Business news from Ukraine

59% of new fops in Ukraine were opened by women in 2024

This is the highest figure in recent years

More than 43 thousand fops in Ukraine in 2024 were created by women, according to the Unified State Register. This is more than half of the total number of newly created sole proprietorships in the first quarter of this year. Women most often open businesses in retail, personal and information services. Men are more likely to choose computer programming and wholesale trade.

43,554 new sole proprietorships were created by women in the first quarter of 2024. This is more than half – 59% – of the total number of new businesses and a record high in recent years. Men opened 30,496 new businesses in the same period. For comparison, in 2021, the share of women was 51% of the total number of newly created fops.

Most often, women entrepreneurs choose retail trade (68% of women and 32% of men), other personal services (89% of women and 11% of men), and information services (63% of women and 37% of men).

At the same time, men are more likely to choose computer programming (58% of men and 42% of women) and wholesale trade (52% of men and 48% of women).

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Best EU countries for women to work revealed – study

Finland is the best country in the EU for women in the workplace, a new study has revealed. Personal finance experts Finansvalp analysed Eurostat data on seats held by women in national parliaments, women in senior management positions, and the 2022 median net income by gender in the 27 EU member countries. Each country was given a gender-equality score out of 50 and ranked from worst to best.

Finland topped the study as the best country for gender equality in the workplace. The country ranked above every other destination due to a high percentage of women in senior roles nationwide. Women make up 72.4% of seats in the national government, the highest percentage of any country in the EU. Finland also placed second for the share of women in seats at national parliament with 46%. Despite a high volume of women taking on senior positions in the country, the gender pay gap still seems to be an issue in Finland. The median net income for men in 2022 sat at €27,353, while women earned 6.04% less on average with €25,719.

Portugal fell just short of Finland, ranking second for gender equality in the workplace. In 2022, the median net income in Portugal was higher for women than men, positioning the country as the only EU nation where female workers earn more on average. Women took home a median net income of €11,038, 0.53% more than the median wage of €10,979 for men. While annual earnings propelled Portugal near the top of the study, the country had the sixth lowest share of female executives, with women counting for only 16.9% of executives at Portugal’s largest publicly listed companies.

France claimed third spot on the study of the EU countries with the most gender-equal workplaces. The country rated high for gender equality thanks to a large percentage of women in leadership roles in some of its biggest publicly listed companies. Women made up 46.1% of board members at these major corporations, the highest percentage of any EU country. One of every four executives at the same companies are women (29%), second only behind Lithuania.

Sweden placed fourth on the study for gender equality in the workplace. The country is home to the most gender-equal parliament in the EU. Approximately 46.6% of seats in the national parliament are held by females, more than any other nation. Sweden also has the fourth-highest percentage of female executives at the country’s large public organisations, with women representing 28.6% of all executives.

The Netherlands rounded out the top five EU countries for women in employment. The country ranked high for female representation in the national government (53.6%) and national parliament (29%). While women make up a large proportion of seats at government and parliament level, men still tend to earn more on average in the Netherlands. According to the 2022 median net income, men earn 5.28% more than women in the country.

Belgium is home to the sixth most gender-equal workplaces in the EU. More than half (55%) of the seats in Belgium’s national government are held by women, the second-highest percentage of any nation in the study. The country’s female representation also remains high at parliament level as well, with females taking 42.9% of all seats. Belgium also has the 11th lowest gender pay gap in the EU, with the median net income of men 3.37% higher than women.

Denmark secured seventh place on the study of the best EU countries for women to work. The country ranked high due to having the 8th lowest gender pay gap in the EU (3.03%) and large proportion of women in senior roles across the nation. Precisely 44.1% of seats at Denmark’s national parliament are held by females, with only Sweden and Finland having a higher rate in the EU. The country also has the third-highest rate of female board members at its largest publicly listed companies (41.4%), just below France and Italy.

Spain, Germany, and Lithuania filled out the top 10 EU countries with the most gender-equal workplaces. Spain and Germany rated high for female representation at government and parliament level, while Lithuania claimed 10th place on the study thanks to the highest share of female executives of any EU nation.

Table: The EU countries with the most gender-equal workplaces

Olle Pettersson, finance expert and CEO of Finansvalp, commented on the study: “In the last 20 years, the number of women holding seats at national government and national parliament level in the EU has risen by over 50%, while the share of female board members at the largest publicly listed companies has exploded by 312%.

“If the trend of greater female representation continues in senior positions across the EU, we should hopefully see the gender pay gap reduce, making many countries more inclusive places for women to work.”

The full table of results can be accessed here.

Sources: Eurostat

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Women increasingly working in “male” positions due to shortage of workers at enterprises – study

The shortage of men threatens the maintenance of production volumes, so companies have begun to attract women to “male” positions. This is evidenced by the results of a study of labor market trends conducted by the Confederation of Employers of Ukraine.
The Confederation of Employers of Ukraine noted that after the full-scale invasion, the role of women in the economy has been growing rapidly. “After the mobilization of men to the Armed Forces of Ukraine, medium and large enterprises faced a significant shortage of personnel, so women were transferred to fill the vacant positions. This practice exists in the areas of metalworking and agricultural processing in highly automated industries, if retraining can be done quickly. Often, the new position requires women to perform certain physical activities. This practice is spreading, in particular, in the furniture industry,” the study notes.
Among other new trends, the Confederation of Employers of Ukraine noted a threefold higher interest in starting a business among veterans than among ordinary Ukrainians. “Employers fear that when hiring veterans, they will face a difficult psycho-emotional state of such employees (79%), alcohol or drug addiction (25%), and conflict (24%). A way out may be the development of individual employment for veterans and people with disabilities. 63.6% of the surveyed veterans said they wanted to start their own business. This is three times more than in the country as a whole in peaceful 2018,” the study notes, citing previously published sociological research.
Other factors contributing to the development of self-employment among veterans include their unwillingness to accept their current social situation. “Companies record cases of dismissal of veterans for reasons that are not clear at first glance. Upon closer inspection, it turns out that the employee was in command of a unit during the war, but in civilian life he returns to the position of a subordinate. It is often difficult for demobilized employees to accept the fact that they received UAH 100,000 during their service and earn UAH 18-20,000 upon their return,” the Confederation of Employers of Ukraine study says.
Another trend in the labor market is the existing high level of distrust between employers and people with disabilities, as indicated by sociological research. This distrust is based on employers’ lack of knowledge about these people and their not always satisfactory level of qualifications. 61% of such people said that they are perceived as “unable to work” and “people with communication difficulties,” which is why employers do not want to hire them. This distrust creates a destructive phenomenon that makes it possible for some businesses to “rent” employment records to meet the 4 percent standard for hiring people with disabilities.
“Employers don’t believe in the ability of people with disabilities to work at a decent level, so they don’t want to let people they don’t trust into their companies. However, quite a few people who have recently received disability status have a specialty that they can work in in their new status. There are cases where people with disabilities are extremely qualified. As part of the Razom project, we interviewed a blind girl who graduated from the Shevchenko National University with a red diploma and simultaneously interprets three-hour negotiations while at home,” the Confederation of Employers noted. “For people with disabilities, work is extremely important, as it gives them some financial freedom and allows them to feel in demand. Staff turnover among people with disabilities is half that of employees without disabilities. The duration of work in the same position is significantly longer,” the study says.
Expectations of a negative reaction from society lead many companies to not disclose to customers the fact that services are provided by a person with a disability. In particular, this applies to transportation companies, although modern prostheses allow people with upper or lower limb amputations to adapt to driving cars and trucks or even special equipment.
The involvement of people with disabilities and veterans in the labor market is an important factor in compensating for the labor market shortage. The Confederation of Employers of Ukraine has developed the most comprehensive guide on employment of persons with disabilities, which contains practical advice on the legal requirements for their inclusion in the labor market.

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Share of women in Ukrainian IT has tripled in 10 years – GlobalLogic

The share of women in Ukrainian IT has tripled over the past 10 years and stands at 24% as of August 2022, the press service of GlobalLogic reported, based on an internal study of the company.
“According to GlobalLogic, 1,769 women work with the company in Ukraine, which is more than a quarter of all specialists. The average age of specialists is 33 years, but among IT specialists there are also women over the age of 60,” the company said.
According to GlobalLogic statistics, 81% of women in the IT field have technical specialties.
Most of the respondents started their career in the industry as a trainee or junior position, but now they have a professional level of senior, lead or even AVP (junior vice president).
According to the report, a third of the top leadership positions at GlobalLogic are held by women.
IT company “GlobalLogic Ukraine” is the largest software developer in Ukraine. It has offices and more than 4.5 thousand specialists in Kyiv, Kharkov, Lvov and Nikolaev.



Austria will accept up to 100 seriously wounded women and children from Ukraine for treatment and rehabilitation, Austrian Chancellor Karl Nehammer said.
“Yesterday I spoke with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky and Prime Minister Denys Shmygal. I offered to accept, treat and provide rehabilitation for up to 100 seriously wounded women and children. We will continue to help as much as we can!” Nehammer wrote on Twitter on Wednesday.

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Ferrexpo completed second course of Fe_munity corporate women’s leadership platform for middle-level employees.

During the 4 months of training, 86 Ferrexpo employees upgraded skills in negotiating, conflict management, change management, financing, time management, reputation and constituencies.

The project architecture also includes increasing the level of self-confidence (“dismantling of glass ceilings”), the desire and ability to be materialized professionally, without losing control over the work/life balance.

The course was taught by top speakers and coaches, such as Vache Davtyan – founder and owner of Promkabel-Electric, PanElectro network, LeaderWay; Daniil Vakhovsky – Managing Partner of Havas PR Kyiv; Olena Yuzkova – General Director, Era of International Education; Ivetta Delikatna and Olena Lobova – partners of the Old School training project; Dina Nemyrivchi – head of SalesCapital AG Ukraine; Marina Romanenko – practicing psychologist, certified international coach, founder of the Academy of Professional Parents.

Dmitriy Spatar, FPM First Deputy Chairman of the Board, Ambassador for Gender Issues at Ferrexpo:

“Fe_Munity Ferrexpo was opened in 2020 and we continue to pursue our Company goals of achieving gender balance. To date, more than 160 of our employees have gained knowledge, inspiration and motivation for their personal and professional development. We celebrate the unequivocal success of our initiative and this is confirmed by the achievements of our graduates. In 2022, Ferrexpo plans to expand the scope of our educational platform for women throughout Ukraine. In our country there are many talented women who work in various fields, and with proper support – this is a powerful force for the development of Ukraine’s economy.”

Iryna Rubis, co-author of the concept and curator of Fe_munity, co-founder of Biasless

“For the second time, Fe_Munity is ending with the writing of a final project with very clear and measurable KPIs. And the public defense of these works showed us that the graduates started thinking higher and wider, and the transformation took place not only professionally but also personally. The effect of raising at least 10 potential gender equality activists in the company and the town was unexpected. We also managed to introduce the participants of the project to educational thirst: the vast majority of graduates decided to join the educational Ferrexpo School of Inclusion project, which will start soon.”

Information about the company:

Ferrexpo – Swiss iron ore company with assets in Ukraine. The main activity of the company is the production and export of high-quality iron ore pellets used in steel production. Ferrexpo is the largest producer and exporter of pellets among the countries of the post-USSR states. Current production assets are FPM and FYM. Ferrexpo plc owns 100% of the shares of Ferrexpo AG, which, in turn, owns 100% of FPM shares and 100% of FYM shares. In 2020, the company produced 11.2 million tons of iron ore pellets. Steel enterprises from Austria, Germany, Japan, South Korea, Taiwan, China, Slovakia, Czech Republic, Turkey, Vietnam and the USA became the main consumers of the products. Ferrexpo is listed on the London Stock Exchange’s Main Board under the FXPO ticker. More information can be found on the website

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