25 October 2010

Doing Business in Ukraine vs United Kingdom

Many people ask me the question “What’s it like doing business in Ukraine compared to the UK?”
My light hearted reply is sometimes too quick, like “For whom?”…”Me or Ukrainians?”

But seriously I like to look at the question from all sides. i.e. a British person/company doing business in Ukraine and secondly Ukrainians doing business in Ukraine and comparing it to the UK. Let’s look at each one.

British person/company doing business in Ukraine:
1. Payment systems – Just about all business is conducted on up front or advance payments, none of the 30 day plus credit nonsense. A big plus for cash flow.
2. Customers/Clients don’t really expect too much from you as they have little experience of ‘customer service’.

1. Setting up a business in Ukraine is NOT easy
2. Banking system in Ukraine. The banks are still unpaid agents for the government/tax authority. Banks are too afraid to do anything unless it meets with the demands from the Government/Central Bank of Ukraine et al.
3. The Ukraine Government assumes that it owns all the money circulating in the economy.
4. Accountants in Ukraine. They’re also secret agents for the Tax Authority. But they do not know they are performing this free service.
5. Significant Changes in the Legal System are frequent (maybe monthly)
6. Corruption. Most people in both public and private sectors expect to be “Paid Something’ for their troubles in addition to their salary.
7. Black Economy. – Maybe as much as 50 percent of all business is conducted in the ‘black economy’.
8. Rule of Law and the Legal System. It’s a big joke.
9. Service. Most people/businesses provide Bad Customer Service

Ukrainians doing business in Ukraine:
1. Payments system…..same as above.
2. Most people/businesses like to be paid in CASH
3. Customers/Clients…same as above

1. Tax avoidance and even tax evasion are a part of daily life.
2. Banking system in Ukraine….same as above
3. The Ukraine Government…same as above.
4. Accountants in Ukraine…same as above.
5. Significant Changes in the Legal System……same as above.
6. Corruption…….same as above
7. Black Economy. …..same as above
8. Rule of Law….same as above
9. Service…..same as above

Comparing it to the UK- (In the UK its like this..)
1. Customers/Clients DEMAND too much
2. They want 30 days plus free credit on all goods and services supplied
3. Cash Flow is a big problem for most businesses in the UK
4. Businesses are afraid to do anything due to fear of Health & Safety Legislation
5. Employees get paid far too much for what they do

1. Its easy to set up a business in the UK
2. As a business you control all the money in your accounts (If you have any).
3. The Rule of Law in the UK is one of the best examples to the rest of the world.

Well there you go…
One day we can look at this in a more serious way. LOL

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