World Bank declares Ukraine “one of the poorest countries in the region”


WASHINGTON – In terms of GDP per capita, Ukraine remains one of the poorest countries in the region – at the level of Moldova, Armenia and Georgia. This is stated in the study of the World Bank. In Ukraine, per capita GDP is about three times lower than in Poland, despite an equal level of income in 1990. To achieve the indicators of modern Poland, Ukraine at the current growth rate will need 50 years, analysts of the international organization say.

Ukraine’s economy grew by 3.3% in 2018, thanks to a good harvest and a significant increase in consumption, according to a World Bank survey. However, investor confidence was restrained by the uneven progress of reforms, uncertainty associated with elections and high lending costs.

“In order to accelerate economic growth, Ukraine needs rapid progress on key unfinished reforms,” said Satu Kahkonen, World Bank Country Director for Belarus, Moldova and Ukraine. “This includes opening the agricultural land market, dividing the energy sector, strengthening the management of state banks, making progress in fighting corruption, and ensuring financial stability.”

Ukraine faces macroeconomic vulnerability due to large obligations to pay off public debt in 2019–2021 and pressure on current expenditures. Although Ukraine has made progress over the past five years, the economy is still limited by incomplete reforms that lead to low productivity and excessive dependence on the export of goods. According to analysts of the bank, the rate of economic growth in Ukraine remains too low to reduce poverty and achieve the level of income of neighboring European countries.

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