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11 June 1998
For immediate release
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KUCHMA-GORE COMMISSION TO CONVENE ON JULY 22-23
The Kuchma-Gore Binational Commission will convene its second regular meeting on July 22-23 in Kiev, co-chaired by Ukrainian President Leonid Kuchma and US Vice President Albert Gore.
RICHARD MORNINGSTAR TO LEAD US DELEGATION TO KHARKIV
A US delegation led by Amb. Richard Morningstar, the US President's adviser, is expected to arrive in Kharkiv on June 15, on a three-day visit to Ukraine's second largest city. The visit's aim was reported as a probing mission to assess the Kharkiv Region's economic cooperation opportunities and specifically to arrange for compensations as a result of Ukraine’s decision to stop the Kharkiv-based TurboAtom's cooperation with Russia in providing a turbine for a project to construct a nuclear power plant in Iran.
GOVERNMENT GETS MONTH-LONG RESPITE FROM PARLIAMENT
On June 10, the Ukrainian parliament, Verkhovna Rada, voted for granting the government a month-long respite from beingheld accountable for Ukraine's none too robust economic condition. As reported by DINAU, in making a decision to this effect, the lawmakers were guided by several considerations. Firstly, the MPs who initiated a non-confidence sign-in, withdrew their initial claim. Secondly, and probably more significantly, bringing the Cabinet to responsibility is feared by MPs as likelyto serve a pretext for the parliament's dissolution. In his speech Prime Minister Valeriy Pustovoitenko thanked the parliamentarians for their trust in the government and called upon the legislature to cooperate with the executive branch.
BUDGET REVENUE BY BATTLING SHADOW ECONOMY
The State Tax Administration will draft a proposal to increase budget revenue by uncovering and taxing funds in the shadow economy, journalists were told by Mykola Azarov, head of the Tax Administration. Interalia, the tax administration will draft "Measures for Replenishing Revenues to the State Budget," which will list and analyze the main strategies of tax evasion (unlawful conversion of funds into cash through fictitious firms; debt ceding, etc.). Amendments to laws and other normative acts should diminish the possibility of carrying out such operations. Azarov said the budget could receive up to 3.5 billion hryvnia as a result of the battle with the shadow economy. According to him, about 22 billion hryvnia is circulating in the shadow economy, compared to 11 billion hryvnia in the legal economy. Azarov said that in 1997, seven Ukrainians declared income of over 1 million hryvnia a year. According to the Tax Administration, there are probably at least 150,000 people in Ukraine earning more than 1 million hryvnia a year.
IMF MISSION TO VISIT UKRAINE
The International Monetary Fund will send a mission to Ukraine this week. As reported by the Ukrainian News Agency, the mission will review Ukraine's implementation of the reforms required to obtain a loan of $2.5 billion under the IMF's Extended Fund Facilityloan program. The mission is expected to stay in Ukraine for about a week. To obtain the loan, Ukraine must fulfill a list of 92 conditions which include cutting the state budget deficit to 2.5 percent of GDP, accelerating privatization, and implementing a broad range ofstructural reforms.
UN GA PRESIDENT UDOVENKO MEETS US PRESIDENT
The UN General Assembly President Hennadiy Udovenko held a series of meetings with Heads of State, Heads of Government and Foreign Ministers of a number of nations the 20th session of the UN General Assembly. In particular, Mr. Udovenko met with US President Bill Clinton, who noted the significance of the Kuchma-Gore Binational Commission's activity and wished the Ukrainian Government every success in carrying out economic reforms in Ukraine.
DEPUTY PREMIER V.SMOLIY LEADING UKRAINIAN DELEGATION TO UN GA SPECIAL SESSION TO TACKLE DRUG CHALLENGE
A Ukrainian government delegation led by Deputy Premier Valeriy Smoliy arrived in New York with a view of attending the 20th session of the UN General Assembly to address the drug challenge and formulate the global community's s trategy to cope with trafficking and pushing of narcotic drugs and psychedelics. During his stay in New York, Mr. Smoliy will hold working meetings with some heads of other national delegations attending the session.