“Things are bad,” Svetlana, a seller at the Bessarabski market, in the center of Kiev, told Efe. The threat of a Russian attack has a negative impact on the Ukrainian economy, which needs a millionaire injection to stabilize economic activity and the national currency, the hryvnia.

“Even during the 2020 quarantine it was better, people count each kopek, all prices have risen,” laments the 48-year-old vendor, and links this situation to “bad harvests,” poor government management and the concentration of troops Russian borders near the Ukrainian borders.

The Ukrainian president, Volodímir Zelenski, recognized last Friday that the panic created at the international level due to the possibility of a war between Russia and Ukraine, has affected the country’s economy.

The president affirmed that even “leaders of respected countries” have sent alarmist messages and warned about the imminence of a war, which generates “panic in the market, panic in the financial sector.”

Something that has damaged Ukraine, which in 2021 had a record GDP and an investment portfolio that increased by $6,500 last year, but now sees $2.5 billion in investment withdrawal.


Zelensky announced that Kiev will have to spend between 4,000 and 5,000 million dollars from the national reserve to stabilize the national currency.

“It is the price we pay for unbalanced information policy,” he insisted.

Meanwhile, the Kievites do not panic and try to continue with their normal lives, there are no shortages in stores and there are no lack of customers in shopping malls, especially in the afternoon, when people leave their jobs. .

The city, in which many do not believe in the imminence of a Russian intervention, lives at its normal pace.

According to the advisor to the Ukrainian president, Oleg Ustenko, so far this year the National Bank of Ukraine has already injected into the economy about 1.5 billion dollars of its reserves, estimated at a total of 30 billion dollars, the equivalent of four months of imports.


“The economy is not limited to financial indicators, it is also about confidence. In conditions of an extremely tense news context regarding the security situation in Ukraine, it is dishonest not to talk about the need for additional support,” he said.

Zelenski’s advisor assured that despite the difficult situation the country is going through, the authorities “continue to work, the country must support its citizens and guarantee the normal functioning of the economy.”

“We are counting on the additional arrival of foreign investments in Ukraine,” he added, stressing that this would be a “positive sign” that would foster economic stability amid current tensions.

Canada has already responded to Ukraine with a promise to support its economy while the European Union studies the possibility of implementing a program of macro-financial assistance of 1.2 billion euros.

Ukraine also expects 2 billion dollars from the IMF, said Ustenko, who expressed confidence that the US will offer his country credit guarantees.


But these international economic maneuvers do not significantly change the rhythm of life of the Ukrainians, who seek to accommodate themselves to the situation.

On weekends, many allow themselves to go to cafes and bars, which are packed with a young crowd thirsty for fun.

«No excesses, I just came to rest. Nothing about politics. I can afford it,” Andrii, a 32-year-old computer scientist, confesses to Efe, more interested in finishing his drink than in talking, oblivious to the shadow of a war, to the threat of the new variant of the coronavirus, and to inflation, which continues to increase.

By the end of 2021, inflation in Ukraine reached double digits for the first time in several years, at 10%, while the price of food experienced an increase of 11.3%.

Ukraine’s Deputy Prime Minister for European and Euro-Atlantic Integration Olha Stefanishyna blamed Russia for destabilizing the country’s economy through the ongoing military escalation.

“This has a strong impact on the Ukrainian economy and demands massive financial support to ensure the stability of the banking system,” he said, noting that the country invests in its banking system every week the equivalent of all the military assistance provided by the United States. United.


To curb the increase in famine, last December the Government set the difference between wholesale and retail prices for bread, sugar and other foods at no more than 10%, and did not rule out the possibility of distributing food cards to families. most needy.

In just over a month, the Ukrainian currency has depreciated by around 7% against the US currency and has fallen to its lowest level since 2018.

Liubov, a seller at the Bessarabski market, told Efe that in Ukraine “we have pensions of 1,600 hryvnias, 2,100 hryvnias (55 and 73 dollars), and electricity and water payments are 3,000 and 4,000 hryvnias (105-140 dollars)”.

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