It is the first and the largest event of such level to be held in the east of Ukraine. In attendance were the leaders of the country, Ukrainian and foreign businessmen. More than 350 guests and representatives of 50 international and national institutions have arrived to participate in the forum.

President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky spoke at the opening ceremony. He said that Ukraine was now at a crossroads when she has to choose either to be destroyed or become stronger.

“We are Apple that has been launched in a garage. We are Lance Armstrong who has been diagnosed cancer. But we know that even the darkest night is always followed by daybreak”, said the President.

Zelensky stated his opinion that Ukraine needed huge investments to stimulate economic growth. He expressed hope that the Mariupol forum would become the starting point for a stable economic growth in this country.

“We will create equal and fair rules of the game for all. To finish with corruption, we will reform the law-enforcement agencies. On top of that, we will conduct a real and not a ‘façade’ reform of the judicial system. Privatization, deregulation, a State in a Smartphone all these initiatives will make it possible for businesses to develop to the fullest”, underscored the President.

Speaking about the country’s priorities, the head of State mentioned the war in Donbas which can be finished only by a diplomatic way.

“To accomplish the set tasks, Ukraine needs to have a strong position and support. To be a State that is respected and heard. To be prosperous, independent and successful”, said the President.

According to Volodymyr Zelensky, Ukraine will have to become such a country and that’s actually the reason why he went into politics.

“Moreover, that’s why you are here today. After all, peace in Ukraine is a guarantee of security and stability in Europe and the world, Ukraine’s success is your success”, noted the President addressing the forum.

Volodymyr Zelensky has complete confidence in that Ukraine stands on the threshold of a major breakthrough in the economy, the fact which is confirmed by the major economic indicators. “Ukraine’s economy has shown 4.6% of a real growth in the GDP during the second quarter of the current year”, – he informed. – “Thus, international institutions’ prognoses concerning economic growth in Ukraine next year have considerably improved”. Today, Ukraine has risen by seven points in the “Doing Business-2020” rating of investment attractiveness.

“International agencies have increased our credit rating to ‘stable’ and ‘positive’. At the same time, the National Bank of Ukraine has lowered discount rate by one percent. This is an important signal of a slowdown in inflation which will promote a reduction in borrowings”, Zelensky said.

He expressed his confidence that Ukraine was becoming a stable and predictable market that offers considerable opportunities for doing business. President Zelensky also said, “Add to all this a conducive climate environment, a favourable geography, an inexhaustible agricultural and industrial potential and our major resource hardworking and talented people”.

The newspaper Holos Ukrainy