EBA Meeting with Vitaliy Klitschko, Mayor of Kyiv
Yesterday, on May 20, the European Business Association held an online meeting with Vitaliy Klitschko, Mayor of Kyiv, to discuss the stages of quarantine weakening in the capital and important business issues within the competence of the Kyiv City State Administration.
Vitaliy Klitschko announced that the second stage of quarantine weakening in Kyiv would start on May 22 with the resumption of public transport, while the work of the Kyiv metro would be resumed from May 25. He also stressed that due to the closure of public transport, the city suffers from traffic jams, so on May 18, it was decided to restrict the movement of large trucks in the morning and evening hours. However, these restrictions will be gradually lifted to relieve pressure on businesses for which regular freight traffic is important.
Also, there was a discussion of the state of the public transport fleet in Kyiv, which needs to be modernized to create a comfortable and up-to-date passenger infrastructure for the citizens. Mr. Klitschko announced that a large consignment of buses would be purchased soon. Besides, it was reported that the city authorities plan to develop a non-cash payment system in public transport. Thus, the Kyiv Metro refuses to use tokens. Instead, a single electronic ticket is being introduced in both the metro and other modes of transport.
The Mayor also informed on the reopening of various facilities and institutions in Kyiv. Thus, kindergarten and sports sections can start working from the end of May, approximately on May 25. The decision on the children’s summer camps will be made separately after the launch of educational institutions. The malls will resume their work only after the full launch of public transport, approximately also from the next week. On the initial stage, the restaurant business can be reopened only as summer terraces. In general, a full-scale relaunch of food establishments is expected to be no earlier than June 10. From the same day, hotels can resume operation. Nevertheless, this is preliminary plan that can be implemented only if the coronavirus situation in the city keeps a positive trend.
In case of a favorable epidemiological situation, the next significant stage of lifting the restrictions in Kyiv is scheduled for June 10. Mass events can be carried out not earlier than this date. Companies, various institutions, and offices will have to meet the following work requirements – keeping the distance of 1.5 meters between people, ensuring the wearing of masks, proper ventilation, temperature screening, enhanced disinfection. Mr. Klitschko stressed that the lifting of restrictive measures will depend on each of us, namely, on our ability to be responsible and conscious in this situation.
Regarding the support for the most affected industries and businesses, Mr. Klitschko said that the city authorities will work out solutions to support the tourism business and informed about the existing support programs that can benefit small businesses. These include a rent reduction for the use of communal property, discounts on loan agreements, financial support from the Fund for Entrepreneurship Development. Together with the city authorities, the European Business Association will also develop an anti-crisis plan for the hotel business to minimize the negative impact of quarantine on the operation of hotels in Ukraine.
We are grateful to receive the information on the Kyiv Urban Master Plan for the next 20 years. Mr. Klitschko said that the city cooperates with German specialists and borrows the experience of the city of Leipzig. The work on the Plan continues, although the current crisis has slightly slowed down its development.
At the end of the meeting, the European Business Association agreed to establish operational communication with Mr. Klitschko and the city authorities for more efficient and faster cooperation. In addition, it was agreed to hold a separate meeting to discuss in detail the situation in the hotel industry, as well as possible steps, and incentives to support the business.