2022 was a challenging year. To put a more positive spin on things, Redcliffe Partners Managing Partner Olexiy Soshenko shared with CEE Legal Matters what was, for him, the biggest positive surprise in 2022.
“In 2022 in Ukraine, it is somewhat difficult to speak of positive surprises,” Soshenko begins. “However, looking back at 2022, there was a great deal of positive spirit and support for Ukraine and Ukrainian people from our allies and friends throughout the world,” he says. He highlights that “much support has been coming from private parties and individuals acting as volunteers,” in addition to supplies of weapons, humanitarian, and financial aid from allied countries and international organizations.
Soshenko also says that “different international law firms have been providing valuable support to legal businesses in Ukraine by offering secondment opportunities to Ukrainian lawyers or subcontracting Ukrainian law firms.” He is confident “that similar support has been provided in different industries and sectors. It is evident that – once the war stops – this support will naturally convert into rebuilding, investing, and making Ukraine a prosperous state.”
For Ukraine itself, “as a result of the war, obviously new investments virtually stopped,” according to Soshenko, “but most existing businesses absorbed the shocks of the first months of the war and continue running their business in Ukraine.” He’s optimistic that, “when the situation stabilizes, there will be lots of opportunities for infrastructure, housing and construction, transport and communication, construction materials, metals, energy (both conventional and renewables), as well as the agricultural industries.” A huge amount of investment and financing will be needed for all of that, Soshenko notes. “Hopefully, most of the financing will be covered from the assets recovered from the aggressor, but financing from IFIs, foreign governments, as well as the private sector will be required as well,” he says.
Finally, according to Soshenko, “Ukraine will need not only to be rebuilt but to become a more modern and democratic state.” To that end, he reasons, “there will be a huge demand for consultants, including lawyers. Eventually, this will bring a lot of interesting opportunities for foreign parties and Ukrainians especially.” Therefore, he concludes, “I am looking with a good deal of optimism into the future of Ukraine and the entire region, which will change for the better.”