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Pritzker, US business representatives meet with Shmyhal, infrastructure minister

by Nate Ostiller and The Kyiv Independent news desk January 12, 2024 6:23 PM 2 min read
U.S. Special Representative for Economic Recovery in Ukraine Penny Pritzker (L) and Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal at a meeting in Kyiv on Jan. 12, 2024. (Denys Shmyhal/Telegram)
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U.S. Special Representative for Economic Recovery in Ukraine Penny Pritzker and American businessmen arrived in Kyiv on Jan. 12, U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine Bridget Brink said.

U.S. President Joe Biden announced on Sept. 14 the creation of a U.S. Special Representative for Ukraine's Economic Recovery and added that Pritzker would assume the role.

She has previously visited Ukraine after her appointment and met with President Volodymyr Zelensky and other top leaders.

On Jan. 12, Pritzker met with top Ukrainian officials, including Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal and Infrastructure Minister Oleksandr Kubrakov.

"The key theme (of the meeting) is the strengthening of the Ukrainian economy, the short-term recovery, and long-term development," said Shmyhal. "We are counting on the participation of private companies from the U.S. in the reconstruction of Ukraine."

One of the main focuses was ensuring the stability of Ukrainian exports, he added.

Pritzker commented on the meeting with Shmyhal, saying they discussed "the positive impacts of Ukraine’s reform agenda, export routes, and how we can operationalize ways to increase private sector investment."

She also thanked Kubrakov for "a substantive discussion with Ukrainian officials and private sector reps on practical steps to increase Ukraine’s exports and restore its economic vitality, a crucial counterpoint to Russia’s aggression."

Pritzker and the accompanying delegation also met with Parliament Speaker Ruslan Stefanchuk and representatives of the political parties in the Verkhovna Rada.

According to Stefanchuk, their discussions concerned further financial and military assistance from the U.S.

The speaker also underscored the importance of reforms that Ukraine is undertaking as part of its obligations to the International Monetary Fund (IMF), the U.S., the EU, and other donors.

Discussing Ukraine's recovery efforts, the parties addressed assistance to Ukraine's private sector and ways to attract investors. Stefanchuk also noted that confiscating Russian sovereign assets frozen in the West could play a major role in the recovery.

Who is Penny Pritzker, new US special representative for Ukraine’s economic recovery?
U.S. President Joe Biden announced on Sept. 14 the creation of a new role – U.S. Special Representative for Ukraine’s Economic Recovery. The person to lead the new office is Penny Pritzker, 64, credited for her experience as an “accomplished public servant” and “transformative industry leader.” Pr…

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