Trading on the PFTS exchange was sluggish last week, with little movement in either direction. In major domestic news, local investors continue to focus on the promised farmland reform, with an announcement that the land market will open in October 2020. The absence of a land market has favored big agribusinesses and hurt small-scale farmers who are unable to use the land they own as collateral to borrow money. Ukraine has 43mn hectares of arable land, about 11 million hectares of which are state-owned. The World Bank estimated that the country could see additional GDP growth of 1.5 percentage points yearly if the land sale ban is lifted.
The PFTS rose by 1.4% to 517 points after being under pressure for the last three weeks. CentrEnergo (CEEN) recovered 1.9% to close at UAH 10.30 on information that the Honcharuk government has appointed a new head of the State Property Fund (SPF) who is expected to push large scale privatizations in the country, including a sale of the state’s 78% stake in CentrEnergo. Raiffeisen Bank Aval (BAVL) was flat at 30.60 kopecks while the second-tier name Krukiv Wagon (KVBZ) surged by 8.6% to UAH 15.70.
London-listed Ukrainian stocks finished mixed, with MHP (MHPC) rebounding by 4.4% to USD 8.94 while Ferrexpo (FXPO) slid 8.8% to GBp 186 per share. Natural gas producer Regal Petroleum (RPT) gained 6.1% to GBp 35.00, but remains far below the stock’s 2019 maximum of GBp 61.00 seen in March.
Warsaw-listed Kernel (KER) and Astarta (AST) were both lower, with the former losing 1.0% to close at PLN 43.20.
The hryvnia was impressive once again last week, gaining 1.5% against the dollar to 24.42 UAH/USD. Although the National Bank was purchasing foreign currencies on the interbank market, it did not do so in sufficient volume to prevent the hryvnia’s appreciation.
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