The Atlantic Council’s Dinu Patriciu Eurasia Center hosted a conference call with Ukrainian Finance Minister Natalie Jaresko on February 3.
Jaresko said Ukraine faces three major challenges: the war against Russian-backed separatists, the recession, and a civil society that is demanding greater legitimacy from its government and state institutions.
She fielded questions from journalists on Ukraine’s anti-corruption efforts and a financial package that her government is negotiating with the International Monetary Fund (IMF).
Jaresko outlined steps the Ukrainian government has already taken in its fight against corruption, including the elimination of intermediaries in state gas deals; the establishment of an anti-corruption bureau, anti-corruption agency, and a new electronic value-added tax (VAT) system; the appointment of a business ombudsman; and Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko’s legislation to deprive deputies and judges of immunity.
Jaresko highlighted the importance of continued partnership with international financial institutions, particularly the IMF, in supporting Ukraine’s successful reform process. She was optimistic that Ukraine will return to economic growth in 2016 with the international community’s support.
Fred Kempe, President and CEO of the Atlantic Council, moderated the call with Jaresko.