Investment management firm BlackRock has laid the groundwork for visits to Ukraine, continuing efforts between Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy and BlackRock Chief Executive Larry Fink discussing the rebuilding of Ukraine, which the World Bank estimates will cost at least $349bn via investor-backed reconstruction funds.
“Volodymyr Zelenskyy and Larry Fink agreed to focus in the near term on coordinating the efforts of all potential investors and participants in the reconstruction of our country, channeling investment into the most relevant and impactful sectors of the Ukrainian economy,” the Ukrainian government said on its website.
“During the conversation, it was emphasized that certain BlackRock leaders plan to visit Ukraine in the new year,” the statement added.
Plans are being finalized for executives from BlackRock to visit Ukraine in the new year. Zelenskyy also announced Ukraine will attend the next year’s WEF Summit in Switzerland Jan. 16-20, though it did not say whether he will be attending in-person or virtually.
“I have spoken with the head of the world’s largest investment fund, BlackRock, and have been assured yet again that businesses from the developed world are ready to invest in our recovery,” the Ukrainian media quoted Zelensky, as reported by Interfax. “Company specialists are already helping Ukraine structure the Recovery Fund.”
“We are preparing to partake in the World Economic Forum in Davos. The posture and prospects of Ukraine will be presented there,” he added.
BlackRock spokesperson Marc Bubeck deferred comment on the memorandum of understanding that BlackRock announced last month.
A BlackRock spokesperson told Yahoo Finance the call carries work already underway under the existing MOU forward.
The agreement is intended to create opportunities for public and private investors alike to participate in future rebuilding and rehabilitation of Ukraine’s economy, according to a statement from BlackRock.
Investment management firm BlackRock and the World Economic Forum are both elite economic vehicles; BlackRock is the largest money manager in the world, with $8 trillion of assets, and the WEF plays a central role in global economic planning and development.
Russia’s invasion of Ukraine entered its eleventh month last weekend, with Ukraine expressing hopes of holding a peace summit before the end of February.
Estimates say that half of all Ukrainians will be living in poverty by the end of next year, as Ukraines GDP is expected to fall 35%-40%, and its budget deficit is running at $5 billion per month, according to The New York Times.
The war-torn nations economic burden remains uncertain following Russian President Vladimir Putin’s deployment of troops in February.
As of November, the Kyiv Economic Institute estimated the destruction to Ukraine’s infrastructure caused by the Russian war on the country was about $136 billion.
Estimates by the World Bank and European Commission suggest that reconstruction costs may be close to $349 billion, according to The Financial Times.
Russian forces intensified mortar and artillery attacks Wednesday in the newly-liberated city of Kherson, in southern Ukraine, the Ukrainian army said, also pressuring along the front lines to the east.