US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo discussed with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy US concerns over China’s attempts to acquire a Ukrainian engine manufacturer.
The US State Department said in a statement on the matter that in a telephone conversation with the Ukrainian president on August 26, Pompeo expressed concern over “malicious” Chinese investments in Ukraine, including an intention to buy Motor Sich.
The United States has previously lobbied against the sale of this strategic manufacturer of the company and its technologies to China.
The outgoing US ambassador to Ukraine said late last year that American companies were exploring the possibility of purchasing Motor Sich, one of the world’s leading manufacturers of aircraft engines for the defense industry.
“There are serious American and other companies interested in Motor Sich,” Ambassador William Taylor said in an interview with Ukrainian media last December before leaving office on January 2.
He did not disclose the names of American companies.
Motor Sich is privately owned by its general director Vyacheslav Boguslaev. He reportedly agreed to sell most of his shares to Chinese companies, but the deal has yet to be approved by the Ukrainian government.
According to the State Department, Pompeo and Zelensky also discussed the situation in Belarus, Ukraine’s efforts to combat COVID-19, attempts to reach a diplomatic settlement to Russia’s aggression in eastern Ukraine, and the restoration of Ukraine’s sovereignty in Crimea.
Pompeo also congratulated Ukraine on the country’s Independence Day on August 24 and stressed that the United States will continue to support the Ukrainian people “to advance the rule of law, promote economic growth, attract foreign investment and root out the rampant corruption that holds Ukraine’s potential.”