Analytical review of the week No. 118 of 30/05/2021
ANALYTICAL REVIEW OF THE MOST IMPORTANT DOMESTIC, FOREIGN POLITICAL AND ECONOMIC EVENTS OF THE WEEK
SUMMARY AND KEY TRENDS.
Summing up the results of the outgoing week, it should be noted that:
First, the Office of the President continues to strive to establish control over the judiciary. With the help of criminal cases and searches, pressure continues on the ex-head of the Constitutional Court A. Tupitsky, with the aim of re-subordinating the Constitutional Court to the Office of the President.
Secondly, the media are publishing new "Medvedchuk tapes." The audio recordings are simultaneously aimed at discrediting the main political and economic opponents of the government - V. Medvedchuk and P. Poroshenko. But in fact, the fight against P. Poroshenko is likely to be limited only to the information space. The reason for this is the guarantees of immunity that the ex-president has from his Western partners.
Thirdly, judging by the information leaked in the media about the bill "on oligarchs" announced by the authorities, the wordings that are going to be written in it are rather vague. This is fully consistent with the trend towards "imitation of deoligarchization", the goal of which is to appease Western partners and, at the same time, to get additional electoral points. In fact, the “deoligarchization” announced by the authorities is likely to result in a redistribution of assets between representatives of Ukrainian big business. Those of them that have less influence on the current government may undergo partial or complete "dispossession", while others will not only retain, but also increase their assets and influence.
Fourthly, the main international political event of the outgoing week - the arrest of Roman Protasevich in Belarus and the subsequent stirring up of anti-Belarusian sentiments in the West, fully fits into the trend of aggravating the geopolitical confrontation between the United States and the Russian Federation (as well as their allies and satellites) in the East Europe. The arrest of Protasevich was a continuation of the "cleansing" of the Russian sphere of influence from the pro-Western opposition. We have recently observed similar processes of clearing the American sphere of influence from the "pro-Russian" opposition in Ukraine and the Baltic countries. In the medium term, the trend towards US-Russian confrontation and "bloc confrontation" will continue.
Fifth, this week it became known that the talks between Joe Biden and Vladimir Putin will take place on June 16 in Geneva. In view of the aforementioned geopolitical confrontation, the parties are unlikely to be able to reach agreements on the most confrontational areas, including Ukraine. Nevertheless, agreements on some less acute issues (such as ensuring stability in Afghanistan), as well as on strategic arms control, are quite possible.
Sixth, the raw material model of the Ukrainian economy continues to demonstrate its failure and inability to protect the country's population. The countries producing the coronavirus vaccine showed much better investment performance for 2020 at the height of the pandemic. Capital investment in Ukraine fell by 19% in 2020, although capital investment in Russia fell by only 1.4%, and venture capital investment in the United States even rose to a record $ 130 billion.
Seventh, Ukraine continues to ignore the interests of domestic manufacturers such as the Kryukov Carriage Works in favor of purchasing foreign electric locomotives designed in the USA or France. But, at the same time, Ukraine can use such projects to revive political relations with the United States and France in the framework of various initiatives, such as the Crimean Platform. Although, the increase in political support for Ukraine will remain at the discretion of these countries.
As part of the general desire of the authorities to establish full control over all key and strategically important spheres in the country, V. Zelensky initiates a bill "on national resistance", which regulates the creation of territorial defense forces and volunteer units, subordinating them to the president, and at the same time weakening the importance of Avakov.
The tentative text of the draft law “on oligarchs” published in the media indicates that there are significant risks that the process of deoligarchization in Ukraine may in fact contribute to the usual elimination of political and economic competitors, as well as the redistribution of assets of some representatives of large national capital in favor of others or in the crawl of foreign transnational corporations.
The tendency for Bankova to establish control over the judicial system also continues. With the help of criminal cases and searches, pressure continues on the former head of the Constitutional Court A. Tupitsky, with the aim of re-subordinating the Constitutional Court to the Office of the President.
New "Medvedchuk tapes" are being published in the media. The audio recordings are simultaneously aimed at discrediting the main political and economic opponents of the government - V. Medvedchuk and P. Poroshenko. But in reality, the fight against P. Poroshenko will be limited only to the information space.
1. The presidential bill "On National Resistance" has been submitted to Parliament.
This week, President Volodymyr Zelenskiy submitted to parliament a bill "On National Resistance", which regulates the creation of territorial defense forces and volunteer units under the Armed Forces of Ukraine [https://politics.segodnya.ua/politics/zakony-zelenskogo-1527455.html].
According to the document, volunteer formations can be created within the framework of the "national resistance".
They are created according to the territorial principle, which coincides with the administrative division of Ukraine into regions and districts.
Financing and material and technical support of national resistance will be carried out at the expense and within the funds of the State budget of Ukraine, local budgets, as well as from other sources not prohibited by the legislation of Ukraine (it is not specified which ones).
The bill stipulates that the leaders of the territorial defense - and therefore of the volunteer detachments - are officials appointed by the president. Governors, heads of civil-military administrations, districts and the chairman of the Kiev city administration. But mayors are not elected by residents of cities (they have only an advisory vote). The operational control of the defense is carried out by the officers of the Armed Forces of Ukraine - the General Staff delegates them to the posts of chiefs of staff for each zone. In fact, V. Zelensky has the opportunity to create his own personal "armies" on the ground.
The Defense Forces at the Armed Forces of Ukraine.
In regions, districts and cities, brigades (in regions and cities with a population of one million) and territorial defense battalions (in smaller settlements) can be created. They are recruited like a regular army - by conscription and contract.
Both people who have already served and those who have never been in the army can get into such units. The recruitment is made through the military registration and enlistment offices by concluding a contract. After that, they receive all social guarantees and benefits, like the military.
Proposals for the creation of territorial defense have already been submitted to parliament. For the bill [http://w1.c1.rada.gov.ua/pls/zweb2/webproc4_1?pf3511=70682] No. 4504 on the territorial defense of Ukraine, the deputies did not vote.
It is believed that last year's draft was not adopted due to the fact that it was developed on the initiative of the then deputy secretary of the NSDC and Petro Poroshenko's nominee Sergei Krivonos. Subsequently, Krivonos was dismissed from his post for criticizing the public statements of Vladimir Zelensky. However, from a military and administrative point of view, the "Krivonos bill" was spelled out much better than the current document. So, in it, the command of the Territorial Defense Forces was unambiguously assigned to the General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, while the draft law "On National Resistance" initially laid down a dualism of management in the form of subordination of the territorial defense units to both the General Staff and local officials. Such a situation will inevitably lead to the fact that in the event of real combat operations, the controllability of such units will be close to zero. In addition, in the current bill, in contrast to the "Krivonos bill", along with the military personnel of the territorial defense forces, some "volunteers" are also introduced. The semantic load of this term and the need for its separate prescription are completely incomprehensible, since a soldier under a contract is, by definition, a volunteer. Another distinguishing feature of the current presidential bill from the previous "Krivonosov" one is that according to it, the defense units can be involved in the maintenance of public order in peacetime. That is, they may be entrusted with law enforcement functions, which, strictly speaking, should be under the jurisdiction of the Ministry of Internal Affairs, and not military units.
In fact, under the pretext of an external threat, V. Zelensky creates his own "pocket army" for budgetary funds. In 2014, volunteer battalions in most cases were created under the leadership of Interior Minister Arsen Avakov. Now, something similar is planned to be created under the leadership of local officials controlled by the OP. Thus, Banking seeks an additional pretext to abandon the figure of A. Avakov.
2. The tentative text of the bill on oligarchs has become known.
On May 27, the editorial board of ZN.UA published an analysis and an approximate text of the bill “on oligarchs” [https://zn.ua/ukr/internal/zakonoprojekt-pro-oliharkhiv-osnovni-polozhen.... The draft law spelled out the mechanism of recognition as an oligarch. The term itself sounds like this: "A person who has significant economic and political weight in public life." According to the formulated definition, an oligarch is a person who at the same time:
1) takes part in political life (transcript: occupation of a high position, connection with high-ranking officials, leadership or funding of a political party);
2) has a significant influence on the media (it is important that this media "disseminates information of a political nature");
3) controls significant economic activity (meaning the monopoly nature of the person's or his FIG, or simply owning an asset worth more than 1 million living wages: today it is the equivalent of 2.27 billion UAH, or $ 84 million).
The persons involved in the list will be prohibited from:
• finance / make contributions to political parties;
• be a beneficiary and / or own media of a socio-political nature;
• to be a buyer of objects of large privatization.
In addition, there is an important innovation in the bill - the need to report on meetings with current politicians and officials.
At the same time, the process of being recognized as an oligarch and entering it into the register will not be instantaneous. The defendants will be given time to get rid of one of three criteria. Thus, representatives of big business and financial and industrial groups (FIGs) will be forced to sell their media outlets and declare secret meetings with officials and people's deputies (at least on paper).
Despite the seeming accuracy, the criteria for defining "oligarchs" are actually rather vague. Under the definition of an oligarch, many people may or may not fit, in turn, this gives the right to assume that a selective approach will be used in this matter. Subsequently, the vagueness of the criteria will give the right to appeal the decision to the ECHR.
In turn, Bankova's publication ZN.UA was called fiction. A. Ermak's advisor M. Podolyak notes that the final version of the document may change after all stages of legislative work [https://www.pravda.com.ua/rus/news/2021/05/27/7295132/].
The topic of "deoligarchization", on the one hand, acts as a PR tool for the authorities, since it is very popular in society. On the other hand, it is rather an imitation of the process, and measures of influence on the oligarchs can be carried out selectively. As a result, the result may not be de-oligarchization, but the redistribution of assets of some representatives of large national capital in favor of others. For example, from V. Medvedchuk and I. Kolomoisky to R. Akhmetov. In addition, Western partners are extremely interested in displacing representatives of big business from key positions in the Ukrainian economy, this will allow foreign transnational corporations and their large businesses to anchor here.
3. New "Medvedchuk tapes" have been published in the media.
Earlier this week, the media published the second part of the so-called "Medvedchuk tapes", which deals with the return of control over a part of the Samara - Western Direction oil pipeline after nationalization. In the first part of the investigation, it was about V. Medvedchuk's communication with representatives of ORDLO and the leadership of Russia. The journalists allegedly found out how V. Medvedchuk, the co-chairman of the OPSJ, became the owner of the "pipe" - a section of the Samara - Western Direction oil product pipeline. According to journalists, he regularly communicated with the head of the Russian "Rosneft" Nikolai Tokarev, to whom he repeatedly told that all actions are coordinated with "our main". According to journalists, we are talking about the fifth president, Petro Poroshenko [https://www.pravda.com.ua/rus/news/2021/05/24/7294718/]. The attention of the society is focused on the fact that V. Medvedchuk and P. Poroshenko acted in "one bundle". Together they made money on petroleum products, and the former president had his share of this.
It should be reminded that on February 19, at a meeting of the National Security and Defense Council, sanctions were imposed against Viktor Medvedchuk and several other persons, and it was also instructed to return the Prikarpatzapadtrans oil pipeline to state ownership. And in early April, President Volodymyr Zelenskyy announced the return of the Prikarpatzapadtrans oil pipeline to state ownership. Earlier, on May 11, V. Medvedchuk and T. Kozak were charged with treason and conspiracy with the Russian side to extract oil and gas in the Black Sea. By a court decision, V. Medvedchuk remained under house arrest [https://www.pravda.com.ua/news/2021/05/21/7294399/].
Within the framework of the internal trend of the authorities to eliminate and suppress the main political and economic competitors, and as an example for the fight against oligarchs, one of the main leaders of the "anti-Western" opposition, V. Medvedchuk, continues to be discredited.
Besides that, an information campaign is unfolding against P. Poroshenko, whom they are trying to put in "one bundle" with V. Medvedchuk, which in turn strongly discredits him in front of a potentially loyal (but not nuclear) electorate, part of which V. Zelensky can claim. Along with this, the command of the authorities demonstrates to the public an imaginary readiness to apply strict measures of pressure not only against the "anti-Western" opposition, but also against representatives of the opposite camp. Although, most likely, the fight against P. Poroshenko will be limited to the information space, and the second cycle of "Medvedchuk's tapes" or similar information stuffing will serve as an additional subject for behind-the-scenes bargaining.
4. The situation around the ex-head of the CCU A. Tupitsky.
On May 27, the Goloseevsky Court of Kiev closed the case on a possible conflict of interest and non-declaration of property of the former head of the Constitutional Court, Alexander Tupitsky [https://news.liga.net/politics/news/sud-zakryl-delo-protiv-tupitskogo-o-... zemle-v-krymu-i-konflikte-interesov], the decree on the appointment of which as a judge of the Constitutional Court of Ukraine was canceled by President Volodymyr Zelensky.
In February, it became known that the NACP drew up protocols for 3 judges of the Constitutional Court. They were suspected of a conflict of interest. The conflict of interest related to the decision by which the Constitutional Court overturned a number of anti-corruption legislation. The National Agency for the Prevention of Corruption and the Prosecutor's Office argued that A. Tupitsky had not declared land in Crimea. The court found no offenses in the actions of A. Tupitsky. Similar cases were also closed against judges of the Constitutional Court Igor Slidenko and Irina Zavgorodnyaya [https://www.pravda.com.ua/rus/news/2021/05/27/7295045/].
Earlier, on May 13, searches were carried out at A. Tupitsky's. In addition, this week, another indictment against the former head of the KSU was transferred to the Podolsk court of Kiev, he is accused of knowingly false testimony and bribery of a witness [https://news.liga.net/politics/news/obvinenie-protiv- tupitskogo-peredano-v-sud]. The accused, allegedly in the interests of the former chairman of the Supreme Economic Court of Ukraine, bribed a witness to give deliberately false testimony in criminal proceedings related to the unlawful seizure of property assets of Zuyevsky Energo-Mechanical Plant CJSC.
Thus, we are witnessing a continuation of the trend towards the desire of the current government to gain control over the country's judicial system. As we wrote earlier, the Office of the President, in particular, is waging a war for control of the Constitutional Court. And in order to reassign the KSU to itself, it continues to put pressure on the ex-head of the KSU A. Tupitskiy with the help of criminal cases and searches.
The main international political event of the outgoing week - the arrest of Roman Protasevich in Belarus and the subsequent stirring up of anti-Belarusian sentiments in the West, fully fits into the trend of aggravating the geopolitical confrontation between the United States and the Russian Federation (as well as their allies and satellites) in Eastern Europe. The arrest of Protasevich was a continuation of the "cleansing" of the Russian sphere of influence from the pro-Western opposition. We have recently observed similar processes of clearing the American sphere of influence from the "pro-Russian" opposition in Ukraine and the Baltic countries. In the medium term, the trend towards US-Russian confrontation and "bloc confrontation" will continue.
Also, this week it became known that the talks between Joe Biden and Vladimir Putin will take place on June 16 in Geneva. In view of the aforementioned geopolitical confrontation, the parties are unlikely to be able to reach agreements on the most confrontational areas, including Ukraine. Nevertheless, agreements on some less acute issues (such as ensuring stability in Afghanistan), as well as on strategic arms control, are quite possible.
1. The arrest of Roman Protasevich in Belarus and subsequent events.
On May 23, at the Minsk airport, Belarusian security forces detained Roman Protasevich, an opposition leader and ex-editor of the NEXTA telegram channel. The RyanAir airline plane, on board which he flew from Athens to Vilnius, was urgently planted in Minsk due to reports of mining [https://focus.ua/world/483530-oni-ubyut-menya-protasevich-prosil-bortpro... -sovershat-posadku-v-minske-foto]. Together with Roman Protasevich, his girlfriend, a citizen of Russia, Sofia Sapiga, was detained in Minsk.
Protasevich is accused of involvement in organizing mass riots and terrorist activities. Under the sane articles (130, 293 and 342 of the Criminal Code of Belarus) - he faces 15 years in a strict regime colony. In turn, Sofia Sapega, who administered the Telegram group, where the personal data of the Belarusian security officials were laid out for the purpose of subsequent threats and attacks on them, also faces criminal liability and a long term of imprisonment.
After the arrest of Protasevich and his companion, a number of countries banned direct flights with Belarus, flights of the Belarusian company "Belavia" over their territory, and flights of their airlines in the airspace of Belarus. In particular, the maximum level of restrictions on flights was introduced by Ukraine, Lithuania, Latvia, France, and a number of other countries. Poland has also introduced restrictions on direct flights and Belavia flights.
The International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) recommended flying over the territory of Belarus through the Baltic states [https://www.pravda.com.ua/rus/news/2021/05/24/7294707/].
At the same time, the Russian side provides information support to Belarus and expresses solidarity with it.
After the arrest of Protasevich, relations between Ukraine and Belarus worsened significantly. In view of the fact that Kiev took a sharply anti-Belarusian position and introduced the maximum level of restrictions even despite the economic damage to its own airports, Belarus established a one-time licensing of the import of certain goods from Ukraine. This is stated in the Resolution of the Council of Ministers No. 292 of May 26 [https://officelife.media/news/25936-belarus-vvodit-litsenzirovanie-impor.... Thus, the export of Ukrainian goods to the Republic of Belarus will be complicated.
In addition, there were reports in the media about the likelihood of stopping the supply of Belarusian 95th gasoline to Ukraine [https://biz.liga.net/ekonomika/tek/novosti/belarus-mojet-ostanovit-posta... -ne-podtverdil-nominatsii-na-iyun].
The current situation was reflected in the domestic policy in Ukraine. On May 24, the Servant of the People parliamentary faction expelled from its membership MP Yevgeny Shevchenko, who had previously visited Belarus as part of his public diplomacy initiatives, and met with President Alexander Lukashenko [https://interfax.com.ua/news/ general / 745893.html].
Analyzing the above, we note that the arrest of Protasevich is a continuation of the ongoing efforts for several months to cleanse Russia and Belarus from the pro-Western opposition. This clean-up is taking place against the backdrop of deteriorating US-Russian relations. In the American sphere of influence in Eastern Europe, similar processes are taking place, within the framework of which “pro-Russian” or “potentially pro-Russian” forces are being purged. For example, in Ukraine, a number of opposition television channels were closed and sanctions were imposed against representatives of the OLE party. Similar processes, only more extended in time, are now taking place in the Baltics.
Thus, the attempt to "air blockade" of Belarus by the West, which we are witnessing, is nothing more than another round of a new "Cold War" between the American and Russian spheres of influence. In the short term, passions around this topic may subside for a while, until Biden's meeting with Putin. However, it is almost certain that after it the main course of continuing political and economic confrontation in Eastern Europe will continue.
In the meantime, the United States is interested in a situational refraining from harsh anti-Russian actions on the eve of important negotiations, the role of the coordinator of the persecution of Belarus was assumed by Great Britain, whose authorities made the most harsh statements about the arrest of Protasevich, right up to calls to ban the supply of Russian gas to Europe via pipelines Nord Stream and Yamal - Europe.
2. A meeting between Biden and Putin is scheduled for June 16 in Geneva. Forecasts.
It became known this week that Joe Biden and Vladimir Putin will meet on June 16 in Geneva [https://www.rbc.ru/politics/25/05/2021/60ad035b9a79477dca649953].
The parties will discuss the state and prospects of bilateral relations, issues of strategic stability and topical issues on the international agenda, "including interaction in the fight against the coronavirus pandemic and the settlement of regional conflicts [http://www.kremlin.ru/events/president/news/65655]".
Washington confirmed that the meeting will take place on June 16. According to White House spokesman Jen Psaki, Putin and Biden "will discuss a whole range of pressing issues," writes AP. Psaki added that the US is seeking to restore "predictability and stability" in relations with Russia.
Of the entire range of issues that the parties plan to discuss (issues of strategic stability, the fight against a pandemic, the international agenda and regional conflicts), there is only a consensus on the first. Both the Russian Federation and the United States do not want to slide into a hot / nuclear war, and therefore have extended START-3 and will renew other similar agreements, and possibly conclude new ones.
As for the rest of the questions, they will be prevented from agreeing on them:
• Competition of vaccine manufacturers. As we remember, the Russian Sputnik V vaccine has not yet been allowed on the European or American market. And if you do not take into account the issue of mutual supply of vaccines, any talk about "joint response to the pandemic" will remain absolutely meaningless.
• The desire of the Biden administration to regain the lost role of the world hegemon. Both Joe Biden himself and his associates openly declare that they intend to return the European Union under the stricter control of Washington, which is contrary to Moscow's interests. In addition, the globalist aspirations of American Democrats categorically reject Russia's right to have its own sphere of political influence. Meanwhile, such a sphere has already been formed, and Moscow does not intend to surrender it.
• The outbreak of a new "Cold War" between the parties and the existential geopolitical contradictions between them.
Considering the above, one should not expect any "breakthrough" decisions (especially on the Ukrainian issue) from the upcoming meeting between Biden and Putin. Nevertheless, agreements between the parties on some peripheral areas in which their interests coincide (for example, ensuring stability in Afghanistan after the withdrawal of American troops) are quite possible.
3. Statement by Dmitry Kuleba on the fact that Ukraine was not invited to the NATO summit.
On March 26, Foreign Minister Dmitry Kuleba said that Ukraine "cannot understand how it is possible not to find a format for the participation of the Ukrainian side in the June summit of the leaders of the Alliance countries against the background of Russian aggression in the region" [https://www.pravda.com.ua/rus / news / 2021/05/26/7294984 /].
According to D. Kuleba, the quote:
“We understand the desire of the Allies to hold a closed summit to discuss transatlantic unity. There were examples of such closed summits. But we absolutely do not understand how a closed NATO summit can be held against the background of the aggressive actions of the Russian Federation against Ukraine in the Black Sea region and against the members of the Alliance. I am referring to the latest findings from the Czech Republic investigation. We cannot understand this - how can you not invite Ukraine, how can you not find a format for Ukraine's participation in the current summit [Ibid. ] ".
It should be noted that Dmitry Kuleba's “indignation and bewilderment” has a clearly feigned character and is aimed at a PR effect. In fact, after the statements of the American, French, and German sides that “it is too early for Ukraine to join NATO,” made over the previous two months, it became quite clear that Kiev would not be given the MAP in the foreseeable future.
In this regard, any statements by the Ukrainian authorities about interaction with the North Atlantic Alliance should be perceived as an attempt to promote themselves in front of the European-oriented part of the Ukrainian electorate.
4. In India, new rules for social media and internet platforms have come into force.
This week, new rules for social media and internet platforms came into force in India.
Among other things, they prohibit content that affects the "sovereignty and integrity of India" or threatens national security, or is racist, libelous or harmful to minors. In addition, stricter control over the observance of "big-date" corporations with national legislation on personal data is being introduced [https://techcrunch.com/2021/05/26/india-asks-social-media-firms-if-they- have-complied-with-the-new-regulations /].
Google has already said it intends to comply with the new rules, Facebook has said it is “seeking to comply” but is discussing them with the Indian government, and WhatsApp (although owned by Facebook) challenged the new rules in New Delhi court.
The above news suggests that, following the recent "farmer protests" against the government of Narendra Modi, fueled by liberal globalist networks, Indian authorities have decided to limit destructive foreign influence on the Internet. It is curious that New Delhi's attempts to weaken the influence of American technology corporations on the country's politics occur simultaneously with the course of the Joe Biden administration to grow India as the largest ally in its geopolitical struggle with China.
Apparently, the Indian leadership is not satisfied with the role of the "satellite". That is why it is trying to strengthen digital sovereignty.
The raw material model of the Ukrainian economy continues to demonstrate its failure and inability to protect the country's population. The countries producing the coronavirus vaccine showed much better investment performance for 2020 at the height of the pandemic. Capital investment in Ukraine fell by 19% in 2020, although capital investment in Russia fell by only 1.4%, and venture capital investment in the United States even rose to a record $ 130 billion.
Ukraine continues to ignore the interests of domestic manufacturers such as the Kryukovsky Carriage Works in favor of purchasing foreign electric locomotives designed in the USA or France. But, at the same time, Ukraine can use such projects to revive political relations with the United States and France in the framework of various initiatives, such as the Crimean Platform. Although, the increase in political support for Ukraine will remain at the discretion of these countries.
1. In 2020, capital investment in Ukraine fell by 19%.
The State Statistics Service has published a report on capital investments for 2020 by categories [http://www.ukrstat.gov.ua/operativ/operativ2021/ibd/kin/kin_r/ki_v_akt_z.... According to him, in 2020, capital investments fell by 19% and amounted to UAH 508 billion [https: //economics.segodnya.ua/economics/business/kapitalnye-investicii-v-ukrainu-rezko-sokratilis-pokazatel-upal-pochti-na-20-1524814.html]. The largest drop in investments was recorded in the spheres of art, sports, entertainment and recreation - by 33.12% (to UAH 2.77 billion), temporary accommodation and catering - by 31.11% (to UAH 1.95 billion). .), transport, postal and courier services - by 20.34% (up to 34.88 billion UAH). For comparison, in 2019 the volume of capital investments in Ukraine increased by 11% compared to 2018 - up to UAH 584.45 billion. At the end of 2018, capital investments in Ukraine amounted to UAH 520 billion.
If we compare Ukraine in this sense with countries that produce vaccines against coronavirus, then investments in fixed assets in the Russian Federation in 2020 decreased by only 1.4% compared to 2019, while in the IV quarter of 2020 this figure increased by 1 , 2% in annual terms, follows from the data of Rosstat [https://tass.ru/ekonomika/10827883]. 2020 set a record for the amount of venture capital raised in the US despite the pandemic. In 2020, the value of venture capital investments in the United States was about $ 130 billion [https://www.statista.com/statistics/277501/venture-capital-amount-invest... ~: text = 2020% 20set% 20a% 20record% 20for, approximately% 20130% 20billion% 20U.S.% 20dollars. ]. China experienced a significant drop in venture capital investments in 2020 - from $ 2.69 billion to $ 909 million [https://www.business-standard.com/article/finance/vc-investments-from-ch... 66-in-2020-startups-to-feel-the-heat-120091700347_1.html].
Thus, the country's ability to produce a vaccine against coronavirus also testifies to a better situation with capital investments in the economy. It is also important to understand the difference between capital and venture capital investments - even in the pandemic, venture capital investments in the United States reached record highs. The raw material model of the Ukrainian economy makes it extremely vulnerable to any unforeseen circumstances, such as the coronavirus pandemic. The economies of vaccine producing countries show much more resilience to contingencies.
2. Ukraine will purchase 130 French electric locomotives, in parallel with plans to localize 35% of this production in the country.
The governments of Ukraine and France signed a framework agreement on the supply of new electric locomotives for Ukrzaliznytsia produced by one of the world leaders - the Alstom company. It is planned to purchase up to 130 locomotives in the amount of 900 million euros (over 30 billion UAH) [https://biz.censor.net/r3267427]. The memorandum on the possibility of purchasing electric locomotives of the French company Alstom was signed by Ukrzaliznytsia back in 2018. Earlier, the Ukrainian side planned to purchase 200 locomotives by 2025 and 500 locomotives by 2029. Since 2019, negotiations have been held on the supply of 210 locomotives, but in the end, by 2025, France planned to supply 110 locomotives to Ukraine. In May 2021, the governments of Ukraine and France signed a framework agreement on the supply of up to 130 electric locomotives [https://biz.censor.net/news/3242656/ukraina_gotovit_kontrakt_na_pokupku_.... In the agreement between Ukraine and France, the European partner provides for loans in the amount of 750 million euros for a period of up to 10 years. French Minister of Economy, Finance and Reconstruction Bruno Le Maire announced his readiness to provide 35% localization. JSC Kryukov Carriage Works (KVSZ), which localized 30 American TE33AS diesel locomotives in 2018 - 2019, previously criticized the intentions of purchasing electric locomotives abroad.
In addition to the purely economic effect, Ukraine may try to use this agreement with France to make it more accommodating in matters of political support for Ukraine at various sites, such as the Crimean platform, although this agreement on the supply of electric locomotives alone is not enough. Ukraine should build up economic cooperation of this kind with France and Germany in order to build up political mutual understanding through economic interaction.
3. The United States lifted sanctions against the Chinese company Xiaomi, as it won a lawsuit against the Pentagon.
The American court lifted sanctions from Xiaomi [https://forbes.ua/ru/news/amerikanskiy-sud-znyav-sanktsii-z-xiaomi-ranis... ]. Earlier, the company agreed with the Pentagon to lift the restrictions. A court in the District of Columbia (USA) ruled to remove the status of a “communist Chinese military company” (CCMC) from Xiaomi. Thus, all restrictions have been removed for persons from the United States who buy or hold shares in the company. The US authorities did not provide evidence of the company's involvement in the Chinese intelligence services. In mid-March, the ban was suspended because a US federal court ruled that the company's blacklisting was unjustified. The administration of US President Biden also managed to introduce sanctions against seven Chinese companies and government laboratories. The reason is the creation of supercomputers that help develop nuclear and other modern weapons.
The news of the lifting of US sanctions against the Chinese company Xiaomi coincides in time with the decision of the Biden administration not to interfere with the completion of Nord Stream 2. We can also add here the decision to withdraw troops from Afghanistan before September 11, 2021 (although this promise may remain a promise, as is the case with similar promises of Barack Obama). But, a trend is emerging for the US “focusing” on internal problems and at the same time maintaining the role of the US dollar as a world reserve currency. In this paradigm, the US economy does not need to build up domestic production, but in this case, the US is critically interested in world trade continuing to use the US dollar as the main currency. It makes sense for the Biden administration to negotiate with European partners to prevent the creation of a purely European payment system, which would become a competitor to Visa and MasterCard.