Business news from Ukraine

From April 24 to May 7, Sweden will host second edition of European Festival: Ukrainian Spring”

From April 24 to May 7, 2024, Sweden will host the European Festival: Ukrainian Spring, which this year will bring together 12 cultural events. Stockholm will host a variety of events that reflect Ukraine’s interaction with the European cultural context in different ways.

The concept of the festival is to present Ukraine as an integral part of the common European cultural heritage. This connection is emphasized by the festival’s slogan: “Reflections in each other’s eyes – Ukraine in Europe and Europe in Ukraine.”

The organizers are convinced that today the ultimate goal of all cultural events dedicated to Ukraine abroad should be to focus public attention on Ukraine’s struggle and victory in the war unleashed by Russia. And the primary task is to once again remind people of the need for increased assistance to protect us from the aggressor.

Therefore, this year, each of the 12 days of the festival will be dedicated to one of the Ukrainian artists who went to defend their country and died at the front.

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Sweden has contributed more than EUR 25 mln to Energy Support Fund of Ukraine and will continue to help

Sweden has contributed EUR25.27 million to the Energy Support Fund of Ukraine, the Ministry of Energy has announced.

“Part of the Swedish contribution has already been paid to provide the necessary assistance to the distribution system operators of the frontline regions of Zaporizhzhia and Mykolaiv, as well as for the needs of the transmission system operator,” the Energy Ministry said in a release following a meeting between its head Herman Halushchenko and Swedish Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Energy, Business and Industry Abba Bush.

In addition, about EUR 8 million of the Swedish grant is intended to finance the implementation of decentralized renewable energy solutions, including solar panels, batteries, microgrids, and energy efficiency measures for social services and households.

Since March 2022, Ukraine has also received 97 shipments of power equipment from Sweden with a total weight of over 1126 tons, including 222 generators, current and voltage transformers, and other electricity and gas equipment for renewable energy.

“We will continue to help Ukraine in these difficult times of trial by providing assistance to help them recover from the latest hostile attacks. These days, we see Russia using energy as a weapon once again,” Bush said during the meeting, the key topic of which was the continuation of Swedish support for Ukraine in the war against the Russian aggressor, assistance to the Ukrainian energy sector, and strengthening cooperation in nuclear energy and renewable energy.

According to her, the Ukrainian experience in strengthening the resilience and support of the energy system is extremely important and useful for Europe.

According to the Ministry of Energy, the Vice Prime Minister emphasized the minister’s special efforts to maintain contacts with her colleagues, the energy ministers of the EU member states, in developing a policy to strengthen the continent’s energy security.

“The recent attacks on Ukraine’s energy system are a very good indication for us in Europe of how important the stability of the energy system is for the vital activity of our countries. And we are pleased that we are learning from the leadership of Ukraine’s energy sector how to maintain energy system resilience,” Bush emphasized.

“We thank our international partners and Sweden itself for supporting Ukraine’s energy sector with equipment and contributions to the Energy Support Fund. We are assessing the consequences of the recent attacks and will soon compile a list of urgent needs for equipment to carry out restoration work,” Galushchenko said.

As reported by the Ministry of Energy of Ukraine in mid-December 2023, the total amount of sponsors’ commitments to the Energy Support Fund of Ukraine increased to EUR 390 million, with EUR 229 million actually transferred to the Fund’s grid from 18 public and private sector sponsors from different countries.

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Ukrainian Institute in Sweden announces first winners of new award for young Ukrainian pianists

The Ukrainian Institute in Sweden has selected two promising young pianists to receive scholarships from the foundation of Swedish philanthropist Anders Wall.

“We are extremely grateful to Anders Wall for introducing the award for Ukrainian young musicians. As a pianist, I have always understood how important it is to lend a helping hand to young pianists at the beginning of their careers, especially Ukrainian pianists who have always “stuck” to Russian pianists, even repertoire-wise, because there were more opportunities there. Since 2017, when I began to be involved in the Horowitz Young Pianists Competition, I have given two Ukrainian pianists the opportunity to present themselves at various venues in Scandinavia. But this new prize certainly attracts much more attention and offers many more opportunities. Being noticed in the international environment, especially at the beginning of your career, is extremely important,” said Natalia Pasichnyk, director of the Ukrainian Institute in Sweden and concert pianist.

As part of its support for Ukraine, the Anders Wall’s Västerlöfsta Foundation has established an annual award of SEK 100,000 (approximately EUR 10,000) to support young Ukrainian pianists.

The first recipients of the Anders Wall’s Västerlöfsta Scholarship for Young Ukrainian Pianists are 19-year-old Roman Fedyurko from Kyiv and 21-year-old Anton Bondarenko from Zaporizhzhia.

“The purpose of the scholarships is to give promising Ukrainian talents more opportunities for further development in a very difficult time for Ukraine, but it is also a way to draw attention to and support Ukrainian culture. The war is largely about the Russian leadership denying the existence of a Ukrainian nation with its own culture,” said Charlotte Wall, chairman of the Westerlefst Church Music Foundation.

The scholarships will be awarded during a concert at Westerlevsta Church in Hebø on May 4. The concert will be a part of the program of the festival of Ukrainian culture “European Festival: Ukrainian Spring”, which will start in Sweden on April 24 and last for two weeks.


Roman Fedyurko started studying piano at a music school in Kyiv at the age of five. In 2021, Roman won first prize at the Liszt Center’s online piano competition, the Wiener Klassiker online competition, and the Isidor Badji Piano Competition in Novi Sad, and received a scholarship for young artists from the President of Ukraine. In 2022, Roman won first prize at the Volodymyr Horowitz International Piano Competition.

Anton Bondarenko started studying music at the age of five in the Zaporizhzhia Music School. He became a laureate of several national and international piano competitions among young people, performed with the Zaporizhzhia Symphony Orchestra and the Kyiv State Symphony Orchestra. In 2017, he was awarded the title of “Artist of the Zaporizhzhia Philharmonic”. Anton is currently studying at the Academy of Music in the frontline city of Dnipro.

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Sweden to open trade office in Kiev

The Swedish Export Credit Agency (EKN) has started accepting applications for special credit guarantees for exports to Ukraine since March 1. The total limit of guarantees according to the country’s budget for 2024 is SEK333m ($32.1m at the current exchange rate).
According to EKN, this became possible after the Swedish government adopted a relevant decree on February 29.
In addition to the new export credit guarantees, the government also decided to open a trade secretary’s office in Kiev and appoint a new trade secretary, the press release said.
“The export credit guarantees and the opening of a new trade office in Kiev will make it easier for Swedish companies to invest in Ukraine. It is also a concrete example of how the government is working to increase synergies between aid, trade and business promotion,” the statement quotes the Minister for Development Cooperation and Foreign Trade Johan Forssell as saying.
It is indicated that guarantees will be provided for exports that can contribute to the development and welfare of Ukraine.

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Sweden allocates $133 mln to Ukraine to support the population in winter

Sweden is donating 1.4 billion kronor ($133 million) to Ukraine, which will be used, among other things, to support the population in the winter.

According to the website of the Swedish public broadcaster SVG, the new support package was presented by Prime Minister Ulf Kristersson and Aid Minister Johan Forsell on Monday.

“This is the largest support so far in Sweden’s bilateral assistance to Ukraine,” Kristersson said at a press conference.

Of this package, 900 million kronor will go to the World Bank’s Ukraine Recovery Fund, which supports Ukraine’s energy, housing, healthcare and transportation infrastructure. In addition, money taken from Sweden’s aid budget will be used to purchase heaters and energy equipment. According to Forsell, this was the request made by the Ukrainian side to Sweden.

He also accused Russia of conducting “energy terrorism” against Ukraine. “Russia is deliberately targeting civilian infrastructure to ensure that civilians, who are already under severe pressure, will have an even harder time. With this package, we want to help Ukraine both build new and rebuild what has been destroyed,” Forssell said.

At the same time, Kristersson warned of the consequences if the EU countries fail to agree on an expanded long-term budget at this week’s summit in Brussels. “I still hope that everything will work out. But I want to emphasize that we are not talking about the usual European disagreements that we sometimes have, because then you just have another meeting later, and that would have huge consequences if we don’t agree,” he said.

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Sweden and Switzerland to provide $13 mln for Grain from Ukraine program

Sweden will support the Grain from Ukraine initiative to ensure food security by providing an additional SEK 100 million (approximately $9.6 million) through the UN World Food Program (WFP), Swedish Prime Minister Ulf Kristersson said in a live webcast of the initiative’s summit in Kyiv on November 25.

For his part, Swiss President Alain Berset, who attended the summit, announced that Switzerland would contribute to the relief effort by providing CHF 3 million (about $3.4 million) to the World Food Program.

“As a result of Russia’s military aggression, agricultural production in Ukraine has fallen by 45%; about 11 million people in the country are dependent on food aid,” the Swiss Embassy in Ukraine said in a Facebook post.

“It is admirable how Ukraine is defending its country against Russia’s ongoing aggression and at the same time contributing to the global food supply. We support Ukraine’s efforts to export grain and other agricultural products to world markets and to the most vulnerable countries,” the Swedish government’s website quoted the Prime Minister as saying.

It is specified that since Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine in February 2022, Sweden has allocated more than SEK 28 billion for various efforts to support Ukraine.

Lithuanian Prime Minister Ingrida Šimonite announced an additional EUR 2 million at the summit. Another EUR 3 million was provided by Finland.

Following the summit, President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelenskyy said that last year, the Grain from Ukraine program managed to attract about $180 million, while this year it has raised more than $100 million.

“This is support for other countries and support for Ukrainian exports and farmers. This is very important. I think we will be able to double this figure,” the President of Ukraine said.

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