4 Mar 2020 22:00

Rada endorses Shmyhal as Ukrainian PM

KYIV. March 4 (Interfax) - The Verkhovna Rada has appointed Denys Shmyhal Ukrainian prime minister.

A total of 291 deputies voted for him following his nomination by President Volodymyr Zelensky at an extraordinary parliamentary session on Wednesday.

Earlier on Wednesday, the Rada accepted Oleksiy Honcharuk's resignation as Ukrainian prime minster. Honcharuk was appointed on August 29, 2019.

In Honcharuk's government, Shmyhal had been deputy prime minister and regional development minister since February 4, 2020.

Shmyhal, aged 44, graduated from the Lviv Polytechnic National University with a degree in management in the production sector in 1997 and defended his thesis in economy at the Ukrainian Academy of Sciences' Regional Research Institute in 2003.

Early in his career, he worked at several Lviv enterprises, staring as a manager of the O'Key private enterprise in 1994, then working as an accountant at Electronbank, and then transferring to the Lviv Bus Plant as an accountant in 1997. He worked within its structures until 2006, rising to the position of director for the economic and strategic development.

He transferred to investment business in 2006, where he worked as economic director of the Komfort Invest company owned by Volodymyr Kadushkevich until 2008 and then as director general of MEEST corporation owner Rostyslav Kisil's Rosan-Invest for another year.

In 2009, he first started working in the authorities becoming the head of the main department for economy, investments, trade and industry of the Lviv regional administration, while it was headed by IDS co-owner Mykola Kmyt, Ukrhazbank co-owner Vasyl Horbal, former Ukrainian Railways director general Mykhailo Kostiuk, and former parliamentarian and prosecutor Viktor Shemchuk. Shmyhal worked in the regional administration for four years with a brief break.

In 2014, Shmyhal worked as deputy head of the main department of the Lviv region's Revenue Ministry for over than six months and returned to the private sector in 2015 by becoming an advisor to the president first and subsequently director general of the ice cream manufactured Lvivkholod.

In 2017, he joined the Zakhidenergo energy producing company first as the deputy director for social issues and then, since early 2018 also as a director of the Burshtyn TPP.

Following the presidential election in 2019, Shmyhal competed for the position of the head of the Lviv regional administration and became one of the three main candidates, and was appointed the head of the neighboring Ivano-Frankivsk regional administration in August 2019.

The Verkhovna Rada appointed him deputy prime minister and minister for regional development in early February 2020; at the time, Shmyhal was introduced as the most successful head of the regional administration.