Interfax Ltd. (Russian: Интерфакс) is a privately-held independent major news agency in Russia (along with state-operated TASS and RIA Novosti) and information services company headquartered in Moscow.
Interfax provides general and political news, business credit information, industry analysis, market data and business solutions for risk, compliance and credit management. The company employs over 1,000 staff in over 70 bureaus worldwide and publishes over 3,000 stories each day.
Interfax controls around 50% of the Russian corporate data market. Subscription-based business and financial intelligence contribute to the bulk of the revenues generated by Interfax with IT-analytical business solutions accounting for approximately 75% of revenue.
|Private limited company|
1st Tverskaya-Yamskaya str. 2, Moscow
(chairman and CEO)
Number of employees
Interfax was formed in September 1989, during Mikhail Gorbachev’s perestroika and glasnost period, by Mikhail Komissar and his colleagues from international broadcasting station 'Radio Moscow', a part of Soviet Gosteleradio system. Interfax originally used fax machines for text transmission, hence the company name.
By 1990, Interfax had 100 subscribers and the agency quickly began to attract the attention of conservatives within the government, who attempted to shut down the agency. This saw the agency gain prominence in major western media, a position strengthened by its coverage of the 1991 August Putsch and the collapse of the Soviet Union.
Interfax continued to expand in the 1990s, adding subsidiary agencies for financial, metallurgical, oil and gas markets, information products on agriculture, business law, transport, telecommunications, and the market data terminal 'EFiR information system' for stock market players to its general news coverage. Interfax also opened subsidiaries across the post-Soviet states, first in Ukraine (1992), Belarus (1993) and Kazakhstan (1996), and later in Azerbaijan (2002), during this time bringing the number of local offices across the regions of Russian Federation to 50.
To promote its information products abroad, Interfax opened its first company outside the former USSR in 1991, when 'Interfax America' was opened in Denver, CO. This was followed by the opening of London-based 'Interfax Europe Ltd.' (1992), 'Interfax Germany GmbH', based in Frankfurt (1993), and the 'Interfax News Service Ltd.' in Hong Kong (1998).
In 2004, Interfax created the 'SPARK system' designed to check business agents in Russia, Ukraine and Kazakhstan, Interfax also launched media monitoring services through its 'SCAN system'. In 2011, the company added London-based project, 'Interfax Global Energy', which reports on the energy markets worldwide.
In 1999, Interfax launched a rating agency in partnership with 'Moody's Investors Service' to provide rating services on the Russian market. SPARK system became the basis for a joint venture with a provider of business credit information and credit reports 'Dun & Bradstreet'.
Since 2001 Interfax has collaborated with 'Business Wire', a global leader in the distribution of corporate regulatory disclosures and press releases. Interfax now also offers consumer credit reports via a joint venture with 'Experian' and 'Sberbank of Russia'.
'Interfax Group' senior management includes Mikhail Komissar as Chairman of the Board and CEO, Vladimir Gerasimov, Executive Director and General Director of Financial and Business Information Service, Georgy Gulia, Executive Director of General Information Service.
The 17 December 2013 Ukrainian–Russian action plan is a de facto defunct proposed agreement between the President of Ukraine Viktor Yanukovych and Russian President Vladimir Putin publicized on 17 December 2013 whereby Russia would buy $15 billion of Ukrainian Eurobonds to be issued by Ukraine and that the cost of Russian natural gas supplied to Ukraine would be lowered to $268 per 1,000 cubic metres (the price was more than $400 at the time). The treaty was signed amid massive, ongoing protests in Ukraine for closer ties between Ukraine and the European Union. The interest rate on the loan would be renegotiated every three months, based on a verbal agreement between the two leaders.The proposed agreement is de facto defunct since Russia has halted its purchase of the never issued Eurobonds since the ousting of President Yanukovich of 22 February 2014 and in April 2014, the Russian natural gas discount was cancelled.Since December 2015 Ukraine defaulted on the $3 billion debt payment to Russia that was part of the action plan.2014 Kiev local election
Local elections in Kiev for the post of Mayor and members of Kiev City Council took place on 25 May 2014 as part of the 2014 Ukrainian local elections. Vitali Klitschko won the mayoral election with almost 57% of the votes, while his party the Ukrainian Democratic Alliance for Reform won 73 of the 120 seats in the Kiev City Council.The next Kiev local elections were held in October 2015.2014 Ukrainian presidential election
Presidential elections were held in Ukraine on 25 May 2014, resulting in Petro Poroshenko being elected President of Ukraine. Originally scheduled to take place on 29 March 2015, the date was changed following the 2014 Ukrainian revolution. Poroshenko won the elections with 54.7% of the votes, enough to win in a single round. His closest competitor was Yulia Tymoshenko, who emerged with 12.81% of the votes. The Central Election Commission reported voter turnout at over 60% excluding those regions not under government control. Since Poroshenko obtained an absolute majority in the first round, a run-off second ballot (on 15 June 2014) was unnecessary.The elections were not held throughout Ukraine. During the 2014 Crimean crisis, Ukraine lost control over Crimea, which was unilaterally annexed by Russia in March 2014. As a result, elections were not held in Crimea. In the Donbass region of Ukraine, only 20% of the ballot stations were open due to threats and violence by pro-Russia separatists. Of the 2,430 planned ballot stations (in Donbass), only 426 remained open for polling. The self-proclaimed Donetsk People's Republic and Luhansk People's Republic, controlling large parts of Donbass, had vowed to do everything possible to disrupt the elections on their territory.Poroshenko will serve a five-year term in office.2014 Ukrainian revolution
The Ukrainian revolution of 2014 (also known as the Euromaidan Revolution or Revolution of Dignity; Ukrainian: Революція гідності, Revoliutsiia hidnosti) took place in Ukraine in February 2014, when a series of violent events involving protesters, riot police, and unknown shooters in the capital, Kiev, culminated in the ousting of the elected Ukrainian President, Viktor Yanukovych, and the overthrow of the Ukrainian Government.The events were followed by a series of changes in Ukraine's sociopolitical system, including the formation of an interim government, the restoration of the 2004 constitution, and a call to hold an impromptu presidential election within months (the 2014 presidential election). Opposition to the revolution in some eastern and southern regions escalated into the annexation of Crimea by the Russian Federation, its later military intervention and the subsequent War in Donbass.
A December 2016 survey by the Kiev International Institute of Sociology found that thirty four percent of respondents in the government-controlled Ukraine regarded the change in power as an "illegal armed coup", while fifty six percent regarded it as a "popular revolution".2015 Ukrainian local elections
On 25 October 2015 local elections took place in Ukraine. The elections were conducted a little over a year since the 2014 snap local elections, which were only held throughout parts of the country. A second round of voting for the election of mayors in cities with more than 90,000 residents where no candidate gained more than 50% of the votes were held on 15 November 2015.Because of the ongoing conflict in East Ukraine and the February 2014 annexation of Crimea by Russia, local elections were not conducted throughout all of the administrative subdivisions of Ukraine.The highest number of seats were won by the Petro Poroshenko Bloc "Solidarity", Fatherland and Our Land parties, followed by the Opposition Bloc and the Radical Party. The Petro Poroshenko Bloc did well in the western regions, central Ukraine, and the Kherson Oblast of the south. The Opposition Bloc gained most of the votes of the south and east (except Kharkiv Oblast). In the west, Svoboda improved its performance compared with previous year's parliamentary election.A total of 132 political parties took part in the elections. The political parties contested for the 1,600 regional council seats in 22 regional parliaments, more than 10,700 local councils and mayoral seats. The voter turnout was 46.62% of the population. During the second round, the voter turnout dropped to 34.08%.All-Ukrainian Union "Fatherland"
The All-Ukrainian Union "Fatherland" or Batkivshchyna (Ukrainian: Всеукраїнське об'єднання "Батьківщина", Vseukrayins'ke Obyednannya Bat'kivshchyna) is a political party in Ukraine, led by Yulia Tymoshenko. The party has been an observer member of the European People's Party (EPP) since 2008.
As the core party of the former Yulia Tymoshenko Bloc, Batkivshchyna has been represented in the Verkhovna Rada (Ukraine's parliament) since Yulia Tymoshenko set up the parliamentary faction of the same name in March 1999. Since 2008, Batkivshchyna has been an associate member of the European People's Party. After the November 2011 banning of the participation of blocs of political parties in parliamentary elections, Batkivshchyna became a major force in Ukrainian politics independently. Yulia Tymoshenko was a political prisoner of the Yanukovych regime from 5 August 2011 until 22 February 2014. After the 2014 revolution she was rehabilitated by the Supreme Court of Ukraine and the European Court of Human Rights in the absence of crime structure. As the participation of blocks of political parties in the parliamentary elections in 2012 was banned, Batkivshchyna held a campaign called "United opposition Batkivshchyna" and advanced on its behalf members of other parties allied with Batkivshchyna. The party list was headed by the leader of the "Front of Changes" Arseniy Yatsenyuk. On 15 June 2013 the parties "Front of Changes" and "Reforms and Order" finally merged with the All-Ukrainian Union Batkivshchyna by self-liquidation. As of 31 December 2013 the parliamentary faction Batkivshchyna had 90 deputies. During the events of Euromaidan, on 22 February 2014 the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine adopted a resolution on the implementation of international obligations of Ukraine on release of former Prime Minister of Ukraine Yulia Tymoshenko.Tymoshenko started reforming the party and Batkivshchyna went into the parliamentary elections in 2014 with new members, the top five of the list included: Nadiya Savchenko, Yulia Tymoshenko, Ihor Lutsenko, Serhiy Sobolev, and Alyona Shkrum. Based on the election results, the party received 19 seats in the Ukrainian parliament: 17 according to party lists and two through the majority system. Igor Zhdanov from Batkivshchyna received the position of Youth and Sports Minister in the new government. According to the results of the 2015 local elections, Batkivshchyna came second, and thereby doubled its result in comparison to the 2014 parliamentary elections.Civil Position
Civil Position or Civic Position (Ukrainian: „Громадянська позиція“) is a political party in Ukraine registered in March 2005. It is led by former Minister of Defence of Ukraine Anatoliy Hrytsenko.Euromaidan
Euromaidan (; Ukrainian: Євромайдан, Russian: Евромайдан, Yevromaidan, literally "Euro[pean] Square") was a wave of demonstrations and civil unrest in Ukraine, which began on the night of 21 November 2013 with public protests in Maidan Nezalezhnosti ("Independence Square") in Kiev. The protests were sparked by the Ukrainian government's decision to suspend the signing of an association agreement with the European Union, instead choosing closer ties to Russia and the Eurasian Economic Union. The scope of the protests soon widened, with calls for the resignation of President Viktor Yanukovych and his government. The protests were fueled by the perception of "widespread government corruption", "abuse of power", and "violation of human rights in Ukraine". Transparency International named President Yanukovych as the top example of corruption in the world. The situation escalated after the violent dispersal of protesters on 30 November, leading to many more protesters joining. The protests led to the 2014 Ukrainian revolution.
During the Euromaidan, there were protests and clashes with police throughout Ukraine, especially at the Maidan (central square) in Kiev, which was occupied and barricaded by protesters, along with some administrative buildings, including Kiev City State Administration. On 8 December the crowd toppled a Lenin statue nearby. Protests and clashes increased in January, after the Ukrainian parliament passed a group of anti-protest laws. Protesters occupied government buildings in many regions of Ukraine. The protests climaxed in mid-February. Riot police advanced towards Maidan and clashed with protesters but did not fully occupy it. Police and activists fired live and rubber ammunition at multiple locations in Kiev. There was fierce fighting in Kiev on February 18–20, (see List of people killed during Euromaidan). (A political scientist at the University of Ottawa published a paper in 2015 hypothesizing the Kiev massacre was false flag operation, which was rationally planned and carried out with a goal of the overthrow of the government and seizure of power.) As a result of these events, the Agreement on settlement of political crisis in Ukraine was signed on 21 February 2014 by the President of Ukraine Viktor Yanukovych and the leaders of the parliamentary opposition (Vitaly Klitschko, Arseny Yatsenyuk, Oleh Tyahnybok) under the mediation of the European Union and the Russian Federation. The signing was witnessed by the Foreign Ministers of Germany and Poland, Frank-Walter Steinmeier, Radosław Sikorski, respectively, and the Director of the Continental Europe Department of the French Foreign Ministry, Eric Fournier. Vladimir Lukin, representing Russia, refused to sign the agreement.
Shortly after the agreement was signed, Yanukovych and other high government officials fled the country. Protesters gained control of the presidential administration and Yanukovych's private estate. Afterwards, the parliament removed Yanukovych from office, replaced the government with Oleksandr Turchynov, and ordered that former Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko be released from prison. Events in Kiev were soon followed by the Crimean crisis and pro-Russian unrest in Eastern Ukraine. Despite the ousting of Yanukovych, the installation of a new government, and the adoption of the Ukraine–European Union Association Agreement's political provisions, the protests have sustained pressure on the government to reject Russian influence in Ukraine.First Yatsenyuk government
The first government headed by Arseniy Yatsenyuk was created in Ukraine on 27 February 2014 in the aftermath of the Ukrainian revolution. The cabinet was formed as a coalition of the parties Batkivschyna, UDAR and Svoboda and the parliamentary factions Economic Development and Sovereign European Ukraine and other independent MPs. On 24 July 2014, UDAR and Svoboda and 19 independent MPs had exited from the coalition to pave the way for the early parliamentary elections of late October 2014. Prime Minister Yatsenyuk announced his resignation the same day, but the Verkhovna Rada declined his resignation on 31 July 2014.After the 26 October 2014 Ukrainian parliamentary election the Second Yatsenyuk Government was created.Interfax-Ukraine
The Interfax-Ukraine News Agency (Ukrainian: Інтерфакс-Україна) is a Kiev-based Ukrainian news agency founded in 1992. The company belongs to the Russian news group Interfax Information Services. The company publishes in Ukrainian, Russian and English.The company owns a 50-seat press centre.Petro Poroshenko
Petro Oleksiyovych Poroshenko (Ukrainian: Петро́ Олексі́йович Пороше́нко, pronounced [pɛˈtrɔ ɔlɛkˈsʲijɔwɪtʃ pɔrɔˈʃɛnkɔ]; born 26 September 1965) is the fifth and current President of Ukraine (excluding acting president Oleksandr Turchynov), in office since 2014. He served as the Minister of Foreign Affairs from 2009 to 2010, and as the Minister of Trade and Economic Development in 2012. From 2007 until 2012, Poroshenko headed the Council of Ukraine's National Bank.
Outside government, Poroshenko has been a prominent Ukrainian oligarch with a lucrative career in acquiring and building assets. His most recognized brands are Roshen, the large-scale confectionery company which has earned him the nickname of 'Chocolate King', and the TV channel 5 kanal, an all-news national TV broadcaster. Due to the scale of his business holdings in the manufacturing, agriculture and financial sectors, his political influence that included several stints at government prior to his presidency, and ownership of an influential mass-media outlet, Poroshenko has long been considered one of the prominent Ukrainian oligarchs even though not the most influential among them.
He was elected president on 25 May 2014, capturing more than 54% of the vote in the first round, thereby winning outright and avoiding a run-off.Prime Minister of Ukraine
The Prime Minister of Ukraine (Ukrainian: Прем'єр-міністр України, Prem'ier-ministr Ukrayiny) is Ukraine's head of government, presiding over the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine, which is the highest body of the executive branch of the Ukrainian government. The position replaced the Soviet post of the Chairman of Council of Ministers of the Ukrainian SSR, which was established on March 25, 1946.
Since Ukrainian independence from the Soviet Union in 1991, there have been sixteen prime ministers, or twenty, counting acting PMs. Arseniy Yatsenyuk was the first Prime Minister who came from Western Ukraine. Two prime ministers were born in the Russian SFSR.
The current prime minister is Volodymyr Groysman since he was sworn on 14 April 2016.Second Yatsenyuk government
The second Yatsenyuk government was created in Ukraine after the 2014 Ukrainian parliamentary election. On 2 December 2014, 288 members (of the 423) of the Ukrainian parliament approved the composition of the cabinet. The Government was backed by (the political parties) Petro Poroshenko Bloc, People's Front, Self Reliance, Fatherland and Radical Party.Radical Party left the coalition on 1 September 2015.After Fatherland and Self Reliance left the coalition on 17 and 18 February 2016 the coalition became 5 deputies short of the 226 needed. It was then disputed that Radical Party had left the coalition until on 29 March 2016 it was officially announced in parliament that on September 1, 2015, Radical Party had left the coalition.On 10 April 2016 Prime Minister Yatsenyuk announced he resigned. On 14 April 2016 Yatsenyuk was replaced by new Prime Minister Volodymyr Groysman and thus the Groysman Government became the next cabinet of Ukraine.Timeline of the Euromaidan
The Euromaidan (Ukrainian: Євромайдан, Yevromaidan, literally "Eurosquare") was a wave of demonstrations and civil unrest in Ukraine, which began on the night of 21 November 2013 with very large public protests demanding closer European integration. The scope of the protests evolved over subsequent months, culminating in resignation of Azarov's government and ousting of President Yanukovych. Protesters also have stated they joined because of the dispersal of protesters on 30 November and "a will to change life in Ukraine". By 25 January 2014 the protests had been fueled by the perception of widespread government corruption, abuse of power, and violation of human rights in Ukraine.Ukrainian Democratic Alliance for Reform
The Ukrainian Democratic Alliance for Reform (Ukrainian: Український демократичний альянс за реформи Віталія Кличка; the acronym UDAR/УДАР translates to "strike" or "punch", English: Ukrainian Democratic Alliance for Reform of Vitali Klitschko) was a political party in Ukraine headed by retired Ukrainian professional heavyweight boxer and the WBC world heavyweight champion emeritus Vitali Klitschko. It merged into the Petro Poroshenko Bloc on 28 August 2015. However, in 2017 UDAR was still registered as a political party and it employed two persons. The party is an observer member of the European People's Party (EPP) since 2013.
The party had an anti-corruption and pro-European platform.
Legally it is the successor of Political Party "European Capital" (Ukrainian: Політична партія "Європейська столиця") which was registered in March 2005. In its last outing the party was founded on April 24, 2010, on the basis of the Vitali Klitschko Bloc (Ukrainian: Блок Віталія Кличка), a local political alliance in Kiev (the capital of Ukraine).UDAR had "observer status" in the European People's Party.The party won 40 seats in the Ukrainian parliament in the 2012 Ukrainian parliamentary election. In the 2014 parliamentary election, 30% of the Petro Poroshenko Bloc election list was filled by members of UDAR (as non-partisan) and UDAR leader Klitschko topped that list. The Petro Poroshenko Bloc won the election with 132 seats.Vitali Klitschko
Vitali Volodymyrovych Klitschko (; Ukrainian: Віта́лій Володи́мирович Кличко́, [ʋiˈtɑlʲij klɪtʃˈkɔ]; born 19 July 1971) is a Ukrainian politician and former professional boxer. He currently serves as Mayor of Kiev and head of the Kiev City State Administration, having held both offices since June 2014. Klitschko is a former leader of the Petro Poroshenko Bloc and a former Member of the Ukrainian Parliament. He became actively involved in Ukrainian politics in 2005 and combined this with his professional boxing career until his retirement from the sport in 2013.As a boxer, Klitschko is a three-time world heavyweight champion, the second-longest-reigning WBC heavyweight champion of all time, has the fifth-longest combined world championship reign in history at 2,735 days, the third-longest individual WBC heavyweight title streak of all time at 9 consecutive defenses, and the fourth-longest combined title streak in the modern heavyweight history at 15 title bouts. He held the WBO title from 1999 to 2000; the Ring magazine title from 2004 to 2005; and the WBC title twice between 2008 and 2013.
Standing at 2.01 metres (6 feet 7 inches), Klitschko was renowned for having exceptional ring dominance. With an 87% knockout percentage, he holds one of the highest knockout-to-fight ratios of any world champion in heavyweight boxing history, while also possessing a highly durable chin. His two losses came via a shoulder injury and a deep cut above his eye, both of which were recorded as stoppages rather than outright knockouts; in both fights he was leading on the judges' scorecards.
Klitschko is the only heavyweight boxer to have reigned as world champion in three different decades. Along with Oliver McCall, he is also the only world heavyweight champion to have never been knocked down in any fight. Klitschko and George Foreman are the only heavyweight boxers in history to defend a world title after turning 40. Being the first professional boxing world champion to hold a PhD degree, and in reference to his punching power, Klitschko's nickname was "Dr. Ironfist". His younger brother, Wladimir, is a former unified world heavyweight champion. From 2006 until 2015, Vitali and Wladimir dominated heavyweight boxing, a period typically known as the "Klitschko Era" of the division.Klitschko formally began his political career in 2006 when he placed second in the Kiev mayoral race. In 2010, he founded the party Ukrainian Democratic Alliance for Reform (UDAR) and was elected into parliament for this party in 2012. He was a leading figure in the 2013–2014 Euromaidan protests, and he announced his possible candidacy for the Ukrainian presidency but later withdrew and endorsed Petro Poroshenko. He was elected Mayor of Kiev on 25 May 2014. Klitschko headed the election list of the winner of the 2014 Ukrainian parliamentary election, the Petro Poroshenko Bloc, but he gave up his parliamentary seat to stay on as Mayor of Kiev. On 28 August 2015 the UDAR party merged into Petro Poroshenko Bloc. Klitschko thus became the new party leader. Klitschko was reelected as mayor on 15 November 2015.Volodymyr Groysman
Volodymyr Borysovych Groysman, sometimes transliterated as Volodymyr Borysovych Hroisman (Ukrainian: Володи́мир Бори́сович Гро́йсман (born 20 January 1978), is a Ukrainian politician of Jewish descent who has been the Prime Minister of Ukraine since 14 April 2016.From March 2006 until February 2014 Groysman was the Mayor of Vinnytsia. From then to November 2014, he held two concurrent positions as the Vice Prime Minister of Ukraine for Regional Policy and the Minister of Regional Development, Construction and Housing and Communal Services of Ukraine. He was elected into parliament on the party lists of the pro-presidential Petro Poroshenko Bloc. Groysman's next post was the Chairman of the Verkhovna Rada (Ukraine's national parliament), starting late November 2014 until being appointed Prime Minister.
He is the first ethnically Jewish Prime Minister of Ukraine.Women in Ukraine
Women in Ukraine have equal constitutional rights as men in the economic, political, cultural and social fields, as well as in the family. Women receive lower salaries and have limited opportunity for career advancement.
Most of the around 45 percent of Ukraine’s population (45 million) who suffer violence – physical, sexual or mental – are women.Yuriy Lutsenko
Yuriy Vitaliyovych Lutsenko (Ukrainian: Юрій Віталійович Луценко; born 14 December 1964) is a Ukrainian politician and the current Prosecutor General of Ukraine (since 12 May 2016).Lutsenko is a former Minister of Internal Affairs. He occupied this post in the two cabinets of Yulia Tymoshenko and in cabinets of Yuriy Yekhanurov, and Viktor Yanukovych. The Ministry of Internal Affairs is the Ukrainian police authority, and Lutsenko became the first civilian minister in February 2005. Lutsenko is also a former leader of the Bloc of Petro Poroshenko party and a former leader of its faction in parliament.On 13 December 2010 Lutsenko was charged with abuse of office and forgery by Prosecutor General of Ukraine Viktor Pshonka. On 27 February 2012 Lutsenko was sentenced to four years in jail for embezzlement and abuse of office. Lutsenko was held at the Lukyanivska Prison from 26 December 2010 until 7 April 2013 when he was released from prison because Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych pardoned him (among others) for health reasons. Both Lutsenko and his political allies regard his trial as an act of political persecution by the regime of Viktor Yanukovych. The European Union, the United States Department of State, Canada, human rights organizations, and other international organizations protested against the sentence and questioned whether it was a "fair, transparent and independent legal process".Lutsenko's wife Iryna Lutsenko is a current member of the Ukrainian parliament.