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Viktor Pinchuk, the Ukrainian metals and media tycoon who is the country's second-richest man, said on Tuesday that he would give at least half of his estimated $3.7 billion (2.7-billion-euro) fortune to charity.
Pinchuk, 52, becomes the first national from ex-Soviet Ukraine to join the effort by Bill Gates and Warren Buffett to encourage the world's richest people to share their wealth.
Pinchuk said he felt it was his duty to invest at least half of his fortune in education, healthcare and the arts.
"The post-Soviet transformation process was very painful for Ukaine and other countries in the region," Pinchuk was quoted as saying in a statement by his charitable foundation.
"Some of us had the chance to use the opportunities that arose to make our fortunes," Pinchuk said. "It is time to give back, so that as many citizens as possible can benefit."
The initiative dubbed the Giving Pledge, announced in 2010, was launched by Microsoft founder Gates and investment guru Buffett who want to convince the richest people to give 50 percent or more of their fortunes to charity.
Pinchuk did not say how much he would be committing to charity but the Ukraininan edition of Forbes magazine estimates his fortune at $3.7 billion.
Pinchuk, a former Soviet engineer who built his fortune after the collapse of the USSR, is the former Soviet nation's second-richest man, according to the magazine.
A prominent patron of the arts, Pinchuk is married to the daughter of Leonid Kuchma, Ukraine's president between 1994 and 2005, and is a proponent of Ukraine joining the European Union.
In 2010, he became the first Ukrainian to join the list of 100 most influential people in the world put together by Time magazine.
A total of 105 people from nine countries have so far joined the Giving Pledge initiative including Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg, "Star Wars" director George Lucas and Ted Turner, the founder of the CNN news channel.