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April 9, 2013

Ukraine, Japan Agree on Projects Worth Under Half-Billion USD

Kyiv, April 9, 2013. Ukraine and Japan approved 536 joint projects, which will be implemented with the funds Ukraine acquired by selling its emission reduction commitments under the Kyoto Protocol. The total cost of the agreed projects reaches USD 475 million, announced Ukraine’s Minister of Environment and Natural Resources Oleh Proskuryakov.

As of April 1, 2013, the two parties managed to agree on mutual projects in all 24 oblasts (administrative units) of Ukraine, stated Oleh Proskuryakov at a press conference in Kyiv. He also pointed out that USD 71.4 million have already been dispersed by the government to fund the Ukraine-Japan projects.

As many as 500 projects of thermal rehabilitation of social infrastructure are scheduled for completion by September 1, 2013. The rest of the projects are expected to be finalized in 2014.

In order to implement one of the joint projects, Ukraine has already signed an agreement with Japan's Sumitomo Corporation for the supply of 1,200 hybrid cars – Toyota Prius – for Ukrainian police. Ukraine’s Ministry of Interior will obtain the cars in late September 2013.

The Kyoto Protocol is a set of procedures of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change. The Protocol was initially adopted in 1997 in Kyoto, Japan, and entered into force in 2005; it was signed and ratified by 191 states. Its duration ended in late 2012, however, in 2011 in Durban, SAR, representatives from 194 countries agreed to extend the validity of the Protocol. In 2012, the protocol was extended until 2020 by 200 countries. Ukraine, along with the majority of European countries, joined the extended protocol, while Canada, Japan, New Zealand and Russia decided to exit the Protocol, joining the U.S., India and China, who have not ratified the agreement in the first place.

Remarkably, in 2011 alone the State Environmental Investment Agency of Ukraine sold over 6,712 million tons of CO2 emission reduction units to Spain, Switzerland, and the UK. The three countries purchased the emission units within the framework of the Kyoto Protocol as Ukraine reduced its own carbon dioxide emissions after implementing the CO2 emission reduction program. In 2009 Ukraine’s total CO2 emission amounted to 374 million tons which equaled 40.2 percent of the 1990 base level.