quick money, work eight hours per day and receive my salary every four days,” said Oleksiy, refusing to give his surname as he feared losing his job. Monthly salaries can reach up to Hr 7,000, compared with an average of Hr 4,250 for a legally operating mine. Working in an illegal coal mine may pay relatively well, but it is extremely dangerous, with no proper equipment, safety precautions or insurance. Unlike deep underground mines, most of the “holes,” as they are commonly known, are close to the surface, making the coal easier to mine. Donetsk police said they had closed 55 illegal mines in the region just this year, filling them with sand and other materials. But new ones are constantly opening up and closed ones dug out. No one can say for sure how many illegal mines are in operation in Ukraine. Sergiy Dergunov, acting governor of Donetsk Oblast, said 300 such holes were closed in 2010. Mykhailo Volynets, head of the independent trade union for coal miners and an opposition politician, said there are many more. Volynets speculated that the illegal mines in eastern Ukraine could have a cumulative turnover of around Hr 2 billion per year.

Miners work at illegal mines in Donetsk Oblast under the cover of darkness using rudimentary equipment, such as bath tubs, and with limited safety apparatus. (Photos by Alex Furman)

The business is profitable. A team of two miners and a winch-man is paid Hr 120 per ton of coal produced, which could be sold for up to Hr 800 per ton. Volynets and some of the workers said the mines are managed by criminal groups given cover by local politicians and law enforcers, although no one is prepared to name names. Donetsk police also said state officials are often involved in managing illegal coal production: Out of 89 criminal cases on mining opened by police in 2011, 10 of them involve state officials. Mine workers are rarely charged, but they face a far graver danger – serious injury or death. Since Ukraine became independent in 1991, 5,800 people have died in legal mines. The figure for unregulated illegal holes is unknown. According to the Donetsk authorities, four men died in illegal mines in 2010 and 2011. Volynets said that at least 12 people are killed every month, but are often registered as having died from

Miners hand over safety equipment after their shift at Pavlogradvuhilia, a legal mine run by Ukraine’s largest energy holding DTEK.

cardiac arrest, rather than methane poisoning. Others are seriously hurt. Ilya, a 32-year-old from a family of miners in Nova Zhdanovka, suffered from face and eye burns in a methane leak at the illegal mine where he worked. His employer, unusually, is supporting him while he can’t work. “Others would say, ‘Why the heck do we need you?’” he said. In his last job, he wasn’t so lucky. He lost a finger while working and was unpaid while he couldn’t work. Law enforcers are overwhelmed in the fight against illegal mines. In Mayak, around one hour from Donetsk, large open-cast mines used to begin work around 5 p.m. and continue through the night, until they were recently closed by the authorities. Lidya, a local neighborhood watch representative, said the huge excavated areas pose dangers for local children, who could fall down an unprotected drop of up to 50 meters, and have left nowhere for cows to graze.

Ilya almost lost his sight after a methane leak in an illegal mine.

Neighborhood watch representative Lidya points to a huge hole in a field in Mayak village made by excavations that she said poses a danger to children.

Police and the authorities in Donetsk said they know about Mayak, but said that closing even a one-meter hole is complicated, as it’s not clear who should fund it. “The sites of illegal mining are physically there, and that gives the criminals the opportunity to continue their illegal activity any time and with no substantial expenses,” said Oleg Perigok, head of the economic crimes division for the Donetsk Oblast police. Worse, Ukrainian taxpayers are sponsoring this illegal activity through subsidized coal prices, because of the unprofitability of the mining sector as a whole. In 2010, the cost of mining one ton of coal was Hr 807, but the purchase price was Hr 627. The difference is reimbursed to the mines from the country’s budget. A way out of this stalemate might be legalizing the illegal holes, thus providing some control and better work conditions for their employees. Privatizing the 120 state-owned mines could also prove to be an effective way

to improve their financial performance, resulting in fewer salary delays and fewer employees leaving for illegal mines in search for better pay. There are 146,000 miners registered as working in Donetsk Oblast. Pavlogradvuhilia mines, owned by Ukraine’s largest energy holding DTEK, a part of oligarch Rinat Akhmetov’s System Capital Management group, offer miners a salary of almost Hr 8,000 per month, stringent safety conditions and some social benefits, such as cheap holidays. Every miner uses a piece of equipment that warns of any dangerous concentrations of methane in the air. This apparatus could have protected Ilya, who ended up with burns after a methane leak at an illegal mine. But those that operate the illegal mines don’t want to spend money on such equipment, as that would dent the sizable profit they have miners dig up from the deadly holes. Kyiv Post staff writer Kateryna Panova can be reached at panova@kyivpost.com


8 Business

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July 8, 2011

Ukraine opens door to energy majors K Y I V P O S T S TA F F

Ukraine is stepping up efforts to attract billion-dollar investments and expertise from the world’s largest energy companies, hoping they can diversify energy supplies for an economy that is being squeezed by increasingly expensive fuel imports from its main supplier, Russia. On July 6, Ukraine’s government formally launched a tender in which it asked potential investors to prepare feasibility studies on construction of the nation’s first liquefied natural gas plant. Given that Ukraine has long kept major energy investors out, skepticism runs high that current plans could not materialize. Vladyslav Kaskiv, head of Ukraine’s State Agency for Investment and National Projects, put aside such concerns, saying: “We plan to choose an investor by the end of this year.” The announcement comes as Ukraine’s government also calls inves-

Æ Alternative energy sources could help break dependence on Russia tors in to unearth potentially large shale gas reserves. Sources said Royal Dutch Shell, Chevron, ExxonMobil and TNK-BP are among companies eyeing exploration and production licenses. Weeks ago, parliament adopted legislation on production sharing agreements set by them as a precondition for investing. Late last month, Deputy Energy Minister Vadym Chuprun said that “ExxonMobil, Halliburton, ConocoPhillips, Shell and other companies” have “responded” positively to Ukraine’s proposal for them to invest into exploration ventures. “According to U.S. Geological Survey studies, we have at least 1.5-2.5 trillion

ÆOn the move BRYAN DISHER joined the Kyiv-based practice of PwC, one of the world’s so-called Big Four accounting and auditing giants, as a partner and assurance services leader. Before moving to Ukraine from Vancouver, Disher served as the managing partner of the Ottawa office of PwC and as chair of PwC Canada's partnership board. He has more than 30 years' experience in accounting consultancy, assurance and financial management for both private, publicly listed companies and governments. He has led more than 50 public share offerings. Industries served include metals, mining and exploration, software, green energy, biotechnology, retail, agriculture, food processing and distribution, brewing, investment management and transportation. Disher is a fellow of the Canadian Institute of Chartered Accountants and Institute of Chartered Accountants of British Columbia. He is a specialist in U.S. GAAP and International Financial Reporting Standards.

cubic meters of shale gas. This number is approximate and will obviously grow,” Chuprun added. The reserves are believed to be located in two major pockets: near Ukraine’s border with Poland and the east. If untapped, these gas fields, along with offshore prospects on Ukraine’s Black Sea coast, could significantly diversify national energy supplies, cutting into purchases from Russia’s Gazprom. Ukraine is currently Gazprom’s largest customer, importing between 40-50 billion cubic meters of gas annually in recent years. Ukraine, long dependent on Russia for fuel, is seeking new supplies after its north-

Vladyslav Kaskiv

ern neighbor quadrupled prices since 2004. Referring to the liquefied natural gas project and the potential of shale gas development in Ukraine as well as nearby Poland, Kaskiv said: “These

projects could help Europe at large diversify energy supplies and get energy at more competitive prices.” The world’s largest energy companies have long eyed opportunities in Ukraine, but local officials have largely kept them out, preserving control over the domestic energy sector in the hands of oligarchs and Russian groups. But now, Ukraine is expressing a “clear intention to open up the energy sector to reputable international companies,” according to Jorge Zukoski, President of the American Chamber of Commerce in Ukraine. “We are talking about multibillion investments,” Zukoski said. Late last month, TNK-BP said it alone planned to invest $1.8bn in Ukraine shale gas exploration. “We hope to see the first tender announcement by the end of this year,” Zukoski said adding that the arrival of international energy groups could “create a better geopolitical positioning” for Kyiv and become a “revenue booster” for cash-strapped state coffers.

Send On the Move news to otm@kyivpost.com or contact Oksana Faryna at 234-6500. Items should include a photograph of the individual who has recently been appointed to a new position, a description of their duties and responsibilities, prior experience as well as education. Note: The Kyiv Post does not charge for publishing these notices or any news material.

TAMARA LUKANINA joined

MAKSYM USLISTYI joined

Asters, a Kyiv-based law firm, as an associate partner within the group’s banking, finance and securities practice. Lukanina boasts more than 20 years of experience in corporate, business, tax and labor law. Before joining Asters, she served as legal advisor in the Ukrainian Ministry of Justice and worked as a general counsel to major Ukrainian enterprises, such as Electronmash and Ukrtelecom. Lukanina won several precedent-setting cases in Ukrainian commercial and administrative courts. She has also been heavily involved in developing areas of Ukrainian law involving hydrocarbon regulation, space and telecommunications. She has drafted legislation which has been adopted by parliament. Lukanina is a graduate of Kyiv State University Law School.

YULIA BORODINA was

the Kyiv offices of AstapovLawyers, a leading Ukrainian law firm, as an associate in the group’s mergers, acquisitions, corporate and antitrust practices. Prior to joining AstapovLawyers, Uslistyi worked as a senior associate at Ukraine’s Paritet law firm, D&U Partners LLC, and as tax and legal consultant at Ernst & Young Ukraine. Uslistyi obtained a master’s degree in law from National University of Kyiv Mohyla Academy and is in the processing of obtaining an LLM degree in law from Queen Mary School of Law (University of London).

appointed head of the banking and financial services department for Smart Solutions, a recruitment agency operating in Ukraine. Borodina will focus on providing a full range of recruitment services and developing a closer working relationship with banks, insurance companies, investment funds, leasing and rental companies, audit and consulting firms. Borodina has over five years' experience within the recruitment industry. Prior to joining Smart Solutions, she worked in various human resources functions in Nadra Bank and Universal Bank, and before that was a human resources manager at Golden Staff, an HR company. Borodina graduated from Zaporizhia National University where she earned a dual degree in psychology and political science.

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Editor’s Note: Business Sense is a feature in which experts explain Ukraine’s place in the world economy and provide insight into doing business in the country. To contribute, contact senior editor Brian Bonner at bonner@kyivpost.com

WITH WITH CLIVE WOODGER

Better branding strategy could help many in Ukraine Creating value in real estate isn’t all about the numbers. While finance directors are comfortable talking about rental yield, property valuations, construction and maintenance costs, they find evaluating the worth of brands more challenging. The physical is easier to understand than the intangible. This is a problem particularly in Ukraine, where developers tend to ignore the crucial role of branding in a real estate project. Ukraine is an increasingly competitive market, but developers are failing to react by investing in strategic branding approaches. I was reminded of this current developer blind spot when asked last year to join a panel of judges reviewing latest and planned shopping centers in Ukraine. They asked for my views on branding and architecture for the eight centers involved. My immediate reaction was the absence of any clear branding strategy and concept virtually in all cases. Similarly, the center buildings presented could not be ranked as architecture if your definition is the creation of buildings which are an attractive addition to the environment and a pleasure to visit and experience. There was little attempt to build on a name and image to create a real sense of a special destination and a distinctive center theming. Typically exteriors were simply facades covered in tenant brand signs and interiors devoid of any attempt at customer communication and personality. If forced to name names, Sky Mall has modern contemporary interior but no recognizable brand and communication strategy. Externally, despite its potentially great location facing the river, there has been no attempt to build an attractive architectural landmark – simply an anonymous concrete structure covered with random tenant signs. Sky Mall is potentially a powerful name if developed as a distinctive theme but there appears no attempt to create a real personality and reputation as a great first-choice location in Kyiv. Names are a starting point not an end point and I noted some pleasant possibilities – Riviera, Komod,

Business 9

July 8, 2011

Æ Adoption of empty brands can come back to haunt Festival, Lubava for example, whereas others were impenetrable like Global UA. This clear gap in developer aspirations and priorities and the poor understanding of what makes an attractive long-term destination brand are regrettable. The reality is, however, when there is more competition, having simply a large trading building in a prime spot will no longer be enough. The consumer is king, and adopting a customercentric approach is where developers and real estate professionals have to catch up and embrace the true value and potential of effective branding to best meet their investors’, stakeholders’ and customers’ demand for added value. A simple test of a company’s customer focus is whether the marketing director, if there is one, is on the main board. Often there is only a manager not a director which immediately indicates the value placed on the role of marketing and branding. Developing a brand requires coordinating its development through marketing and public relations – sadly, difficult department activities to defend when executives are asking for numbers to demonstrate performance and return on investment. This is ironic in today’s world of brand-led commercial activity. While it is accepted that Coca Cola’s major financial valuation is based on its brand equity rather than its physical assets, the same logic is rare in real estate development. Ultimately, all value is based on attaining maximum sales. A shopping

center that attracts the best tenants and enjoys the highest visitor purchases creates the optimum capital value. What drives this? A center’s visitor experience. Every touch point creates the potential brand perception – the image and reputation required to sustain and improve repeats visits and optimum tenant turnovers. The architecture, visitor journey – digital and physical – and culture of the centre’s staff and management all directly contribute to the destination brand experience – the centre’s brand equity and capital value. Architects are the first people who need to understand this principle for new centers if branding is not to be reduced to cosmetic packaging and marketing activity. The architecture, planning and environment of a centre are the most expensive and long-term aspects of creating venue’s distinctive character and profile. Accountants understand commercialization – the income producing activities apart from rentals. But unfortunately this is often viewed as simply an operationally based sales opportunity, selling space and activities to the highest bidder. This results in elevations covered with uncontrolled tenant signs and advertising, screens full of indiscriminate advertising and malls jammed with poorly planned kiosks. The result is frequently a potential total disconnect between strategic longer-term brand equity development and short-term tactical promotion to drive footfall and sales. Achieving an effective balance is vital if hard-won reputation is not to be lost overnight with inappropriate image-diluting initiatives. As the number of shopping malls in Ukraine continues to rise, competition will heat up. The ones that will succeed are those that embrace the idea that while numbers matter, they ultimately depend on the success of the brand that underpins sales. Clive Woodger is director at SCG London, a British brand agency and consultancy based in London. He can be reached at clive@scglondon.com.

In case you missed them, read the last five Business Sense columns by experts online at kyivpost.com July 1 with Anton Khmelnitski, managing director of Kyiv-based Elbrus Capital: “Nation’s risky market curbs great agriculture potential”

June 24 with Brad Wells, corporate governance and political analyst at Concorde Capital: “Local financial market culture ignores carrot, needs more stick” June 17 with Ron Barden and Slava Vlasov: “Repeal of tax exemptions on services to affect many”

June 10 with Oksana Polhuy researching the consequences of hydrofracking at DePauw University in Indiana: “Hydrofracking for shale gas stirs environmental worries” June 3 with Mark Khavkin and Christian Schuller: “Collecting debts could help unlock lending”

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Business Mistakes Which May Result in the Raiding Seizure

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owadays it is not a secret that the raiding seizures have become a ‘common phenomenon’ and ‘rather a business rule’ than an exception to the same. This issue is pressing both for the national companies and foreign investors. The comments on this topic were provided to us by Natalia Osadcha the Partner of Syutkin and Partners Firm of Attorneys, partner Natalia Osadcha. To start with, I’d like to consider the notion of the ‘raiding seizure’. Raiding seizure is an illegal seizure of real estate, corporate rights, and/or intellectual property objects by the other business entities, individuals and public authorities. As the experience shows, it is the pubic authorities which play the major role in implementation of the raiding seizure schemes. It is hard to classify the seizure schemes in view of their great diversity, from the commonplace seizure of an average company by its director and President to the well-planned seizure of big real estate objects and land with the help of the public and law-enforcement bodies. What is common to these cases and which mistakes are made by the owners of business which were subjected to illegal seizure, since far not all companies become the subject of seizure? Firstly, it is necessary not to neglect the seemingly insignificant events, which can be the forerunners or grounds for illegal seizure. The experience shows, the following events may become the basis of the raiding seizure: 1. Issue of the general powers of attorney to the third parties for attending of the general meetings of LLC members/joint stock companies’ shareholders (without limitation of the representative’s power to certain legal actions). 2. Issue of promissory notes by the company, at which the facility is registered. 3. Neglecting of inspection reports issued by the controlling/prosecutor's bodies establishing the fact of illegal actions of the company at which the facility is registered. 4. Failure to re-execute the title-establishing documents to the facility and/or constituent documents (the company name is not changed; the new certificate is not obtained etc.) 5. Conclusion of the premise lease agreement on behalf of the building owner providing for the lessee’s right to make improvements. 6. Existence of insignificant debts to the contractors. 7. Initial privatization of the real estate object and/or redemption of the facility from public authorities or local self-administration bodies. 8. Assignment of a part of the corporate rights of the company at which the facility was registered to the third parties (directors, president etc.)

it is the pubic authorities which play the major role in implementation of raiding seizure schemes. Secondly, one shouldn’t neglect the high-quality legal accompaniment at the facility acquisition stage. The skilled lawyer can draw its conclusion on the legal risks and their eventual negative impact and present its suggestions regarding their minimization at the early stages already. Otherwise, the customer may obtain a conclusion on impossibility to purchase a certain facility because of the high risk inherent to it. Certainly, the final decision is always made by the investor, but at least this decision is conscious and informed, taking into account all pros and contras. Thirdly, you should reasonably assess the situation formed in Ukraine with regard to illegal seizure of the property objects and not think that you will never face it. It doesn’t mean that there is no business opportunity in Ukraine at all. Contrarily, Ukraine is an attractive country for foreign investors due to its dynamically developing market economy. However, for successful conducting of business in Ukraine it is required to take special steps for investment protection yet before the eventual occurrence of issues. Besides, the ‘legal prevention’ costs are incomparably less than those incurred by the owner during active defense against seizure. Our company developed special types of legal services aimed at prevention of the raiding seizure, such as the legal analysis of the business/investment objects for detection of illegal seizure risks, development of the risk minimization schemes and their direct implementation. Certainly, there is no all-purpose protective measure suitable for everyone; they are developed individually based on the realities and current legal position of the client. However, I may state that any big deal related to acquisition/privatization of property needs continuation from the prospective of illegal seizure risks management. Leaving the deal 'as is’, the investor is running a risk of loosing the facility due to the change of the public authorities’ position and/ or competitors’ proactive actions. I’d like to give an example from our practice. One of our clients who redeemed the facility (a land lot) from the local council, having paid a significant amount for its acquisition, faced the issues after the prosecutor's office 'concluded’ that the facility had been purchased in breach of regulations of the Land Code of Ukraine. Such position of the prosecutor's office was expressed in the claim for invalidation of the land sale and purchase agreement. Meanwhile the issue of restitution (repayment of funds) to the investor wasn’t raised at the proceedings at all. However, even if the court had awarded the repayment of funds to the investor, the enforcement of such award would have been impossible because of the lack of funds with the local council. Between acquisition of land by the client and appearance of ‘issues’ in the form of illegal seizure more than 3 years have passed and if the above client timely took steps for minimization of legal risks inherent to the deal, he wouldn't have faced such issues. In any case, I’d like to draw your attention to the fact that timely detection of illegal seizure risks is the ‘prevention’ of eventual troubles and pledge of success of any business.


10 News

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July 8, 2011

Klitschko brothers still fighting to be seen as greats

“This is Dr. Steelhammer. You called?”

BY J A ME S M A R S ON an d KO S T YA D OV G AN MARSON@KYIVPOST.COM, DOVGAN@KYIVPOST.COM

After Wladimir Klitschko comprehensively outpointed Britain’s David Haye on July 2, the Ukrainian boxer and his elder brother, Vitali, made boxing history. At more than six-feet-six inches tall, the towering boxing duo are the first brothers to jointly hold all four major versions of the world heavyweight title. Praise flooded in, including from the vanquished Haye: “He’s the best fighter on the planet right now.” The brothers now have fearsome records. Wladimir has 56 wins, 49 by knockout, against three defeats. Vitali has won 42 bouts, knocking out 39 opponents. He suffered only two defeats, forced to withdraw once with an injury and once with a cut while leading on points. Wladimir, 35, and his older brother Vitali, 39, are both well-spoken, fluent in four languages, doctors of sports science, and thoroughly decent and likeable characters. But despite the brothers’ dominance of the sport’s blue-ribbon division over the past several years, which shows no sign of waning, some boxing aficionados remain unconvinced that they can be counted as true legends of the sport, up there with the likes of Mohammed Ali, Joe Frazier and George Foreman. Critics say they are robotic, avoid risks and simply don’t have the same razzamatazz of former champions like Ali. “The Klitschko brothers are great boxers but they are boring. They don’t take risks. You’ve got to go for it in this sport, and give 100 per cent,” legendary trainer Freddie Roach told Britain’s Daily Telegraph newspaper. The defeat of Haye, who was the WBA champion and widely considered the best non-Klitschko heavyweight, was typical of the brothers’ recent

NEWS ITEM. British boxer David Haye blamed a broken toe for his defeat by Wladimir Klitschko on July 2. Klitschko said the injury looked more like a bee sting but that he was “no doctor.” Klitschko is a doctor of sports science, not medicine, and goes by the nickname of Dr. Steelhammer.

World Heavyweight Champion Lennox Lewis rocks Vitali Klitschko with a right hand during his victory in Los Angeles on June 21, 2003. The fight was stopped by the referee after the sixth round. Lewis won by technical knockout, although Klitschko was winning on points at the time. (AFP PHOTO)

Æ Lack of quality opponents damages fighters’ legacy victories. Wladimir kept the shorter Haye at a distance, jabbing his way to victory. Even when it became clear that the Briton had little in his armory to cause concern, he failed to take the fight forward and seriously damage his opponent. It was supposed to be the fight to reignite heavyweight boxing. Haye, a

trash-talking Londoner with a big right hand, had promised fireworks despite making his name at the lighter cruiserweight. His failure to offer a significant threat to Klitschko means he also bears responsibility for the lackluster fight (he later blamed a broken toe for his performance). Haye’s inability to live up to expectations encapsulates one of the Klitschkos’ main impediments to becoming alltime legends of the sport – the dearth of quality opponents. Fighters are judged by whom they beat and the brothers have been unfortunate that they have no other stars to test their mettle. The names of recent opponents Eddie Chambers, Albert Sosnowski and even Samuel Peter will not reverberate down the ages. Some experts, such as legendary heavyweight Larry Holmes, said part of the problem is that big, strong athletes in the U.S. prefer to go into football, basketball or baseball. Wladimir in particular has been crit-

icized before for not finishing weaker opponents, such as Sultan Ibragimov in his last fight in the United States. The problem for many boxing fans is that they want to see a show, rather than a sport. The Klitschkos are powerful, technically gifted boxers who have developed a fighting style that allows them to dominate opponents and makes them difficult to hit. They fight to win. The lack of quality opponents and the brothers' conservative fighting styles means that none of their bouts can match up with tussles from the past, such as Frazier versus Ali or Riddick Bowe versus Evander Holyfield. But they are unapologetic. “The first thing I learned in boxing is to not get hit. That’s the art of boxing. Execute your opponent without getting hit. In sports school we were putting our hands behind our backs and having to defend ourselves with our shoulders, by rolling, by moving round the ring, moving our feet. I’ve knocked out 49 guys so far in 55 wins. That record speaks for itself,” Wladimir said recently. The Ukrainian boxers face another problem. They are simply too nice and

don’t do anything controversial. They don’t talk trash like Ali, or bite another fighter’s ear like Mike Tyson. Vitali will face Pole Tomasz Adamek on Sept. 10, a fighter who, like Haye, made his name in a lower weight division. The Klitschkos’ manager, Bernd Boente, told the BBC last week that Vitali could fight Haye later this year or at the beginning of next year. As Vitali and Wladimir enter the latter stage of their careers, it’s possible they will not get to face an opponent who can challenge them in their prime. One bout that would get fans excited is Klitschko versus Klitschko. But a bloody clash between the brothers seems unlikely. “We would have to talk to our mother again,” Wladimir said in an interview with The Ring magazine in 2009. “We know how much interest this fight would create and it would mean that one of us would be the supreme heavyweight champion. Of course our mother would not be very happy.” Kyiv Post Editor James Marson and Sports Editor Kostya Dovgan can be contacted at marson@kyivpost.com and dovgan@kyivost.com

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News 11

July 8, 2011

Police spark fresh media freedom fears in demanding Internet news sites reveal server information BY S V I T L A N A T U C H YN S KA TUCHYNSKA@KYIVPOST.COM

Law enforcers demanded that two of the country’s leading Internet news websites, Ukrainska Pravda and Korrespondent.net, reveal information from their servers, raising concerns among journalists and experts of increased pressure from the authorities on the country’s already-embattled media. Police opened a criminal investigation on June 25 after pro-presidential lawmaker Inna Bohoslovska submitted a complaint about threats to her life that allegedly appeared in reader comments on the websites. Bohoslovska is an outspoken critic of opposition leader Yulia Tymoshenko who often accuses her rival of treason in gas deals she made while prime minister in 2009. She heads a provisional parliamentary investigative commission into the deal with Russia, for which Tymoshenko is currently on trial for abuse of power. According to Bohoslovska, threats against her were published online on many websites in the comments section under articles where readers can offer their views. One of the comments allegedly contained the suggestion to “soak [Bohoslovska] in gasoline and set [her] on fire”. Journalists said both Bohoslovska and police are overreacting. “Knowing the nature of Internet comments, we think that comments like that are rather an expression of emotions and not a real threat. Unfortunately, the level of Internet comments, as the level of communication in politics, is far from perfect in Ukraine,” said Yulia McGuffie, editor of Korrespondent.net. Korrespondent.net is one of the country’s leading sources of news. Ukrainska Pravda is one of Ukraine’s top websites for investigative journalism. Since President Viktor Yanukovych entered office in February 2010, journalists have reported increased pressure to toe the official line. Serhiy Leshchenko, a leading journalist from Ukrainska Pravda who was questioned by prosecutors on June 30, said he is surprised the online comments were treated so seriously. “There are many offensive comments online, including to my stories. Some comments contain threats to different people, including politicians. But the police don’t open criminal investigations into all those cases and nobody really takes it so seriously,” he said. Leshchenko said he is concerned police might use the case to justify the removal of Ukrainska Pravda’s servers, or get an inside glimpse into who is reading the site which regularly in its investigative reporting reveals corruption by top officials. Vitaliy Moroz, an expert at media watchdog Internews Ukraine, noted that all recent server actions focused on Ukraine’s most critical and popular Internet media. “It is hard to say how serious these actions are yet and how far will the police go. But the fact is that if media

Pinchuk gives $500,000 for 19 students to study abroad Viktor Pinchuk, Ukraine’s fourth richest man, has for the second year awarded grants to send 19 students to the world’s best universities. An industrialist who built up a multi-billion-dollar business empire while his father-in-law, Leonid Kuchma, served as president, Pinchuk spent about $500,000 on the grants this year. “This event reminds me of launching astronauts into space,” said Pinchuk (right) during a June 29 award ceremony that took place at Kyiv’s SkyArt café. “I hope you will land well in Ukraine,” he added. Students chosen (left) will this September start studying law, public governance, ecology and agriculture in prestigious schools of the U.S. and Europe. They are required to come back and work in Ukraine for at least five years after completion of studies. (Anastasia Vlasova)

Protests break out ahead of key pension legislation vote Æ1 to IMF financing soon could Investigators want to probe the Internet servers to top Ukrainian news portals to find out who left threatening comments about an ally of President Viktor Yanukovych, lawmaker Inna Bohoslovska (above).

trigger a downgrade of the country’s credit rating at a time when the government needs to borrow on financial markets to refinance earlier debts. The reform bill would gradually raise the retirement age for women to 60 from 55. Hours before parliament was to vote on the legislation, thousands of people marched through central Kyiv and rallied outside parlia-

ment, holding banners that read “No to reforms at the expense of life.” Protesters included trade union activists and oppositionists galvanized by the trial of former Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko, Yanukovych’s fiercest political rival, who is charged with abuse of power. “We will do our best to stop this pension genocide,” said Andriy Pavlovsky, a lawmaker allied with Tymoshenko. Though individual pensions are

relatively low at about $140 a month on average, total pension expenditure amounted to 18 percent of Ukraine’s gross domestic product in 2009, one of the highest rates in Europe. Critics of the reform argue that raising the retirement age is inhumane in a country with relatively low life expectancy. Members of parliament said discussion of the bill could last until late on July 7 or continue on July 8.

Russia concerns keep EU keen on Kyiv engagement Æ1 members of the former govern-

One of Ukraine’s top investigative reporters, Serhiy Leshchenko (above), was questioned by Ukrainian prosecutors on June 30 in connection with comments posted on his www. pravda.com.ua news site.

speak up about pressure it means they are under more pressure than usual,” he said. Volodymyr Polishchuk, a spokesman for Kyiv’s Internal Affairs Ministry, said police have the right to remove servers in order to access information about people leaving comments. “But I do not know if this will be considered necessary. Of course nobody wants a scandal,” he added. Another news website that had criticized the current authorities – Donetsk-based Ostrov – said police are also accessing its server. According to editor Serhiy Harmash, Ostrov`s provider confirmed they received a request from police regarding their servers. Donetsk police refused to reveal details, but said the actions are being taken in connection with a criminal investigation. “We don’t know anything about any criminal cases and we still have no idea what is being done to our servers,” Harmash said. Kyiv Post staff writer Svitlana Tuchynska can be reached at tuchynska@kyivpost.com.

ment of Ukraine.” Fuele was referring to a growing number of investigations into Tymoshenko and her political camp launched by Yanukovych-loyal prosecutors. U.S. and EU officials have repeatedly raised concerns. The trials are quickly becoming a litmus test for Yanukovych’s democratic credentials. “If this process [of criminal investigation into Ukraine’s opposition leaders] is perceived to be political, it will have an impact on bilateral relations,” said an EU diplomat in Brussels. The diplomat declined to elaborate on what measures could be taken. But sources said the West, specifically the EU, is not likely to punish Kyiv at this point by limiting engagement. Policymakers fear that a policy of isolation would only tilt Ukraine back into the orbit of Moscow. Earlier this week, the European Union’s ambassador to Ukraine, Jose Manuel Pinto Teixeira, indicated that although concerns are growing, Yanukovych’s administration had not yet crossed the point of no return. He suggested that Brussels sought to continue with a policy of engagement, saying that the Tymoshenko case would not threaten ongoing talks on association and free trade agreements between Kyiv and the 27-nation bloc. “We do not link these two processes,” said Teixeira, who showed up for the first day hearings in the Tymoshenko case to express his concern. Yanukovych and his government have consistently reiterated that

European integration is their top priority, even as relations with neighboring Russia have soured over the price of energy imports. Both Ukraine and the EU insist they are keen to conclude negotiations on association and free trade agreements this year. Analysts and European diplomats said integration would continue, as Europe tries to draw Ukraine from Russia’s grasp and pull the nation back toward democracy. But critics say that the trial of Yanukovych’s main rival Tymoshenko, which could see her jailed for up to 10 years if convicted, should make the EU think twice about signing up to closer ties. Writing in the Kyiv Post last month, a group of respected Western and Ukrainian analysts, including Nico Lange, director of Germany’s Konrad Adenauer Foundation in Ukraine, and Edward Chow, a senior fellow at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, called on the EU to take a time out in relations with Kyiv. “There is a contradiction between the EU’s hurry to sign a free-trade deal and Ukraine’s move away from European values,” they warned. The EU is itself at a critical moment, with some members, such as Greece, wracked by debt crises that threaten to overwhelm their economies. It is far from a homogenous group, analysts said, and it would take a serious violation of democratic norms to cajole it into any action against Ukraine. Diplomats in Kyiv and some analysts argue that drawing Ukraine in closer will allow the EU to push

harder on the democracy issue. “The association agreement with the EU will bring Ukraine closer to Europe. It will give Brussels more leverage over Kyiv in order to strengthen commonly shared democratic values in the country,” said one Western diplomat. However, the prosecutions are creating “a very poor image of domestic politics within Ukraine,” said Steven Pifer, a former U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine now at the Washington-based Brookings Institute. According to Pifer, Ukraine fatigue is setting in and, as a result, it could be more difficult to achieve the Yanukovych administration's major goal of better relations with the West. Meanwhile, Russia is turning up pressure on Ukraine’s leadership, hoping to pull Kyiv back into its sphere. It is also using its influence in Brussels and the mistakes of Ukrainian leaders to cut into EU support for closer ties with Kyiv, said Valeriy Chaly, deputy director of the Razumkov Center think tank. “I think that major script writers of this geopolitical scenario are outside of Ukraine,” he said, hinting at Russia. Chaly said the EU has set the fairness of next year’s Ukrainian parliamentary elections as a litmus test. If there isn’t improvement on the democratic front, “it will be hard to talk about an association agreement [between the EU and Ukraine],” he added. Kyiv Post staff writer Yuriy Onyshkiv can be reached at onyshkiv@kyivpost. com


12 News

www.kyivpost.com

July 8, 2011

Genya Ruda in Lviv on June 10. (Pavlo Palamarchuk)

Jewish girl recalls Ukrainian saying: ‘I’m sorry I couldn’t save your mother’ Æ1 comprises today’s western Ukraine boasted a large Jewish population, while Lviv was home to the thirdlargest Jewish community in what was then pre-war Poland. By the war’s end, most of the region’s Jews were dead. Many Jews assert that Ukrainians – like other nationalities – were largely passive observers or eager participants as their brethren were rounded up into ghettos by the Nazis and sent to labor and concentration camps. Ukrainians, and others, respond there is little they could have done to help; under Nazi rule, aiding Jews was a crime punishable by death. Ruda’s story, however, reveals much of the complexity of the times, the lack of clear black and white. Sitting in a café not from the Lviv ghetto where she was interned as a child, Ruda prefers to speak of positive moments rather than to pass moral judgment on the individuals who lived in the city at the time. “There were many good people,” Ruda said. The groundwork for her salvation by the Petriv family was laid long before she was born. Ruda does not know exactly when that was, as all of her family’s documents were destroyed in the war.

Æ Israel has honored hundreds of Ukrainians who risked their lives to save Jews from Nazis But she does know she was born in Zolochiv. Her birth name was Gisel Bogner and her biological parents were named Mehel and Regina, from the family of Roth. Counting back the years, she figures she is 68. In 1922, Ruda’s aunt, her mother’s sister, met a 12-year-old girl named Kateryna at a market in Lviv. In those days, many villagers had traveled from the countryside to Lviv to escape the hunger that was sweeping the region and to look for work. Ruda’s aunt took pity on the girl, who by day’s end had still not found a job. “She became a beloved member of the family,” said Ruda. Kateryna took care of the aunt’s son, Manyk, married a man named Mykola Petriv, who was a baker and Hutsul, part of the ethnic group of highlanders who live in the Carpathian Mountains.

Genya Ruda shows her parents’ photo. (Pavlo Palamarchuk)

She eventually gave birth to a daughter named Olha. Then the war began. When the Germans began rounding up Jews into ghettos throughout the region, Ruda’s aunt in Lviv frantically tried to get Ruda’s mother, Regina, and her to the city. She dispatched Mykola to Zolochiv, but he arrived too late; Ruda and her mother were already incarcerated in the town’s ghetto. Undeterred, Mykola made arrangements to get Ruda and her mother out. Coming to an agreement with a guard, he and Ruda’s father, Mehel, planned their escape. That gesture, however, proved to be Mehel’s parting gift to his family. As they were running away, a Ukrainian guard shot Ruda’s father dead. Ruda’s escape is given an interesting twist by the fact that Kateryna’s husband Mykola, who played a pivotal role in her rescue, was a member of the guerilla Ukrainian Insurgent Army, which was the military wing of the Organization of Ukrainian Nationalists, an organization often accused of anti-Semitism. Liberty in Lviv did not last long, after her presence was revealed by a neighbor. “Within two weeks we were taken to the ghetto,” Ruda said. At a ceremony on a cold January day commemorating Lviv’s victims of the Holocaust, Ruda recalled that Jews were allowed to only bring 20 kilograms of belongings into the ghetto. “The lines went all the way to the Opera House,” she said. The conditions in the ghetto were horrendous. Crowded quarters, lack of sanitation, no medication, meant that illness and death spread fast.

Top: A map of Lviv ghetto as published in an archive copy of Lvivski Visti newspaper, courtesy of the V. Stefanyk Lviv National Academic Library. Below: One of the so-called Gates of Death in Lviv. (Pavlo Palamarchuk)

Mykola and Kateryna brought food into the ghetto, until it became no longer possible. By then, Manyk had died and a decision was made that Ruda be saved. Once again, Mykola bribed a guard, and one day, along with his friend, Andriy Matvienko, “they went to the ghetto and helped get me out,” Ruda said. That is when the Petrivs began to shuffle from one apartment to another in Lviv to avoid detection that they were harboring a Jew. They secured fake documents for Ruda, but those were precarious at best; the deceased child in the documents had been older than Ruda. Discovery was a constant fear. Once, when they were out for a walk, Ruda innocently asked Kateryna to “tie my bendel.” It was a request any child could have made, except that it occurred on a busy street and Ruda had used the Yiddish word for “shoelace.” Yiddish was the spoken language of Central and Eastern European Jews. “After that, Kateryna didn’t allow me out on the streets again,” Ruda said. From the time Mykola had taken Ruda from the ghetto, she recalled he rarely spent nights at home to avoid capture for his nationalistic activities by the authorities, be they Nazi or Soviet. Then, sometime in 1944, the decisive year when the Soviets took control of the city from the Nazis, the Petrivs made plans to leave Lviv. “But Kateryna made a mistake,”

Ruda said. “She told the [building] groundskeeper that we would be leaving at night and she could take what she wanted.” That evening, Mykola was detained on the way to the apartment and shot. The Soviet then showed up at her door and told Kateryna and the girls “that we could unpack our bags,” Ruda said. About a year later, Kateryna was arrested as the wife of a Ukrainian nationalist. Olha and Ruda were left to survive on their own. As she was being hauled away, Kateryna uttered words Ruda will never forget. “I’m sorry I couldn’t save your mother,” Kateryna cried as Ruda and the woman’s daughter, Olha, looked on in horror. Kateryna was released several years later and returned to Lviv. She died in 1985. Olha, who became like a sister to Ruda, died in 2005.

Part 4: Saving Jewish Heritage. Kyiv Post staff writer Natalia A. Feduschak can be reached at feduschak@ kyivpost.com.

Ukraine’s Vanquished Jews Part 1 (June 24): Boris Orych and Western Ukraine Jews Part 2 (July 1): The Killing Grounds Part 3 (July 8): Surviving The Holocaust In Lviv Part 4 (July 15): Saving Jewish Heritage Part 5 (July 22): Reconciliation?


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July 8, 2011

News/Opinion 13

Uzbek asylum seekers face uncertain future in detention BY A L I S S A A MB R OS E AMBROSE@KYIVPOST.COM

Freedom is not something that Zikrillo Kholikov takes for granted. He spent most of last year in a Ukrainian prison, but Kholikov committed no crime in Ukraine. Kholikov is one of five Uzbek men arrested in Ukraine last summer after Uzbek authorities requested their extradition. Three of them – Umid Khamroev, Kosim Dadakhanov and Utkir Akramov – remain in the SIZO #13 detention center. At the time of arrest, all were in the process of seeking political asylum. Their detentions, however, raise questions among refugees and human rights groups about whether Ukraine is a safe country to seek refuge. In 2010, 87 Uzbeks had applied for asylum in Ukraine and 13 more have applied thus far in 2011. Between the arrests last year and the recent events in Kazakhstan, where 28 Uzbeks were extradited despite international protests, Uzbeks in Ukraine are very uneasy. The Prosecutor General of Uzbekistan requested extradition of the men on charges of being involved with banned religious organizations, according to a statement by Nina Karpachova, Ukraine’s human rights ombudsman. But human rights experts say bogus

criminal charges are often used in Uzbekistan to persecute Muslims who practice outside of officially sanctioned religious groups. Kholikov says the charges against him are baseless and that he was not even living in Uzbekistan at the time the authorities say the crimes occurred. “It was really not possible for me to be in two places at once,” he said. In detention, Kholikov says he was quarantined for three days without food in a filthy, overcrowded room. Later, he lived in one cell with up to 40 prisoners and was rarely allowed outside. He knew that if he, and the others, were sent back to Uzbekistan, they would face even more dire circumstances. “At the minimum we would spend 20 years in prison,” he said. “It is really difficult for those who left [Uzbekistan] to try to seek asylum. In that case, people are punished just for trying to escape.” After seven months in custody, Kholikov was released after another country granted him refugee status. The other three men are trying to get the same recognition because, according to the United Nations High Commission on Refugees (UNHCR), in most similar cases, those facing extradition in Ukraine were set free only after being accepted by a third country. Ukraine’s policy on extradition stipulates that a person can be held for up to 18 months in “extradition arrest” as

Zikrillo Kholikov was released from extradition arrest in March and is now waiting to be relocated to a third country which granted him refugee status. (Alissa Ambrose)

the case is investigated. After a year, however, the prosecutor general’s office appears no closer to a judgment for the three Uzbeks still in custody. “The decision is not a matter of one day,” said Yuriy Boychenko, spokesman of the prosecutor general. “It can take several months or even a year.” But human rights experts say that Ukraine should not be considering extradition to a nation run by a dictator such as Islam Karimov. “Ukrainian authorities have an absolute obligation not to return any individual to a country where he or she faces a credible risk of torture,” said Steve

Swerdlow, the Uzbekistan researcher at Human Rights Watch. “Forced return of these men would violate Ukraine’s international obligations.” Swerdlow worked in Uzbekistan until Human Rights Watch was expelled from the country in late 2010. He reported that persecuted individuals are routinely tortured with such methods as electric shock, beatings, sexual abuse, asphyxiation and psychological abuse. According to the U.N. Convention Against Torture, which Ukraine ratified, nations cannot send anyone back to a place where they are likely to be tortured.

When questioned about these cases, Karpachova’s assistants responded that she is monitoring the cases of the Uzbeks in detention. The arrests have had serious consequences for the families of those in custody. Kosim Dadakhanov, for example, has 10 children and two wives, Hadija and Aytjan, living near Kyiv. For a year now, they have struggled to support their family both financially and emotionally. “The children can’t understand why their father is in prison,” Hadija said. “They know he is not a criminal.” Persecution on both religious and political grounds is the reason that most refugees, including the three now in detention, flee Uzbekistan, according to the UNHCR. But the experience of the jailed Uzbekis shows that Ukraine, far from being a haven, only perpetuates the persecution. “They started to be arrested one by one exactly because they were persecuted by Uzbekistan on the grounds they indicated on their asylum applications,” said Maksym Butkevych, the public information officer for the UNHCR in Kyiv. “It looks like these people have no legal way of applying for asylum in Ukraine and not being in jail.” Kyiv Post staff writer Alissa Ambrose can be reached at ambrose@kyivpost. com

Poland seeks to deepen EU commitment in Eastern Europe Æ5 wolnosc, “for our freedom and yours,” one of Poland’s oldest popular slogans has been enthusiastically adapted to the context of the Eastern Neighborhood’s European aspirations. But while Poland’s story was about finding freedom in Western institutions after years of reliance on Russia, Ukraine’s relation to Europe is more subtle, cautions Eugeniusz Smolar, a senior fellow at the Polish Institute of International Affairs. “There is a substantial portion of the population that speaks Russian, that has family and business ties in Russia,” Smolar told me. “Our message is that you don’t need to break these ties. You can improve your relationship with Moscow through becoming part of the European Union’s bloodstream.” Whether or not this lesson has always been understood, Poles have played an integral part in Ukraine’s history since 2004 – the same year that Poland officially joined the EU and half a million Ukrainians gathered together on Independence Square in Kyiv to protest falsified election results. Polish President Aleksander Kwasniewski and Solidarity icon Lech Walesa both intervened to impart the wisdom of the Polish roundtable and facilitate a peaceful resolution to the Orange Revolution. Later in 2008, Poland became the driving force behind the Eastern Partnership program, the EU’s most significant commitment to Ukraine so far. Warsaw will host the partnership’s second summit this year in September,

From left: Polish President Bronislaw Komorowski, Ukrainan President Viktor Yanukovych and U.S. President Barack Obama take part in a dinner for central European leaders at the presidential palace in Warsaw on May 27. (Mykhailo Markiv)

midway through the Polish presidency, and many analysts suspect it will mean an alignment of the stars for Ukraine. Poland is first to acknowledge that the partnership’s programs are underfunded but has remained a steadfast supporter of the program since its inception. Unsurprisingly, the Polish presidential agenda seeks to deepen the partnership and the EU’s commitments.

“Poland sees itself as the lobby of Ukraine in the EU. But sometimes we can be hypocritical,” says Adam Balcer, program director for EU Enlargement and the Neighborhood at demosEuropa, a Warsaw think tank. “We complain very often that the EU should increase its financial support to the Eastern Partnership, but we also have a duty to increase Polish foreign aid, which is only 0.08 percent of our gross domes-

tic product. By comparison, Portugal spends four times that figure.” Poland’s business ties to Ukraine also could improve. Balcer says that Poland has long stood in the way of a more open agricultural market with Ukraine in order to protect domestic markets. Polish investors have largely avoided their Eastern neighbor, only about two percent of Ukraine’s foreign direct investment comes from Poland. Part of that wariness could come from Warsaw’s poor returns on its political investment in the Orange revolutionaries. After the paralyzing failures of the Orange government, Polish and European leaders feared “Ukraine fatigue” was setting in among the general population. According to Smolar, disillusionment reached its nadir with the election of President Viktor Yanukovych, an unlikely ally for Ukraine’s European path. Counter-intuitively, Smolar argued, it was Yanukovych’s presidency and the Party of Region’s control of parliament that allowed for the pro-European changes to the law that have put the association agreement within reach. He pointed to the necessary economic liberalization. “The Ukrainian economy is run by some 10 oligarchs. I have no question that Yanukovych sat down with these men and reached a strategic agreement,” said Smolar. “He is a very pragmatic man.” Ukrainian businessmen are not the only ones Yanukovych has been work-

ing hard to impress. Since early scuffles with EU leaders over freedom of press and political opposition, Yanukovych has slowly worked to improve his relationship with the West. He has a clear incentive: Signing an association agreement with Europe could bump up the Ukrainian president’s low poll numbers. Yanukovych’s progress on this front can be seen in his relationship with Polish Foreign Minister Radoslaw Sikorski. Last November, Sikorski visited Kyiv with his Swedish counterpart to deliver a difficult message about corruption and civil rights. Two weeks ago, in a sharply contrasting visit, Yanukovych awarded Sikorski with the Order of Prince Yaroslav the Wise for his efforts in combating the Chornobyl nuclear plant disaster. Later, when asked in an interview with the Polish Press Agency if Ukraine’s association agreement would be signed during the Polish presidency, Sikorski responded that he hoped the negotiations could be finished by the end of the term, provided negotiations continue at their current tempo. Given the mutual interests between Warsaw and Kyiv in signing such a document, it’s hard to imagine that an association agreement won’t be reached. The question emerges – what fresh challenges Ukraine will face after the ink dries? William Schreiber is a freelance journalist based in Warsaw. He can be contacted at wms@gwmail.gwu.edu.


14 News

www.kyivpost.com

July 8, 2011

Euro 2012 Briefs Editor’s Note: With less than one year before the European soccer championship kicks off in June 2012, the Kyiv Post is launching a Euro 2012 page that will cover events from both host countries of Ukraine and Poland.

Olympic Stadium costs approach $600 million Ukraine’s Euro 2012 agency in June received approval to order $48 million in additional services from Donetskbased AK Engineering for building the capital’s Olympic Stadium, Nash Groshi reported, a non-profit that tracks government spending. This is the second government order this year that AK Engineering has received for Olympic The roof cable system of Kyiv’s Stadium works. In March, the compaOlympic Stadium. ny received a $60 million government order. This brings AK Engineering’s tally to $107 million in six months. The company was made one of the stadium’s general contractors after former Donetsk Oblast governor and Party of Regions member Borys Kolesnikov was appointed Vice Prime Minister of Euro 2012 preparations. The company was also involved in building Donetsk’s Donbas Arena for Rinat Akhmetov. AK Engineering’s founder and former shareholder is Ivan Shakurov, Kolesnikov’s partner in business and legal consultant, stated Nashi Groshi. Since Kolesnikov took control of Euro 2012 preparations in 2010, the cost of building the Olympic Stadium has risen by $312 million. The government’s latest Euro 2012 action plan estimates that a total of $14.5 billion of public and private money will be spent on tournament-related projects including infrastructure, venues, and accommodations. Lviv is only a day’s drive from Kyiv and many European cities. Blessed with picturesque architecture and cobblestoned streets, Lviv stands a chance of becoming another Prague-style tourist hub in Eastern Europe. (Sergiy Polezhaka)

Lviv looks forward to Euro 2012, tourism boom expected BY PAU L I N E T I L L M AN N

LVIV – With less than one year before the Union of European Football Associations’ Euro 2012 soccer championship kicks off, western Ukraine’s unofficial capital is gearing up for a tourist boom. Decorated with picturesque architecture and cobble stoned streets, Lviv was chosen as one of the eight host cities for the tournament that Ukraine is co-hosting with Poland. It will host three group stage matches June 9 -17 in a new stadium that is under construction. According to UEFA, Poles have expressed a high interest in visiting the historic city based on the ticket allocation process held in April. But that is only the tip of the iceberg in terms of the tourism potential this city holds. Only a day’s drive from Kyiv and many European cities, Lviv stands a chance to become another Prague-styled tourist hub in Eastern Europe. “We are really glad that this huge event will take place in our city,” said Anastasiya Kerechan, who manages the landmark George Hotel in Lviv. “Euro 2012 will give us a unique chance to promote our city and also our beautiful country.” The George Hotel is the oldest in Lviv and moderately priced, with rooms ranging from 35 to 90 Euros. “Of course we will raise our prices next year and, especially in June during Euro 2012. But they will still be affordable,” Kerechan said. Five to eight hotels get built in Lviv every year to meet the demand for tourists. “Our main task is not only to organize a perfect championship but basically to improve the living

Æ 1 million tourists visit Lviv annually, mainly from Poland, Ukraine and Germany. standard of our residents,” explained Oleh Zasadny, Lviv’s Euro 2012 office director. With a staff of team of 20, Zasadny manages public transport for Euro 2012 as well as security and marketing. The city budget is about $12 million for development. With the state’s help, a new stadium, airport terminal and new roads will be built. Russian and Ukrainian investors are especially active in building hotels and restaurants. “Of course we hope for more investors in the future,” Zasadny said. “But foreign investors are still cautious because of the unstable political situation.” Besides investment, Zasadny believes that Lviv will repeat future tourism benefits from hosting Euro 2012. Currently, 1 million tourists annually visit Lviv, mainly from Poland, Ukraine and Germany. For the Euro 2012 tournament alone, more than 400,000 additional tourists are expected in Ukraine. Souvenir shop owners are looking forward to new business. Vera Sass, 32, works at a souvenir market near the opera. “We have UEFA t-shirts so far, without a license. These licenses are too expensive when you earn $200 per month,” Sass said. She offers red-blue scarves with the letters of Poland next to a Ukrainian

national scarf. Two countries, one goal: “creating history together,” which is also the official motto of Euro 2012. The highest-profile construction project is the new football stadium, estimated to cost $200 million. It’s about nine kilometers from the center and is a huge construction site, where about 2,000 construction workers are employed. Two of four stadiums in Ukraine are already complete: in Donetsk and Kharkiv. The Olympic Stadium in Kyiv is scheduled for completion in November, according to Deputy Premier Borys Kolesnikov, who oversees the government’s Euro 2012 effort. Lviv’s stadium is expected to be operational by the end of the year, but other infrastructure projects may be lagging. In this, Poland has a big financial advantage as a European Union member. The EU is making significant contributions to Poland’s preparations. “Poles have doubled the amount of money for this event,” Zasadny said. “We aren’t supported by EU structural funds, like our Polish neighbors, but we will make nevertheless the best of it.” While prices are going up in Lviv, Ludmila Dunets, a spokeswoman for Lviv’s Euro 2012 effort, said the city is still a bargain. “For sure everything is much more expensive compared to three, four years ago,” Dunets said. “But our prices are nevertheless far lower than in Kyiv and besides we offer our visitors a lot of different events like the chocolate festival, jazz music festival, classical concerts and so on.”

112 emergency phone service to be launched Emergencies Minister Viktor Baloha said that a 112 emergency phone number will be launched in the four Ukrainian Euro 2012 cities of Kyiv, Donetsk, Kharkiv, and Lviv by the beginning of the sports event. “By the start of Euro 2012, the 112 system will be available in all cities that are hosting the championship,” he said The 112 emergency phone number at a press conference on July 1 in Kyiv. will cover four host cities. Access to the 112 service will be open to both fixed-line and mobile phones. Baloha said that the 112 system will be implemented throughout Ukraine by the end of 2012, start of 2013. The corresponding draft law is ready, according to the minister and negotiations have been conducted with foreign experts who have deployed similar systems. On July 11, an emergencies ministry delegation will make a second trip to the U.S. for consultations on the system.

Zukoski and Gaitana named friends of Euro 2012 U.S. citizen and American Chamber of Commerce in Ukraine President Jorge Zukoski and popular Ukrainian singer Gaitana were named the latest friends of next year’s European soccer championship. During the Chamber’s July 2 annual picnic to mark Independence Day celebrations in the U.S., Ukraine’s Latest Euro 2012 friends singer soccer tournament director Markiyan Gaitana and Jorge Zukoski appear on Lubkivsky named the two newest addistage with Markiyan Lubkivsky on tions to the Union of European Football July 2. Associations’ friends list. “I’m really grateful to the Ukrainian local organizing committee for inviting me to join the exclusive group of Euro 2012 friends,” said Gaitana. Zukoski, the long time advocate for competitive, free markets, was equally delighted. Up to 100 people in Ukraine will be officially named as “friends” of Euro 2012.

Poland 78 percent ready for Euro 2012 Polish Euro 2012 authorities announced that 78 percent of all key infrastructure projects for next year’s soccer championship are either finished or in the final stage of completion. The scale of the number of completed infrastructure projects in Poland are the largest since 1989 with 172 institutions engaged in Euro 2012 preparaWarsaw’s National Stadium seen from tions. Poland expects close to 1 million the Vistula River bank. tourists to visit for three weeks in June 2012.

Platini to inspect Ukraine in September Union of European Football Associations President Michel Platini will visit Poland and Ukraine in late September, according to Ukraine Euro 2012 information center, citing Ukraine tournament head Markiyan Lubkivsky. He said the purpose of the visit is to check the state of readiness of the two host countries before next year’s European soccer UEFA President Michel Platini was championship. Platini will visit Ukraine re-elected in March. again on December 2, during the ceremony for the Euro 2012 draw to be held at the Palace of Ukraine concert hall in Kyiv.

– Compiled by Mark Rachkevych


Lifestyle

World in Ukraine stops in the Czech Republic to taste its beer and learn about trade.

July 8, 2011

Play | Food | Entertainment | Sports | Culture | Music | Movies | Art | Community Events

Soviet bars still lure with cheap beer

Drifters prefer this discreet wooden shack drinkery near a tramcar line in Podil. (Yaroslav Debelyi)

BY MA R K R AC H K E VYC H RACHKEVYCH@KYIVPOST.COM

Shots of vodka or half-liter glasses of draft beer can still be had for less than $1 in Kyiv’s city center. You just have to know where to look without cringing. These dwindling numbers of holes in the wall offer a glimpse of what many modest bistros looked like in the early 1990s with prices that haven’t changed much since. Don’t expect some of these dives to have street addresses, chairs or even names. They’re what are left of the capital’s Soviet-era walk-in, walkout watering holes. Along with the stench of stale beer, visitors aren’t greeted by hostesses or

burly security guards. Instead, orders are taken at centrally located bar counters usually by women approaching the retirement age dressed in colorful maid outfits. Service is often brisk and customers leave as quickly as they enter. Usually frequented by down-at-heel customers, you’re expected to mind your own business and keep conversation to a barely audible tone. After all, the point is to imbibe not admire the dĂŠcor, which usually is lacking, or rap at your cell phone. A stone’s throw away from parliament, the generically named “Kafeteriyâ€? is housed underground on 6 Kriposniy Provulok offering Hr 6 bottled

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Ukrainian beer. The place is stuffy with only five tall, round cafĂŠ tables that are usually shared by strangers who come in for a quick shot of vodka. Another Soviet gem is “Stary Prichalâ€? (Old Wharf) on 3 Poshtova Ploshcha facing the Dnipro River just off a pedestrian bridge. Don’t enter the cafĂŠ located on the sidewalk level. Go up to the second floor of the main building of the river station and take in the stunning views of green banks, careless crowds on the beaches and occasional boats swinging by. The service, however, is anything but stunning here. We waited 15 minutes before leaving behind the Hr 10 draft Lviv beer we had planned to order.

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Next was our favorite drinkery located in a no-name wooden shack on the tramcar line on Kontraktova Ploshcha in Podil. In fact, this part of town is really the only neighborhood that feels like an actual community given its low-storey buildings and quiet side streets. Despite housing the historic Kyiv Mohyla Academy and the winding souvenir path along Andriyivsky Uzviz, this area has many roaming homeless dogs and no frill bars. Serving Hr 6 Obolon drafts and Hr 2.60 50-gram vodka shots, this place is always packed during work hours and is open 24 hours a day. It was the only smoking establishment we visited. Customers here are mostly drift- Æ20

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ALEXEY BONDAREV REV POST.CO OM BONDAREV@KYIVPOST.COM

What’s on at Odessa Film Festival Odessa Film Festival starting on July 15 is very young, yet ambitious. The port city, famous for the silent film “Battleship Potemkinâ€? by Soviet director Sergei Eisenshtein, has a long cinematic history, which has been all but forgotten in the last decades. Deputy Prime Minister Sergiy Tigipko’s wife Viktoria is one of those film addicts who want to revive it. In its second year, the festival will host Hollywood actor John Malkovich to attract more attention. Marina Vladi, the wife of the legendary Soviet poet, singer and actor Vladimir Vysotsky, will also come to Odesa to greet the new Russian film “Vysotsky, Thanks for Being Alive.â€? The singer, known for his outspoken and sharp lyrics, died in 1980, but his spirit lives on in nearly every home in former Soviet states. Popular Russian actress Oksana Akinshena who played Vysotsky’s wife in the movie will accompany Vladi. Sadly, the festival’s program is not very well balanced. The official part includes movies that have been shown before during festivals around the world. And we don’t mean Cannes. The films played at the much lessknown Warsaw or Palm Springs festivals, for example. The jury will select the best of 14 competing films and present dozens of others broadcast in original languages with subtitles. The jury is headed by famous Polish actor Eji Shtur, best known to Ukrainians from the movie “DĂŠjĂ  vuâ€? that was immensely popular in the 1990s). “Submarineâ€? by Richard Aoyade (U.S., 2010) might be a good choice for those who like contemporary American cinema from outside Hollywood. It’s a comedy drama about a boy who wants to lose his virginity before his 15th birthday and to help his mother fix a relationship with her ex-lover. “Melancholiaâ€? by Lars von Trier is one of the best movies on the program. A science fiction thriller, it tells the story of two sisters against the background of the collision of two planets in space, using an unusual film structure. Ukrainians would have liked it more if our Bond girl, Olha Kurilenko, had played the lead role, but she was elbowed out by Kirsten Dunst. Don’t miss Wim Wenders’“Pina,â€? the first art house film and documentary ever made in 3D. Wenders is a legend. Among dozens of films, he’s best known for “Paris, Texas,â€? “Wings of Desireâ€? and “American Friend.â€? In his latest work, he paid homage to his friend Pina Baush, a legendary dance choreographer. She died on stage in 2009, days before the start of the shooting. This cinematic experience of the year is a must-see. For more information, see www. oiff.com.ua/en Kyiv Post staff writer Alexey Bondarev can be reached at bondarev@kyivpost.com


16 Entertainment Guide

Erasure is a British synthpop duo created 20 years ago. Keybordist and songwriter Vince Clark came from Depeche Mode, while singer Andy Bell was a butcher before he saw an ad in the newspaper looking for a singer in a new band. You probably now know their hits “Always” and “I Love to Hate You” by heart but it wasn’t easy for them in the beginning. In Kyiv, they’ll perform their best songs from 17 albums released to date. Saturday, July 9, 7 p.m., Arena Concert Plaza, 2 A Baseyna St., 222-8040, metro Ploscha Lva Tolstoho, www.arena-kiev.com.ua. Tickets: Hr 300-1,000. Dream Theater is an American progressive metal band. Originally called The Majesty, they have been playing for 26 years, bagging cool awards, such as “Guitarist of the Year” or “Best Keyboard Player of the Year” by magazines like GuitarOne or Burrn, and were listed in second place in the book “The 100 Greatest Metal Guitarists” by British music journalist Joel McIver. Apart from composing their own music, the band plays covers of songs of rock gurus like Deep Purple or Metallica during their concerts. Dream Theater has promised to bring one of the largest drum sets in the world with them for the gig in Kyiv. Thursday, July 14, 7 p.m., Palats Sportu, 1 Sportyvna Square. Tickets: Hr 250-650.

• Friday, July 8: Bach evening with Master Klass Chamber Ensemble at 8 p.m., Cultural center Master-Klass, 34 Mazepy St., metro Arsenalna, www. masterklass.org/eng, 594-1063. Tickets: Hr 30. • Friday, July 8: The music of Albinoni, Paganini, Schnittke at 7:30 p.m., the House of Organ Music, 77 Velyka Vasylkivska St., 528-3186, www.organhall.kiev.ua. Tickets: Hr 20-50. • Saturday and Sunday, July 9-10: Concert of the National Symphonic Orchestra as a part of the festival “Summer Music Evenings” at 6 p.m., the summer stage at Mariyinsky Park, near the parliament building (Verkhovna Rada). Free admission.

Known as the craziest music event of the year, Kazantip actually started in 1990s as a sporting event. For years, this beach pad by the Black Sea buzzed with happy youth dancing to world-famous DJs, but now they’ve added extreme sports competitions to their program before turning on the loudspeakers. Wakeboarding, kite surfing, jet skis, frisbee, break dance, hip-hop, dirt jumping, skim boarding – the list just goes on and on. If you are not a professional, training sessions will be conducted to help you catch your first wave or whiz on the dance floor. Held in Popovka village, the festival has sparse accommodation so bring your own tent, rent one or hurry up to book a room in one of the nearby villages. The music part of the festival starts in August. More at www.z-games.com. ua/en/ July 18-31, village Popovka, buses from Yevpatoria and from Simferopol in Crimea. Tickets: Hr 200 (hurry to register on the website to get the 25 percent discount).

(natglam.com)

Best classical picks

(z-games.com.ua)

Get active with Z-Games at Kazantip music fest

• Tuesday, July 12: Chamber ensemble “Kyiv” and harpsichordist Nataliya Svyrydenko will play pieces by Rameau, Chambonnieres, Senaille at 7:30 p.m., The House of Organ Music, 77 Velyka Vasylkivska St., 528-3186, www.organhall.kiev. ua. Tickets: Hr 20-50. • Wednesday, July 13: Jazz-fusion concert with Mike Stern band, founded by a prominent American guitarist at 8 p.m., Zhovtnevy Palats, 1 Instytutska St., 279-1582, www.jazzinkiev. com. Tickets: Hr 150-500.

(artpolefest.org)

With a ticket to the annual Global Gathering, you can be sure of some really good music. Originating in the U.K., this annual dance music festival takes place in six countries. Lasting longer than 16 hours, Kyiv’s edition of this major open-air party will feature some of the world’s most famous DJs, including Richie Hawtin, Markus Schulz, and, of course, Tiesto, a legendary Dutch DJ who has been named the world’s best three times by the respected DJ Mag magazine. Altogether, some 60 artists from 11 countries will be rocking the crowds from five different stages on Saturday, July 9, 2 p.m.- 6 a.m., Chaika airfield, 287-8787, www. globalgathering.com. Tickets: Hr 349-499.

July 12-16

Ethnic festival in Western Ukraine Beach parties may be a classic summer pick, but the wild fields, green mountains and chilly rivers of the Carpathians also offer a stunning retreat. Grab a tent and head to the annual festival Art Pole (or Art Field) to enjoy the breathtaking beauty of Dniester Canyon spruced up with folk music and games. Now in its ninth year, the festival has brought together creative people from all over the world. To its regular folk music program, this year’s Art Pole will add crafts and cooking traditions of nine nationalities, from the Crimean Gypsies to the Australians. Learn pottery, baking or even how to make a musical instrument from a vegetable in this small village in Ivano-Frankivsk Oblast. There are two options of accommodation: bring a tent to live in a camping site or stay in villagers’ houses for Hr 50 per day (includes bed, breakfast and shower). For more details, visit www.artpolefest.org/ENG/ July 12-16, village Unizh, buses available from Ivano-Frankivsk (Hr 25) and from Ternopil (Hr 40). Tickets: Hr 80-280.

(prostofoto.kiev.ua)

Best concerts, famous voices

July 18-31

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July 8, 2011

Saturday, July 9

Spanish folk and Kozak battles Weather fairies whispered in our ears that the sun would shine again in the coming week. So, to compensate for ethnic festivals drowned by the rain last week, head to Mamayeva Sloboda folk park only seven kilometers from the city center. Ukrainian Kozaks, Tatar horsemen, Swedish Vikings and Italian knights will reconstruct old battles wearing proper gear and shouting war chants. In this luscious village setting replete with old churches, wooden houses and bars, legendary musician Oleh Skrypka will continue the show. A master of ethnic beats and sounds, he’ll give some old Ukrainian melodies a new life. Spanish folk band Ethno Madrid will entertain with flamenco tunes. To fit with the revelers, don’t forget to wear a traditional Ukrainian shirt, vyshyvanka. It’s a must-have for every participant. Saturday, July 9, 10 a.m.- 9 p.m., Mamaeva Sloboda, 2 Dontsya St., 3619848, (097)378-5960, www.krainamriy.com. Tickets: Hr 40.

Compiled by Nataliya Horban and Elena Zagrebina


www.kyivpost.com

July 8, 2011

Chernivtsi: much more than ‘Little Vienna’ BY N ATA L I YA H OR B AN HORBAN@KYIVPOST.COM

CHERNIVTSI – Some 40 kilometers from the Romanian border, it feels that the town of Chernivtsi ended up on the Ukrainian territory by pure luck. Throughout its 600-year history, the city – where Ukrainians, Russians, Romanians, Poles, Jews and Moldovans lived peacefully side-byside – has been constantly passed around from one ruler to another. Diversity has always been essential to the town’s character, resulting in beautiful architecture and abundant cultural heritage. To name one thing that makes a trip worthwhile, it would be Yury Fedkovych National University. Added to the UNESCO heritage list in June, the former residence of Bukovinian and Dalmatian Metropolitans was built by Czech architect Josef Hlavka in 1875. Home to 15 educational departments, the university also has a seminary, monastery and a garden. Each detail of the university is astonishing in its complexity and harmony, be it the mosaic roof, domes or gardens. But, of course, the splendor of Chernivtsi doesn’t end here. Often called “Little Vienna� by tourists, Chernivtsi became a part of the Austrian Empire in 1775, hence the reference. Originally only a small settlement, it suddenly became an Eastern gateway to the large empire and therefore received plenty of attention from the top-notch architects of the time. Compairing the city with Vienna, however, doesn’t do this place justice. Indeed, with a rainbow of variously designed buildings – some in good shape and some falling apart – and little streets that cut through the corners and hills of Chernivtsi, the city radiates a magical vibe of coziness of its own. If you’ve been in Ukraine long enough, you probably have noticed the excessive number of gray buildings, and I don’t blame you if you hate them. But that doesn’t hold true for Chernivtsi – just take a look at the main square of the city, where colors range from salmon pink to bright blue. Residents say that they kept

The university in Chernivtsi, an intricate monastic complex built in 1845, made it onto the UNESCO heritage list in June. (www.niceplaces.com)

the original color of the buildings as they are proud of their city’s quirky appearance. Now home to some 300,000 people, Chernivtsi is a city that seems to celebrate every single day. Since 2004 a trumpeter dressed in a Hutsul costume goes to the very top of the city council building at noon to play a tune from the Ukrainian song “Marichka,� written by Chernivtsi poet Mykhailo Tkach. To unveil the wonders of the Carpathian city, take a free guided tour on Sunday sponsored by the Chernivtsi government. They will take you through the streets, which hold many surprises – from a Turkish well next to a Jewish market, to a wrought iron three-wheeled bike and an Armenian church. It’s best to see everything on foot because the town has not been built for cars, and you’d only add to the already-choking exhaust fumes while struggling to drive up the many steep hills. Although Chernivtsi is the capital city of the region, it doesn’t have high office buildings, making it a nice get-away from the business-oriented hustle and bustle of many modern cities. Lavish Austrian-inspired architecture and a nice coffee with a strudel make it feel like you are in Central Europe. Locals recommend coffee at the Teatralna Square, known for

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Live Music ART CLUB 44 44B Khreshchatyk St., 279-4137, www.club44.com.ua Concerts traditionally start at 8 – 10 p.m. July 8 Tabula Rasa, Oshipki, Hr 60 July 9 MJ Project, Hr 50 July 10 Soiuz 44 Jam Session, free admission July 11 Yevgeniy Uvarov Band, free admission July 12 Alexander Muroenko, Fusion Band, free admission July 13 Julian Tomas & Friends (England) July 14 No Comments, free admission DOCKER’S ABC 15 Khreshchatyk St., 278-1717, www.docker.com.ua Concerts traditionally start at 9:30-10 p.m. July 8 Mad Heads UkrainSKA, Yuhym Dym, Hr 70 July 9 Strong Time, Chill Out, Hr 70 July 10 Vostochny Express, free admission July 11 Lemmons, free admission July 12 Tres Deseos Latino Party, Hr 20 July 13 The Magma, Hr 30 July 14 Mr Och, Hr 30

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Entertainment Guide 17

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the gorgeous 1904 theater building and a local version of the Hollywood Walk of Fame, featuring prominent residents such as singer Sofia Rotaru and accordionist Yan Tabachnyk. For the best strudel, head to the vibrant Kobylyanska Street, where little cafes mingle with many bookstores and souvenir shops. Another multicultural feature of this town is the use of languages. The street names are written in English alongside Ukrainian, which doesn’t happen in many places in Ukraine, including Kyiv. With a convenient train schedule and a 14-hour ride, it is a fine weekend getaway for Kyivans. Kyiv Post staff writer Nataliya Horban can be reached at horban@ kyivpost.com List of other Ukrainian landmarks on UNESCO Heritage list • Saint Sophia Cathedral and related monastic buildings (added in 1990) • Kyiv-Pechersk Lavra (added in 1990) • Lviv’s historic center (added in 1998) • Struve Geodetic Arc in Khmelnytsky and Odesa Oblast (added in 2005) • Beech forests in the Carpathians (added in 2007)

DOCKER PUB 25 Bohatyrska St., metro Heroyiv Dnipra, www.docker.com.ua Concerts traditionally start at 9:30-10 p.m. July 8 Antytila, Vostochny Express, Hr 70 July 9 Vostochny Express, Karnavalnaya Zhara, Hr 70 July 10 Animals Session, free admission July 11 Gera and Second Breath, free admission July 12 More Huana, free admission July 13 Rockin’ Wolves, free admission July 14 Crazy Train, free admission BOCHKA PYVNA ON KHMELNYTSKOHO 4B-1 Khmelnytskoho St, metro Teatralna,

390-6106, www.bochka.com.ua Concerts traditionally start at 9-10 p.m. July 8 Angely Charli July 9 Horoshy, Plohoy, Zloy PORTER PUB 3 Sichnevogo Povstannya St., 280-1996, www.porter.com.ua Concerts traditionally start at 7:30 p.m. July 9 Ace Ventura, July 10 Maks Tavricheski July 13 Ivan Bliuz July 14 Tysha JAZZ DO IT 76A Velyka Vasylkivska St., 289-56-06, http://jazz-doit.com.ua Concerts traditionally start at 8:30 p.m. July 8 ArďŹ eva Tatiyana July 9 Elena Pugachova July 13 Dmitriy Garkavenko Other live music clubs: GOLDEN GATE IRISH PUB, 15 Zolotovoritska St., 235-5188, http:// goldengatepubkiev.com/ TO DUBLIN IRISH PUB, 4 Raisy Okipnoi St., 569-5531, http://www.to-dublin.com.ua/ PIVNA NO.1 ON BASEYNA, 15 Baseyna St., 287-44-34, www.pivna1.com.ua DRAFT 1/2 Khoryva St., metro Kontraktova Ploshcha, 463-7330 KHLIB CLUB 12 Frunze St., www.myspace. com/xlibclub CHESHIRE CAT 9 Sklyarenko St., 428-2717 O’BRIEN’S 17A Mykhaylivska St., 279-1584 DAKOTA 14G Heroyiv Stalinhrada St., 4687410 U KRUZHKI 12/37 Dekabrystiv St., 5626262.

MJ Project sings covers on Michael Jackson’s songs. (kiev.olx.com.ua)

Compiled by Svitlana Kolesnykova


18 Lifestyle

www.kyivpost.com

July 8, 2011

World in Ukraine

Editor’s Note: The Kyiv Post continues its “World in Ukraine� series with a look at the Czech Republic after it celebrated St. Cyril and Methodius Day on July 5. In 863, two missionaries came from the Balkans to Great Moravia to propagate Christian faith and literacy.

PETERKA & PARTNERS is the partner of “Czech Republic in Ukraine� project

The Czechs and their beer

A barman pours a generous glass of Czech beer. (sabmiller.com)

BY PAU L I N E T I L L M AN N an d V L A D L AV R OV

PRAGUE, Czech Republic – Czechs love beer. They consume 160 liters per year each, making them No. 1 – ahead of Germany and even Belgium. What is the connection between this huge beer consumption and the national identity of Czechs? First of all, it has to do with tradition. In the Czech Republic, beer is even cheaper than water because it is taxed at a low rate. Journalist Evan Rail has lived for more than 10 years in Prague and wrote the 2007 book called “Good Beer Guide – Prague and the Czech Republic.� For research, he tasted 20 to 30 types of beer per day and said: “The best Czech beer is Kotska de Sitka, which is brewed at Kotnashymavia. It tastes really hoppy, aromatic and fresh – and it is malty, sweet and filling. Just a wonderful beer!� Rail meets friends at pub Pivovarsky Klub in Prague for draught beer, including Pilsener Urquell, a blonde lager that most Czechs favor. One recent trend is microbreweries. The Czech Republic has more than 100 microbreweries, many of them were established only in last few years. Some even brew in pubs.

The reason for the increase, said Marek Kozvera of the microbrewery near the Strahov Monastery, is the desire for quality: “I think a reason for the success of microbreweries is the recollection of quality. Not quantity, but decisive quality. Now the Czechs care more about original products.â€? One of the oldest breweries in Czech Republic is U Fleku, founded in 1499 and the only one to work during the communist era. Guided tours are still given there several times a day in English, Czech or German. Jan Schmidt, one of the brewers, said: “Everything we brew we drink here at the restaurant. We produce about 2,500 hectoliters per year. And we brew only one sort of beer: dark lager. It takes almost three months to get the beer ready for drinking.â€? In 1762, Jakub Flekovski took over the brewery and because his name was too long, he got the nickname Flek. Every year in Prague a beer festival takes place that was established in 2007 by Jan HĂźbner: “Beer is the most popular product of the Czech Republic and at our beer festival we use these popularity.â€? In the Czech Republic there are a lot of small festivals in small villages. At the main beer festival in Prague, there is a huge variety of different sorts of

beer and also a large music and entertainment program. The three best-known Czech beer sorts are Pilsener Urquell, Staropramen and Budweiser. But if you want to test something new you have to visit Pivovarsky dum in Prague. It is popular with many tourists, because you get really unusual beer here: banana beer, coffee beer, cherry beer and even stinging nettle beer. Owner Jan Suran said: “For marketing reasons it is better to make something special.� In analyzing Czech beer dominance, journalist Rail explained: “The most expensive and most aromatic hops are Czech Saaz hops. Besides they have really soft water, so-called ‘baby water.’ That makes the difference. When you drink a pint you drink more than half a liter of liquid.� Czech beer is popular in Ukraine, too. In the mind of many Ukrainians, the number one brand is Staropramen, brewed in Kharkiv and Chernihiv by Sun InBev Ukraine. According to Pivnoe Delo, a Kharkiv-based publication covering Ukrainian and Russian beer markets, Staropramen became the most accessible licensed brand in Ukraine, mainly due to its reasonable pricing and successful advertising

campaign, promoting its softness in a series of videos set in picturesque old Prague settings. Another licensed Czech beer brand is Velkopopovicky Kozel produced in Donetsk by Miller Brands Ukraine, a subsidiary of SABMiller, which occupies the premium segment, and, according Pivnoe Delo experts, is the only brand to threaten the Staropramen monopoly for Ukraine-produced, licensed Czech beer. According to Valentin Boinitsky, Corporate Affairs Manager of Miller Brands Ukraine, the niche for Czech beer in Ukraine is not huge – up to about 3 percent of the total volume of the beer market, valued by Pivnoe Delo at nearly $3 billion annually. He adds, however, that it is one of the most prominent “national niches� in terms of positioning beer brands. “Some brewers even produce pseudoCzech brands, that mimic the Czech beer in label design and naming, but apart from that have hardly any relation to any real Czech brand,� Boinitsky said. When it comes to the imported beer that Ukrainians drink on tap at the restaurants, arguably number one choice for those who want their draft Czech is Krusovice. Even

ÆThe Czech Republic has more than 100 microbreweries; some even brew in pubs. Beer is cheaper than water because it’s taxed at a low rate. though the exact volume of this brand that Ukrainians consume seems to be a closely guarded secret, its brand manager Pavlo Maximov said that the Czech beer school, with its accent on softness and exceptional quality of water, often appeals to Ukrainian bar-goers even more than German beers, with their accented beer taste.

A Pilsen brewery worker checks beer bottles for flaws. (sabmiller.com)

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www.kyivpost.com

Lifestyle 19

July 8, 2011

Diplomatic spats test UkraineCzech relations BY PAU L I N E T I L L M AN N

Since the Czech Republic granted political asylum to a former Ukrainian economy minister in January, relations between the two countries have spiraled downward. In May, Kyiv expelled two Czech diplomats accused by the SBU state security service of spying and attempting to acquire military secrets. Prague dismissed the accusations as retaliation for its decision to grant political asylum to Bohdan Danylyshyn, an ally of opposition leader Yulia Tymoshenko and former economy minister in her previous government. Danylyshyn was facing an investigation into abuse of office which he claims, like many probes into Tymoshenko and her allies, is politically motivated by the administration of President Viktor Yanukovych. After Ukraine expelled the two Czech diplomats, Prague responded by expelling a Ukrainian diplomat. On June 30, the visa section of the

Czech consulate in Donetsk, which processed visas for Ukrainian citizens in the east and south of the country, was forced to close because of delays in providing diplomatic accreditation. The Czech Foreign Ministry said that this was a technical step as the Ukrainian government was yet to agree to the appointment of a new general consul in Donetsk, though documents had been submitted in February. According to a Czech Foreign Ministry statement, this will mean that from July 1, inhabitants of Donetsk, Kharkiv, Luhansk, Dnipropetrovsk, Zaporizhia, Kherson Oblasts, as well as Crimea, will have to apply for visas in Kyiv. Clearly, the diplomatic spats have tested bilateral relations. But despite the increasing political tensions, business leaders say ties economic between the countries – while relatively small compared to Ukraine’s trade turnover with Russia and the European Union at large – are unlikely to be affected.

Maryna Ostapenko, spokesperson for Ukraine’s SBU state security service, shows journalists on May 13 a computer screen (above) with the photograph of Czech military attache Major Petra Novotna who was expelled from Ukraine. (Reuters)

Former Ukrainian Economy Minister Bohdan Danylyshyn (above) was granted asylum in the Czech Republic in January. (Ukrainian European Perspective)

ÆCzech FDI jumped to nearly $80 million in 2007 and remained steady at that level since Cumulative foreign direct investment from the Czech Republic into Ukraine as of 2011 accounted for just 0.2 percent of the nearly $46 billion of inflows since independence in 1991. Figures suggest that Czech investments into Ukraine continue to tick along at $70 million-$80 million per year. “There is no effect of the Danylyshyn story for Czech-Ukrainian economic relationship,” said Oksana Antonenko from the Kyiv office of CzechTrade, the national trade promotion agency of the Czech Ministry for Industry and Trade. She says there are 200 mostly smallto-medium investors and companies working in Ukraine. The lure of Ukraine’s relatively undeveloped market of 46 million people brings some Czechs here, as well as the opportunity to get a foothold doing business where Russian is commonly spoken. But getting started can be tough, Antonenko said. “If you have no personal relationships here, you can’t do anything,” she said. “I tried to build up a company several years ago and I was really frustrated by the bureaucratic hurdles. In the long run Ukraine will embed European standards, also for foreign investment, but it will take some time,” Antonenko added. Czech companies are active in engineering, the communication industry, pharmacy and agriculture.One of them is a stone-crushing plant that employs 15 people, mostly Ukrainians. Located about 60 kilometers from Kyiv, it was built by the Czech company ALTA, which specializes in mechanical engineering, mining, metallurgy and the energy sector. The stone comes from a quarry nearby and will crush up to one million tons of granite stone each year. “It’s really convenient that everything is so close,” manager Volodymyr Pograichniy said. Business is slowly improving for the crushed stone, partly because of new highways being built for the Euro 2012 soccer championship. ALTA, which has about 100 mostly Ukrainian employees in the nation, also dgdset up a brick factory in Kuzmintsky, 120 kilometers from Kyiv. Pograichniy also said that politics and business don’t mix at his level. “The one has nothing to do with the other,” he said

Volodymyr Pograichniy, manager of a Czech stonecrushing plant. (Courtesy)

Business between Ukraine and Czech Republic Bilateral annual trade between Ukraine and Czech Republic ($, million) Foreign direct investment from Czech Republic into Ukraine ($, million)

2,047

1,584 1,374 1,167

78.1

80.3

972

79.7 967

74.9

2009

2010

719 531

53.7 46.9

46.8

2004

2005

42.7

2003

2006

2007

2008

Source: State Statistics Committee of Ukraine

KEY FACTS ABOUT THE CZECH REPUBLIC: • Population (estimated in 2011): 10.5 million • Government: Parliamentary republic • President: Vaclav Klaus • Prime Minister: Petr Necas • Gross domestic product (estimated nominal in 2010): $192 billion • Gross domestic product per capita in 2010: $25,600 • Currency: Czech koruna (CZK) • Education: The Program for International Student Assessment, coordinated by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, ranks the Czech education system as the 15th best in the world. IMPORTANT EVENTS: • Jan. 1, 1993 – Czech Republic become independent, parting with Slovakia, when Czechoslovakia split up into two separate countries • March 12, 1999 – joined the NATO military alliance • May 1, 2004 – joined the European Union • 2009 (first half) – held the rotating presidency of the European Union


20 Lifestyle

www.kyivpost.com

July 8, 2011

Soviet dives still alive Æ15 ers who stop in for a quick one before catching any number of buses, trams or the metro. On the opposite side of Kontraktova Ploshcha metro stop, another wooden shack houses “Cafe-Bar” on Verkhniy Val near a bus stop. Rows of creaky, sticky picnic tables offered some privacy while we ordered Soviet brand Zhihulivske bottled beer for Hr 6.50. Zhihulivske was by far the most popular beer brand in the USSR. At its peak, 735 breweries made the beer. Kyiv’s own Obolon beer factory brewed it and during the 1980 Summer Olympics, it made more than 30,000 deciliters. In 1991, Obolon stopped brewing the brand but re-launched it last year. Across the street on the corner of Verkhniy Val and Kostyantynivska Street, grab the locally brewed Podil beer at a brew hut for Hr 11.50 and one of at least 10 different kinds of salted fish ranging from pike, pikeperch, roach to beam for Hr 15-70. There’s seating indoors and outside. The unfiltered beer is crafted at Brewery No. 2 nearby so it’s fresh and tasty while the bar is open until the last customer. This place is always full and a favorite of Kyivans beyond Podil. We noticed cars constantly pulling up with men carrying in empty plastic bottles to fill. And for those who don’t know how to access the cafeterias attached to government ministry buildings for a cheap lunch, Yaroslava cafe across the street from the Radisson on 13 Yaroslaviv Val offers a variety of stuffed patties for less than $1. City guides say the café has been functioning here since 1947. Styled as a medieval dining hall, it smells like a good old bakery with cherry patties, meat pies and the Ukrainian version of a hotdog – a frankfurter baked in dough. A winter-time favorite, a plate of hot, fresh meat or mushroom patties goes down well with a cup of herbal tea to satisfy any hunger urge. In summer, it has a terrace where, apart from baked goods, you can order an ordinary lunch. Kyiv Post staff writer Mark Rachkevych can be reached at rachkevych@kyivpost. com

One block from parliament, this underground café offers a quick splash of alcohol for those in a hurry. (Yaroslav Debelyi)

Two types of locally crafted Podil beer goes well with any number of salted freshwater fish.

Some places are so cheap that it’s easy to drink oneself into a slumber quickly.

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Paparazzi 21

July 8, 2011

Dynamo club rebrands

Footballer Andriy Shevchenko gives autographs.

Oleksandr Aliev (L) and Artem Milevsky

Captain Oleksandr Shovkovsky (L), head coach Yurii Semin (C) and club president Ihor Surkis

Æ

Dynamo Kyiv club’s president Ihor Surkis

Kyiv’s premier soccer club Dynamo rebranded its emblem by reverting to its previous Soviet version reminiscent of times when it had better success. The club’s veteran players and fans flocked to the Dynamo stadium on July 3 for a festive ceremony and an open training of their favorite team. The only difference between the emblems is that the letter D is white on a blue background, a reversal of the color scheme, and the stars are gold instead of Soviet red. (Evgen Maloletka)

Dynamo Kyiv players mark the new emblem with a training.

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Driver, Interpreter and Kyiv guide. Fluent English, comfortable car. Good knowledge of Kyiv scenery and night life. Please call +380664368303 Vlad You’ll have the best time in Ukrainian capital! Often travelling expat looking for roommate, german/english speaking non-smoker, in attractive 3room flat close to andrievski church. Wifi, SatTV, fully furnished. 800EUR + comunalna, contact: w.cafe@mail.ru DRIVER Mercedes E211 +380 67 305-00-55 PASSENGERS CARRIER Mercedes Sprinter +380 93 558 50-50 TRANSLATOR, ASSISTANCE +380 96 298-55-25

Apartments, Guides, Translations InComing Travel Agency +380 97 007 32 23 +380 97 676 66 93 +380 44 221 34 52 info@incoming.kiev.ua Guided tours both individual and groups. Night tours. Professional interpreters. We work for your edutainment Call (067) 407 71 51 Tatyana.

Interpreter. Pretty Female 30y.o. Assistant. Guide. Help in any business. Accommodation. Transfer Kiev/Ukraine. +38 093 185 80 94 Irina

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24 Photo Story

www.kyivpost.com

July 8, 2011

Americans mark Independence Day in Kyiv Some 3,500 visitors to Spartak Stadium didn’t let the rain stop them from attending the annual Chamber of Commerce in Ukraine’s picnic on July 2 to mark America’s Independence Day (1). Chamber President Jorge Zukoski (R) stands next to Ukraine’s 2012 European soccer tournament director Markiyan Lubkivsky after being named the latest “friend” of the championship by him (2). The event had numerous team competitions including this grueling tug-ofwar contest (4). There was much to see including a live Uncle Sam and Statue of Liberty prancing about (5). Meanwhile Euro-2012 mascots, Slavko and Slavek give their thumbs up (3). Photos by Alex Furman

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#27|JUL08|2011