Czech companies are not blocking business in Ukraine

Andriy Dubchak

According to the state agency CzechTrade, Czech companies have not yet slowed down their business in Ukraine because of the crisis there. The agency has no information that deliveries to the country have been canceled or delayed. However, increased caution is in order.

Companies should deliver orders only after payment has been received and discuss in detail the points relating to exceptional circumstances with their lawyers when entering into new contracts. Oksana Antonenko, director of the CzechTrade foreign office in Ukraine, said. Otto Danek, the vice-chairman of the Association of Exporters, said that any political threat always negatively affects trade.

Russia has deployed tens of thousands of troops along its border with Ukraine and Belarus. Kyiv and some Western countries claim that Moscow is preparing for a possible invasion of Ukraine and that it is planning provocations to justify such an operation. But Russia, which annexed Ukraine’s Crimea peninsula in 2014, denies it plans an attack against its neighbor. Moscow is demanding that NATO commit to not accepting Ukraine as a member of the alliance. On the other hand, the West insists on NATO’s open-door policy.

Antonenko said the situation in Ukraine is currently calm, but it is impossible to predict further developments. “The mood in society is normal, and there is no indication that the population is preparing for an emergency. There are no queues in supermarkets. The shelves are filled with the same assortment. Petrol prices have not risen, the number of passengers at airports has not increased,” she said.

According to CzechTrade, about 250 Czech companies regularly trade in the Ukrainian market, most through a local agent or importer. In comparison, about 30 companies have established a branch or company with a Ukrainian partner.