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Ukraine’s largest business community gathered for the 22nd celebration

19/ 11/ 2021
  Yesterday, November 18, there was the Annual General Membership Meeting of the European Business Association. For the 22nd year in a row, this landmark event brings together company executives, investors, and business leaders to discuss the results, plans, and goals of the EBA community. The event was opened by Anna Derevyanko, EBA Executive Director, who thanked each EBA member for their expertise and invaluable contribution to the development of our community. She focused her speech on trends that are currently prevailing in the business environment in Ukraine. They were divided into 3 categories: the impressive ones, the disappointing ones and the ones that need to be improved. Thus, a new global trend for sustainable development is emerging in Ukraine. According to our survey, 83% of EBA member companies have adapted this year and found their sustainable niches that will be further developed. And this year EBA also launched 2 projects fueled by sustainability. These are Agro Varta, which has already enabled the recycling of hundreds of tons of the used CPP containers, and Second Chance Bank, which is the first online platform for upcycling in Ukraine. Also, Anna emphasized that the business has become more active this year. Thus, the number of collective advocacy initiatives has grown to 388. Although, this also means that the business has to face problems more frequently, and Ukraine has not fully used the opportunities arising in the crisis period. Moreover, the government listens to business representatives but it implements proposals selectively, as reported by 80% of surveyed companies. As the result, we have a lack of progress in reforming the country. In contrast to big business, SMEs have to endure even greater challenges and, therefore, they need more support from the state. However, in general, the problems of both large and small businesses are quite similar. And it is very important to foster cooperation between the business and the government, especially in times of crisis. Unfortunately, for the first time in many years, neither the President nor the Prime Minister of Ukraine was able to join the meeting with the business this year. Although, surely, the business looks forward to getting the attention of the state leaders. Therefore, the community, that unites Ukraines largest corporate taxpayers who create millions of jobs, does not understand why business was ignored by the heads of the state. We do hope that the situation will be different next year. Afterward, Serhii Marchenko, Minister of Finance of Ukraine, the only representative of the Government who joined the meeting, made a welcoming speech. He noted the importance of the event which brought together transparent businesses that pay taxes and thus provide the financing of the wide range of social initiatives. According to the Ministry of Finance, this year Ukraine’s TOP-20 largest corporate taxpayers contributed 32 ​​billion UAH more than last year to the state budget. So, the Minister of Finance set the task for itself – to maintain this trend and do everything possible so that companies can pay taxes legally in Ukraine. For this cause, the Ministry ensures that a realistic state budget is formed and that it can be executed without additional pressure on the business. The Annual General Membership Meeting has always been an opportunity for the EBA members to keep abreast of issues that currently concern the business community. Thus, recently the largest investors and international companies within the EBA have expressed their disturbance about the geopolitical situation (with Russia, the occupied territories, etc.). Therefore, we devoted a separate panel to discuss the latest state of affairs on the Ukraine-Russia border with the participation of Pavlo Klimkin, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine (2014-2019), and Andrii Zagorodnyuk, Minister of Defense of Ukraine (2019-2020).  It is early to talk about the threat of escalation and its consequences for the business. But we need to stay alert, - said Mr. Klimkin. - The nature of movements of Russian forces near the border of Ukraine is different from what happened in April this year. Other destabilizing factors include the migrant crisis in Belarus and the artificial gas shortage. Should we fear anything? In my opinion, after all these years - no. Moreover, we have the US and European allies on our side who help us to implement deterrence measures. I understand the business in this situation as nothing can be worse than having news of this type. But still, it should be reminded that the aggression against Ukraine has been going on for years, - commented Mr. Zagorodnyuk. - We should not forget that Russias strategic goal is to undermine Ukraines sovereignty in all senses, including the economic one. Rationally speaking, before starting a full-scale war, Russia will seek other ways to destabilize Ukraine. Thats why business, government, and the international community need to stick together to show our strength and trust in Ukraine’s capabilities. And at the final panel, we could learn more about the personality of the EBA leaders who told us about their passions and struggles during 2021. We truly thank all the speakers, guests, and partners for being a part of our most prominent event of the year and making the celebration of our common achievements unforgettable! It did not go unnoticed that everyone was missing the live communication, and thus we had more than 600 participants joining us yesterday. We were extremely happy to see old and new faces and share with you our ideas, dreams and plans for the future.     Main Partner                             Senior Partners                  Partners       

Yesterday, November 18, there was the Annual General Membership Meeting of the European Business Association. For the 22nd year in a row, this landmark event brings together company executives, investors, and business leaders to discuss the results, plans, and goals of the EBA community.

The event was opened by Anna Derevyanko, EBA Executive Director, who thanked each EBA member for their expertise and invaluable contribution to the development of our community. She focused her speech on trends that are currently prevailing in the business environment in Ukraine. They were divided into 3 categories: the impressive ones, the disappointing ones and the ones that need to be improved. Thus, a new global trend for sustainable development is emerging in Ukraine. According to our survey, 83% of EBA member companies have adapted this year and found their sustainable niches that will be further developed. And this year EBA also launched 2 projects fueled by sustainability. These are Agro Varta, which has already enabled the recycling of hundreds of tons of the used CPP containers, and Second Chance Bank, which is the first online platform for upcycling in Ukraine. Also, Anna emphasized that the business has become more active this year. Thus, the number of collective advocacy initiatives has grown to 388. Although, this also means that the business has to face problems more frequently, and Ukraine has not fully used the opportunities arising in the crisis period. Moreover, the government listens to business representatives but it implements proposals selectively, as reported by 80% of surveyed companies. As the result, we have a lack of progress in reforming the country. In contrast to big business, SMEs have to endure even greater challenges and, therefore, they need more support from the state. However, in general, the problems of both large and small businesses are quite similar. And it is very important to foster cooperation between the business and the government, especially in times of crisis.

Unfortunately, for the first time in many years, neither the President nor the Prime Minister of Ukraine was able to join the meeting with the business this year. Although, surely, the business looks forward to getting the attention of the state leaders. Therefore, the community, that unites Ukraine’s largest corporate taxpayers who create millions of jobs, does not understand why business was ignored by the heads of the state. We do hope that the situation will be different next year.

Afterward, Serhii Marchenko, Minister of Finance of Ukraine, the only representative of the Government who joined the meeting, made a welcoming speech. He noted the importance of the event which brought together transparent businesses that pay taxes and thus provide the financing of the wide range of social initiatives. According to the Ministry of Finance, this year Ukraine’s TOP-20 largest corporate taxpayers contributed 32 ​​billion UAH more than last year to the state budget. So, the Minister of Finance set the task for itself – to maintain this trend and do everything possible so that companies can pay taxes legally in Ukraine. For this cause, the Ministry ensures that a realistic state budget is formed and that it can be executed without additional pressure on the business.

The Annual General Membership Meeting has always been an opportunity for the EBA members to keep abreast of issues that currently concern the business community. Thus, recently the largest investors and international companies within the EBA have expressed their disturbance about the geopolitical situation (with Russia, the occupied territories, etc.). Therefore, we devoted a separate panel to discuss the latest state of affairs on the Ukraine-Russia border with the participation of Pavlo Klimkin, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine (2014-2019), and Andrii Zagorodnyuk, Minister of Defense of Ukraine (2019-2020). 

“It is early to talk about the threat of escalation and its consequences for the business. But we need to stay alert, – said Mr. Klimkin. – The nature of movements of Russian forces near the border of Ukraine is different from what happened in April this year. Other destabilizing factors include the migrant crisis in Belarus and the artificial gas shortage. Should we fear anything? In my opinion, after all these years – no. Moreover, we have the US and European allies on our side who help us to implement deterrence measures.”

“I understand the business in this situation as nothing can be worse than having news of this type. But still, it should be reminded that the aggression against Ukraine has been going on for years, – commented Mr. Zagorodnyuk. – We should not forget that Russia’s strategic goal is to undermine Ukraine’s sovereignty in all senses, including the economic one. Rationally speaking, before starting a full-scale war, Russia will seek other ways to destabilize Ukraine. That’s why business, government, and the international community need to stick together to show our strength and trust in Ukraine’s capabilities. “

And at the final panel, we could learn more about the personality of the EBA leaders who told us about their passions and struggles during 2021.

We truly thank all the speakers, guests, and partners for being a part of our most prominent event of the year and making the celebration of our common achievements unforgettable!

It did not go unnoticed that everyone was missing the live communication, and thus we had more than 600 participants joining us yesterday. We were extremely happy to see old and new faces and share with you our ideas, dreams and plans for the future.

 

  Main Partner                             Senior Partners

                

Partners

    

 

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