Kyiv School of Economics hosted public discussion about privatization


On Dec.1 Kyiv School of Economics hosted public discussion about privatization. We would like to share with you the key points from our speakers.

Torbjorn Becker, Director of the Stockholm Institute of Transition Economics (SITE) at the Stockholm School of Economics

“In 80-90s Sweden went through the phase of selling state assets but we still have a bunch of state-owned companies. The reason is that government is trying to make the market more efficient by having these companies to break possible oligopolies of private sector. If you privatize without having a sense of what you need to regulate, you can create a lot of local monopolies that give rise to a lot of inefficiencies and new vested interests.”

Timur Bondaryev, Managing and Founding Partner, Arzinger

“To privatize there should be a clear strategy and vision on which sectors we want to have state champions. Everything, which is in the new draft law is not a rocket science at all. Nobody can doubt that privatization should be transparent. State has already proven that it can’t be a proper manager and proper owner, therefore we should get rid of those assets as soon as possible.”  

Yuliya Kovaliv, Head of Office, National Investment Council of Ukraine

“For Ukraine, IPO and selling minority shares can be a good, mild way to get private investors, who will push for effective corporate governance, efficiency while the state, while government will not be able to put political pressure. It could be a good compromise.”

Maksym Nefyodov, First deputy Minister of economic development and trade 

“All the attempts to ensure decent corporate governance have been unsuccessful. It’s a never-ending battle with low chances for success. So I see no other choice but to privatize. I think the longer we wait, the more problems we get because most of the largest companies, which we can privatize are already surrounded by lots of vested interests, litigation, and other problems.

Yuriy Vitrenko, Chief Commercial Officer, Naftogaz Ukraine

“Naftogaz has publicly announced its attempt to do an IPO. In 2 years we will be fully ready to do an IPO on one of major international markets. We are not suggesting that Naftogaz should be sold 100 percent in one goal, it should be a gradual IPO. But privatization should have reasons behind it and there should be capital market, which will decide how to allocate resources.” 

Fabrizio Zucca, Professor, SDA Bocconi School of Management

“Italy started the process of privatization around 70s. Privatization first came for industry and banks, while for bigger corporations it was made mostly through IPO (initial public offering). I think that privatization can be also a way for Ukraine to attract investment.” 

Recorded version of the discussion is available here 
Photos from the event on our Facebook page

The discussion is a part of #UkraineReforms project, joint project of Wilfried Martens Centre for European Studies, Kyiv School of Economics, Reanimation Package of Reforms and Stronger Together, which was launched in the end of 2014 to bring European expertise for support of reforms in Ukraine.