"Now is the time to invest in Ukraine" says Kyiv's Mayor Vitaly Klitschko at MIPIM
A popular Ukrainian real estate show, MIPIM, was held over the weekend in Kyiv and turnout to the event exceeded expectations. Over 22,000 visitors came from not just Ukraine but a record 93 different countries.
Conspicuous by their absence however, were the Russian stand which have featured heavily in past shows.
Among visitors was Kyiv mayor Vitaly Klitschko, also known as a Dr. Iron Fist on account of having a PhD in sports science and being a heavyweight boxer prior to his political career.
Klitschko, a well known pro-Western politician and supporter of current president Petro Poroshenko, gave a rousing speech at MIPIM on Sunday explaining his goals as mayor of Kyiv.
The 6'7" city mayor told listeners that his goals were to clamp down on corruption in Kyiv, transform investment in the city and form closer investment links with Europe.
"We Ukrainians are Europeans. Our mentality, our history and geographically we are part of Europe. But we are far away from the European standard of life and this is what we want to change," he said in his speech.
Ukraine's current problems with Russia and eastern Ukraine make Klitschko's job a hard one but the mayor points out the opportunities that lie in times of adversity.
"Some people are of course skeptical [about investment in Ukraine] but many others are viewing the situation in Ukraine as a time to invest. Because the markets are down and our currency has been hit hard, there is the opportunity to buy real estate and projects at below market prices.
We have so many key projects in real estate, infra structure and transport. For business minded people, right now is the time to invest if they believe in Ukraine and if they are ready to take the risks now."
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