05:56 GMT28 October 2020
Listen Live
    Get short URL

    US Ambassador Geoffrey Pyatt said that building a vibrant defense industry first requires that Ukraine presses ahead on critical reforms, tackles corruption and works to meet NATO standards.

    WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — US defense companies can assist Ukraine become leading exporter of military equipment and technology, but Kiev must first eliminate corruption and remove unpredictable legal and political risks from its business environment, US Ambassador Geoffrey Pyatt stated on Thursday.

    "Ukraine has said that it wants to become a major defense exporter," Pyatt said. "I am very glad to see at this conference today a large number of US defense industry representatives… They have the ability to bring to you best-in-the-world technology and their demonstrated expertise at integrating with other international partners."

    However, building a vibrant defense industry first requires that Ukraine presses ahead on critical reforms, tackles corruption and works to meet NATO standards, Pyatt explained.

    Ukraine began rebuilding its armed forces following the 2014 decision by its former territory, Crimea, to rejoin Russia via a popular referendum.

    Since, the United States has provided $266 million dollars in security and defense-related assistance to Ukraine, with another $335 million in training and equipment earmarked for what Pyatt called, "our Ukrainian partners."

    Pyatt further noted that the goal for Ukraine’s military in 2016 is to move beyond emergency responses to moves by Russia’s military, and focus on defense cooperation with the United States in order to establish NATO-standard military structures.

    Russia has repeatedly warned that NATO’s attempts to expand on its borders, as well as more recently amass troops and equipment, constitute provocative acts that are contrary to previous agreements and can undermine regional and global stability.


    Ukrainian Army Expects ‘Timely’ Tripling of Western Assistance
    Pentagon in Close Contact With Ukraine on Next Steps in Defense Cooperation
    Expectation Vs. Reality: Ukraine Awaits US Military Aid in Months Ahead
    Parts of US Military Aid to Ukraine Outdated - Commanding General
    defense industry, Geoffrey Pyatt, Ukraine, US
    Community standardsDiscussion