Sergiy Leshchenko, UP
While the voting for Pavlo Klimkin as the head diplomat was supported by all fractions, and Vitaliy Yarema was appointed without the regionals’ votes, Valeriya Gontareva became head of the National Bank after a small scandal “Batkivshchina” tried to start.
Earlier, this Wednesday evening, at the session of the fractions of “Batkivshchina” the members of the Parliament started mass raising the issue of the unacceptability of voting for Gontareva. Lviv members of the Parliament first argued that it is unfair in regard to their compatriot Stepan Kubic, who has been head of the National Bank until now.
Others joined them, saying that Gontareva serviced Poroshenko’s corporation before and cannot be an independent regulator now, as Poroshenko has stocks in the bank business. In sum, the fraction dissembled with the decision not to vote for the new head of the NBU.
Though Yulia Timoshenko, present at the assembly, asked the MP’s not to obstruct Poroshenko, everyone was sure that she was behind this affair.
On Thursday morning, Prime Minister Arseniy Yatseniuk came to the “Batkivshchina” MP’s and started convincing them to depose Kubiv, as the latter asked for resignation himself. In sum, they agreed to re-examine the fraction’s decision – the refusal to support Gontareva was replaced with “free voting.”
And only when the voting for Gontareva began in the session hall, the leader of the fraction Sergiy Sobolev gave the order to support her candidacy for the NBU. As the MP’s were explained later, Timoshenko’s trustee Ivan Kyrylenko called her before the examination of the issue and convinced to vote in approval – he discovered that Gontareva would pass even without “Batkivshchina” votes.
It turned out that the candidate for the post of the head of the NBU met with the Party of Regions in the morning and got their support.
“We raised two issues with her,” says a source in the regionals’ fraction. “She said that the exchange rate will be flexible, as this is a demand of the IMF. And secondly, what interested us was to rid the National Bank of the corrupt feeder, when they take bribes for licences to open accounts outside of the country and the purchase of foreign assets. Gontareva promised that she will solve these issues.”
In conclusion, Gontareva was approved as head of the National Bank with the best result of the day – 349 MP’s voted for her.
The new head banker of Ukraine Valeriya Gontareva has 20 years’ experience in the financial sphere and two diplomas: “optical-electronic equipment construction” from the Kyiv Polytechnical Institute and “international economics” from the Kyiv National Economical University. She graduated these two establishments with 10 years’ difference – in 1987 and 1997.
After receiving her first, Soviet diploma, Gontareva worked as a junior scientific associate in the Ukrainian Centre for Meteorology and Standardisation for two years, and between 1989 and 1993 she worked as an engineering constructor of the institute “Giprostrommashina.”
The period between July 1993 and March 1994 is not described in Gontarev’s employment book, and starting March 1st, 1994 her career in the new plane begins.
Gontareva starts working as an economist in the Ukrainian Inter-Bank Currency Stock Exchange.
She worked there for two years, and in 1996 she becomes the head of the resource management department in the French bank Societe Generale in Ukraine.
She worked at the bank until 2001, and later Gontareva goes to work in the Dutch ING Bank in Ukraine.
Two months later she becomes the deputy head of the bank’s board, and in 2007 she becomes a first deputy for half a year.
During her participation in the leadership of ING Bank, she will become famous among Ukrainian bankers.
In December 2007 Gontareva become head of the company created by herself, which manages assets, “Investment Capital of Ukraine,” which becomes one of the most successful in the market.
Essentially, Petro Poroshenko was one of the clients of Gontareva as the investment banker.
In June 2009 her company gives financial advice during the restructuring of debt of 100 million UAH of “Podillya Food Company” from Kryzhopol, which is part of Poroshenko’s UkrPromInvest.
Two years later Gontareva’s company becomes Poroshenko’s financial advisor when buying the German company Interstarch Group for 50 million, which owns a modified starch production plant in Germany.
Having become head of the National Bank with a high result of 349 “ayes,” Gontareva got freedom, having rid the MP lobbyists of the argument that it was their vote that was deciding – and that she owes her post to some oligarch group, whom she now has to be grateful to.
And the first person to be dissatisfied with such independence of the regulator is Igor Kolomoyskiy’s “PrivatBank,” which received record refinancing in Stepan Kubiv’s time.
There is an erroneous opinion that Minister Andriy Deshchitsya was fired from the post because of the famous song of the football fans about the Russian President Vladimir Putin. In reality the decision to replace Deshchitsya with Klimkin was approved long before the incident near the embassy on Povitroflotskiy prospect.
However Russian propaganda is trying to present the choice in favour of Klimkin as Poroshenko’s gift to the Kremlin. “Ukrainian MFA given to a Russian,” writes gazeta.ru, beginning the article with a template made by Russian ideologists: “The prognoses regarding the swift deposition of acting Minister of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine Andriy Deshchitsya, who cursed at Vladimir Putin, were confirmed.”
In reality, Pavlo Klimkin has been the face of Ukraine’s European integration in the recent years: he was head of the Ukrainian delegation at the talks with the EU regarding the Association agreement.
He considered this document an entry ticket to the European Union. However the work of Klimkin the technocrat became a hostage of the political situation during Yanukovych’s time.
As deputy Minister, Klimkin was forced to frequently comment on Timoshenko’s case, repeating the President’s theses regarding the imperfection of Ukraine’s criminal legislation and hoping that Timoshenko would be subject to amnesty.
The failure to integrate into Europe, which was declared in November 2013, was a personal disappointment to Klimkin, who dedicated many months of his life to this issue. It is Pavlo Klimkin’s signature that has been placed on the pages of the Association Agreement with the EU, which he ratified it as deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs who was responsible for the talks process.
Pavlo Klimkin was born in 1967 in the city of Kursk.
He graduated from the Moscow Physics and Technical Institute, Department of Aerophysics and Space Investigation.
He received the specialty diploma in “executive mathematics and physics.”
His first employments in 1990-1991 have to do with Department #10 in the Paton Institute for Electrical Soldering, which engages in “physical and chemical processes in soldering.”
But on September 15th, 1993, Klimkin resigns and goes to work in the MFA as the attaché in the department of limiting strategic armament and nuclear disarmament.
“It was a complete accident. I was about to go to the US to prepare my doctorate. A friend of a friend worked in the MFA at the moment and knowing my background, offered a chance to try myself in disarmament. The idea did not make me weak at the knees, but then I got the drive and I am still here. And I am not sorry, regardless of what my friends who work in the US have said,” Klimkin shares his memories with “Ukrainska Pravda.”
Klimkin works in disarmament until 1997. His manager was the future Minister Kostyantyn Gryshchenko, who will make Klimkin his deputy many years later.
In March 1997 Klimkin becomes third secretary of the Ukrainian Embassy in Germany – at the moment Gryshchenko worked as deputy Minister.
In 2000-2002 Klimkin, after his return, worked in the MFA in the department that dealt with nuclear security and scientific cooperation.
In 2002 he holds the office of the head of the department of economical cooperation in the EU Headquarters – later this will become his specialty, which will finally drive him to the peak of his diplomatic career.
The future Minister worked there for 2,5 years, and in September 2004 he becomes advisor to the Ukrainian Embassy in Great Britain – all of this in times of Minister Kostyantyn Gryshchenko.
In March 2008 Klimkin becomes head of the department of the European Union. He held this office when the ministry was headed by Petro Poroshenko in 2009. The future President encouraged Klimkin several times: in August 2009 he was awarded with the merit diploma of the Cabinet of Ministers on petition of the Ministry, and in December 2009 Minister Poroshenko announced MFA’s gratitude to Klimkin.
In March 2010 Klimkin becomes deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Kostyantyn Gryshchenko, and in May 2011 the Minister grants him leadership of the entire MFA apparatus.
In July 2012 Klimin becomes Ukrainian ambassador in Germany. After Nataliya Zarudna, who worked as ambassador without speaking German fluently, Klimkin, with his good German, was greeted there with open arms. He had regular face-to-face meetings with the head of the German MFA, as well as Parliament members from various fractions, the leadership of profiling committees of the Bundestag and the media.
As a representative of Ukraine, which at the time was under Yanukovych’s leadership, Klimkin retained sober thinking and healthy skepticism regarding the President.
The author of these lines has direct experience of talking to Klimkin, when he in 2012 was not afraid to meet on the territory of the diplomatic representation with a group of journalists, all of which were against Yanukovych, in Berlin for the Goethe-Institut program.
The ambassador spent several hours speaking to the press off the record, which after this went to protest Klimkin’s direct manager – the Minister of Foreign Affairs Kozhara, who arrived in Berlin on that same day.
Another diplomat would have had a heart attack because of such a turn of events – as all of the information from the embassy was sent to Kyiv via special service channels.
Klimkin’s wife, Natalia, is also a diplomat. She has appointments in Berlin and the Hague.
At the moment Natalia Klimkina holds the office of the first secretary of the Ukrainian Embassy in the Netherlands and is responsible for political issues and culture.
The appointment of the Prosecutor General was made without the support of the Party of Regions, though several people from this fraction have notified the leadership beforehand that they would vote for Vitaly Yarema regardless of the orders – it is more important to have good relations with the Prosecutor General than party discipline.
The appointment of Vitaly Yarema signified Petro Poroshenko’s will to have a Prosecutor General outside of the system, not connected with the circle of employment with colleagues and personally loyal to the President.
Yarema’s entire biography has to do with the police.
Vitaliy Yarema became the responsible operative officer of criminal investigation of the Dniprovskiy district in Kyiv in 1990, before graduating the Kyiv High School of Police. Having received an “out of office” diploma, Yarema became the deputy head of criminal investigations in all of Kyiv.
Yarema worked in the leadership of criminal investigation between 1993 and 1995, having held the post during the flourishing of criminal groups in the capital.
In 1999 Yarema becomes part of the MIA central apparatus as first deputy of the headquarters of criminal investigation. During Minister Yuriy Smirnov’s time, Yarema becomes head of the police of the Lviv Railway, and is later returned to Kyiv.
During the Orange Revolution Yarema was first deputy of the National Ukrainian Criminal Investigation, and then, with Petro Poroshenko’s efforts, is appointed to the Kyiv police in February 2005.
Yarema worked for the entire five years of Viktor Yushchenko’s presidency there.
After Viktor Yanukovych was elected, he retired, and in 2012 become a member of the Parliament, haven won with Poroshenko’s support in a district of the Darnitsky rayon in Kyiv.
Yarema participated actively in Maidan events and became part of Yatseniuk’s government as the only nominee from Poroshenko’s quota, without any special powers.
Yarema inherited dozens of criminal cases from Prosecutor General Makhnitskiy, all of which were opened against officials of Yanukovych’s era, as well as human resources appointed along the entire Prosecutor General line on the quota political principle.
With the participation of the authoritative activist under the nickname “Pups,” who was appointed by “Svoboda” party to silently curate the Office of the Prosecutor General.
To wit, “Pups” was wanted as part of a criminal group, and Yarema was not scared to notify the journalists.
It is expected that Yarema will not have full power he is getting now for long. Earlier in the evening President Poroshenko met with UDAR fraction, and did not hide the intent to rid the Office of the Prosecutor General of investigative functions, which are to be given to the State Investigation Bureau. The right to appoint the candidate for the leadership of the new law enforcement block is to remain with Poroshenko.
Translated by Mariya Shcherbinina