Cooperation with Ukraine Essential

Hope for the Future?

Hope for the Future?

The situation that is taking place east of Poland, in Ukraine, has left Polish businesses and entrepreneurs who cooperate with Ukraine in much distress. The recent political compromise and power shift has muted these worries but businesses are still concerned. As Marek Kłoczko, from the Polish Chamber of Commerce, reported to the Polish press agency IAR, “Polish companies are very active in many economic sectors in Ukraine and therefore anxiety felt by these entrepreneurs is quite understandable.” Andrzej Sadowski, from the Adam Smith Center, notes that Polish companies cooperate with nearly all possible Ukrainian economic sectors. “Since Poland’s chief problem is high unemployment, we need to do everything to keep our economic cooperation with Ukraine going as long and as efficiently as possible.” He notes that Poland already experienced economic limitations in the East and this had an extremely negative impact on the Polish labour market. He mentioned that at the end of the twentieth century the Polish government decided to reduce exports to the East. As a result many Polish businesses, such as furniture industries that aimed at providing cheap and simple manufacturing for the Eastern market, had to close down and many people lost their jobs. Another expert, Marcin Nowacki from the Association of Entrepreneurs and Employers, believes that limiting cooperation with Ukraine could harm people who have jobs thanks to mutual contacts between the two countries, which is quite significant considering the high level of unemployment. He also adds that many Poles have banks in Ukraine and many companies export products there. Poland is Ukraine’s fifth largest supplier of goods; nearly 4,000 Polish companies sell their products and services there. Estimates from the Central Statistical Office (GUS) show that last year Polish exports to Ukraine were worth more than $18bn.

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