“Doing business transparently should become trendy,” Business Ombudsman of Ukraine Algirdas Śemeta

In the second quarter of 2017, the Business Ombudsman received 237 complaints from entrepreneurs and closed 192 investigations. The direct financial impact of the Council’s operations in the reporting period equalled UAH 495 million, and exceeded UAH 10.2 billion for the whole period of operations. 97% of complainants are satisfied with the result of cooperating with the BOC.
Tax issues remained the most pressing for Ukrainian business (44% of all complaints received), yet the number of tax-related queries dropped by 12% since previous quarter. The number of complaints regarding actions of local councils/ municipalities and customs issues decreased by 57% and 53% respectively. However, the number of complaints regarding the actions of the State Security Service of Ukraine and the Ministry of Justice increased by 60% and 38% respectively.
Small and medium-sized businesses remained the main source of complaints (63%), although the number of inquiries from large enterprises has grown by 7 percentage points in comparison to the previous quarter. Ukrainian companies lodged 72% of complaints, yet the share of inquiries from foreign companies is gradually increasing. Complaints were coming predominantly from wholesalers, manufacturers and real estate market players. Most active complainants were in the city of Kyiv (118) as well as in Kyiv (24), Odesa (14) and Dnipropetrovsk (12) oblasts.
In the second quarter, the Council prepared systemic report analysing problem of raidership. The report provides an analysis of legislation in the field of fighting raiders as well as the problems that prevent law enforcement authorities from effectively performing their work. The report contains a list of recommendations aimed at improving the efficiency of fighting raiders and implanting business integrity into business core.
On May 19, the Business Ombudsman Council together with the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development and the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development presented the Ukrainian Network of Integrity and Compliance (UNIC), a new initiative for businesses that want to work transparently. The purpose of this network is to promote the idea of doing business ethically and responsibly. As of now, 46 companies have signed the pledge of integrity. The development of the network is ongoing.
“For over two years, we have been successfully defending the rights of Ukrainian entrepreneurs. However, we see our role not only in solving specific complaints, but also in promoting the idea of responsible conduct of business. Doing business transparently, without getting stuck in corruption schemes, should become trendy”, says Algirdas Śemeta, the Business Ombudsman.
You can find reports in English and Ukrainian here: https://boi.org.ua/en/reports/

Next news: Applications to join the Ukrainian Network of Integrity and Compliance are being accepted