- Title: Political novice Honcharuk appointed Ukraine PM, to focus on economy
- Date: 29th August 2019
- Summary: KIEV, UKRAINE (AUGUST 29, 2019) (REUTERS) UKRAINIAN PRESIDENT, VOLODYMYR ZELENSKIY, WALKING TO PODIUM AS LAWMAKERS APPLAUD ZELENSKIY ON SCREEN VARIOUS OF LAWMAKERS LISTENING ZELENSKIY SPEAKING AT PODIUM (SOUNDBITE) (Ukrainian) UKRAINIAN PRESIDENT, VOLODYMYR ZELENSKIY, SAYING: "Now, it is already absolutely clear that the parliament of this convention will make it into history. But there is one question only: in what way? You have a chance to be featured in history as a parliament who did an extraordinary job, who fulfilled all promises which its predecessors failed to deliver within the past 28 years, as a parliament without brawls - and I beg you - without no-shows - I beg you - without piano voting - entire Ukraine is begging you - but as a parliament with constructive daily hard work for the benefit of the Ukrainian people." LAWMAKER IN PARLIAMENT CHAMBER (SOUNDBITE) (Ukrainian) UKRAINIAN PRESIDENT, VOLODYMYR ZELENSKIY, SAYING: "Or you will make it into history as a parliament which existed for the shortest period of time - one year only." (LAWMAKERS APPLAUDING OFF CAMERA) LAWMAKERS APPLAUDING LAWMAKERS RISING IN APPLAUSE TO ZELENSKIY PHOTOGRAPHER CANDIDATE FOR UKRAINIAN PRIME MINISTER, OLEKSIY HONCHARUK, WALKING TO PODIUM (SOUNDBITE) (Ukrainian) CANDIDATE FOR UKRAINIAN PRIME MINISTER POSITION, OLEKSIY HONCHARUK, SAYING: "We have over 10 million people living below the poverty line, we have a war in the east, and we still have corruption despite the above-mentioned circumstances. We still did not overcome the situation when someone comes to power in order to steal money. This must end and we will do it. No one will steal money in the new government." (LAWMAKERS APPLAUDING OFF CAMERA) ZELENSKIY LISTENING (SOUNDBITE) (Ukrainian) CANDIDATE FOR UKRAINIAN PRIME MINISTER POSITION, OLEKSIY HONCHARUK, SAYING: "It is very important for us to change the attitude towards Ukraine in the world. It is about reputation. The country's credit rating speaks for itself. These speculative titles do not insult, but it is a result of our joint work during the past decades. It must be changed as soon as possible and the foundation for such changes must be cooperation with our international partners and creditors. That is why the IMF mission will be in Kiev in a few weeks and we will negotiate a new three- or four-year cooperation program." SCREEN SHOWING LAWMAKERS VOTING FOR PRIME MINISTER'S CANDIDACY HONCHARUK APPLAUDING
- Embargoed: 12th September 2019 17:57
- Keywords: Ukraine parliament president Volodymyr Zelenskiy Oleksiy Honcharuk prime minister government appointments vote Servant of the People
- Location: KIEV, UKRAINE
- City: KIEV, UKRAINE
- Country: Ukraine
- Topics: Government/Politics
- Reuters ID: LVA001AU9VOSN
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: Political novice and presidential protege Oleksiy Honcharuk was appointed as Ukraine's prime minister on Thursday (August 29), and said economic reforms aimed at accelerating growth would be the focus of his premiership.
Lawmakers, reconvening after a national election in July, ratified the 35-year-old lawyer's nomination, presented earlier in the day by President Volodymyr Zelenskiy - who warned the legislature that it risked being dissolved if it dragged its feet over reforms.
Deputies also appointed lawyer and activist Andriy Zahorodnyuk as defense minister.
Honcharuk became a deputy head of Zelenskiy's office in May, having previously led a non-governmental organization focused on economic reform and worked as an adviser to the Ecology Ministry. He ran for parliament in 2014 but did not get elected.
He told the lawmakers that speed and successful economic reforms would be the focus of his cabinet.
He also said that Ukraine would continue to cooperate with the International Monetary Fund and start talks over a new program - which would replace an existing $3.9 billion standby deal - in a few weeks.
The IMF helped the economy recover from a sharp recession and currency crash following the outbreak of hostilities between government and pro-Russian separatist forces in eastern Ukraine in 2014.
Separately, CNN cited sources as saying on Thursday that U.S. President Donald Trump is heavily considering blocking $250 million of dollars in military aid to Ukraine intended to help fight invading forces from Russia.
Reuters could not immediately confirm the report.
Zelenskiy, a comedian-turned-politician, became president in April in a landslide election win that transformed Ukraine's political landscape.
His party, Servant of the People, won 254 of 450 seats in parliamentary elections in July, the first time a ruling president's party has won an absolute majority in the legislature and the right to independently form a government.
On Thursday he cautioned lawmakers that he could dissolve the chamber if saw no progress.
Zelenskiy also nominated former Ukrainian ambassador to NATO Vadym Prystaiko as foreign minister, and lawyer and activist Andriy Zahorodnyuk as defense minister.
(Production: Yuriy Muravyov, Serhiy Takhmazov, Margaryta Chornokondratenko)
- Copyright Holder: REUTERS
- Copyright Notice: (c) Copyright Thomson Reuters 2019. Open For Restrictions - http://about.reuters.com/fulllegal.asp
- Usage Terms/Restrictions: None