Kyiv looks for business boom as Crimea conflict takes toll

euronews (in English)

by euronews (in English)

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In the midst of a political crisis, this is not business as usual for Ukraine’s interim government

But nonetheless it must try to right drum more business up as it attempts to right the wrongs of the country’s stricken economy.

Prime Minister Yatsenyuk tried to reassure investors on Monday that changes are being made,promising further transparency for Ukraine’s business climate.

euronews spoke to the CEO of a major investment firm operating in the country, who said the current dispute with Russia is driving away business.

Tomas Fiala, Dragon Capital CEO: “The main problem currently is the intervention of Russia in Crimea, that has unfortunately overshadowed the good intentions and the positive reaction of investors to the political change in the country”.

Adding to woes, a weak currency is having a negative impact on some small, import based companies. euronews caught up with Anna Kovalenko, who owns a clothes shop just outside Kyiv:

“the average price of one of our dresses is 60 Euros. But in March we’re getting in more stock, i’m afraid to think how much will it cost. We’ll probably have to raise prices 10, 15 or even 20% because the fabrics were bought abroad during the week when the dollar went rapidly up.*

Ukraine’s overall economic outlook is fairly grim at present. Inheriting empty state coffers, Kyiv has already had to ask the IMF for a loan of more than 10 billion euros.

The privatisation of state energy giant Naftogaz is also in the pipeline. But for now the spectre of conflict looms over any financial recover.