During his working visit to the United States, President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelenskyy met with top investors, representatives of venture funds and Silicon Valley accelerators.
"Our meeting here in Silicon Valley is a great opportunity to discuss the prospects for the development of the IT sector and innovations in Ukraine. Our country is rapidly transforming and adopting innovations. Over the past year, we have managed to make a real breakthrough in the digital sphere. At the same time, we still need to do a lot," the head of state said opening the event.
The President said that over the past two years, Ukraine has made a huge leap towards creating a digital state, and the Ukrainian IT sector has significant potential, especially in human resources.
Zelenskyy is convinced that Ukraine also has a high potential for developing its own products, and it is necessary to provide conditions for implementing it.
"For that, we are creating one of the best tax and legal frameworks for IT companies – Diia City," he said.
According to the President, thanks to its implementation, the income of the IT industry in Ukraine in three to five years may increase from $6 billion to $16.5 billion per year. The share of the Ukrainian IT sector would expand to 10% of GDP. The number of jobs in the IT industry is expected to grow by 450,000 by 2025.
Zelenskyy assured that Ukraine will exercise as much as possible assistance to foreign and Ukrainian investors. The special legal framework is aimed at creating companies in our country with a capitalization of more than $100 million, which will be residents of Ukraine.
Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Digital Transformation Mykhailo Fedorov said that the Ukrainian Startup Fund has been operating in the country for more than a year, and the state has already funded more than 100 projects. It is also planned to create a Fund of Funds, when the state not only invests in startups, but also sends money to private funds.
The minister said that Ukraine is developing a virtual asset market, has one of the world's largest blockchain developer communities, is creating an attractive jurisdiction for Ukrainian and foreign crypto companies, is modernizing the payment market, which will even allow the National Bank to issue digital currency.
Representatives of investors and venture funds noted the high level of Ukrainian IT specialists and their huge potential.
Zelenskyy said that the state is ready to address the concerns of investors and cooperate with them, and Ukraine is very flexible in changing legislation and will facilitate investments.
"Ukraine is open for investments in the IT sector in cooperation with U.S. businesses. We want your business to be interested not only in the possibilities of opening representative offices in Ukraine, but also in investing in Ukrainian innovative products," the President said, addressing the event participants.
In particular, during a meeting with the management of Lyft, one of the largest transport companies in the United States and Canada, Zelenskyy thanked its co-founder and President John Zimmer for his emphasis on the Ukrainian market and selecting it among other countries when opening the R&D center (Lyft Engineering).
At a meeting with representatives of the Stellar Development Foundation, which develops the open-source financial solutions network, the President of Ukraine expressed the hope that in the near future this institution will see opportunities to expand its activities in our country, expand its team and, possibly, open an R&D center.
"After all, Ukraine is now the best magnet for blockchain and crypto fraud in Europe. And one of the vectors of development of Ukraine's digital economy is the launch and development of a legal innovative market for virtual assets," the President said.