Reconstruction Based on Integrity: The Road to a New Ukraine

UNDP, with funding from Japan, supported the annual meeting of Ukrainian business representatives in Kyiv

May 12, 2023
Photo: Yullia Ostroushko / UNDP Ukraine

Kyiv, 11 May 2023 – The Business Integrity Month – a traditional initiative launched by the Ukrainian Network of Integrity and Compliance (UNIC), kicked off today. A series of events dedicated to integrity business conduct issues in wartime conditions will be held over the next month. 

This year, the Month of Business Integrity began with the General Meeting of UNIC members, which was titled "Reconstruction Based on Integrity: The Road to a New Ukraine.” The event was held with the support of the United Nations Development Programme in Ukraine and with funding from the Japanese government, the EU Anti-Corruption Initiative in Ukraine, and with expert support from the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD).

This year, the overarching theme of the Business Integrity Month events will be good business conduct in wartime – a particularly urgent topic given that reliable partnership relations to help Ukraine its recovery and reconstruction efforts will have to be established and comprehensively developed.

Ukrainian Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal, UNDP Resident Representative Jaco Cilliers and the Deputy Secretary General of the OECD Keri-Ann Jones spoke at the opening of the General Meeting.

In his welcome remarks, Prime Minister Shmyhal emphasized the importance of combining the efforts of the state and business in the restoration of Ukraine. 

“We joined forces to fight against the aggressor, (and) we have to work as a team for the sake of recovery – which begins today. The restoration of Ukraine is not just the rebuilding of destroyed buildings and bridges. It’s a complete transformation based on the principle of ‘build back better,’ i.e. rebuild it better than it was, with the implementation of all necessary reforms, and with transparency, accountability and integrity.”

Jaco Cilliers, UNDP Resident Representative in Ukraine said Ukraine needs transparent and accountable enterprises that can attract investors and partners from all over the world 

"We believe that having integrity and the ethical conduct of business as fundamental principles will contribute to the stable development of the country," Cilliers said.

The head of the UNIC Secretariat, Antonina Prudko, also said that the integrity of Ukrainian business would play a key role in the process of rebuilding the country, and that this, in turn, would require an extremely high level of transparency and accountability.

"We have to create the conditions in which international donors, investors, companies and local enterprises will be interested in joining one of the largest post-war reconstruction projects in history,” Prudko said.

“The implementation of such a project is impossible without building a modern ecosystem of ethical business, which is the main goal of today's event and the UNIC’s activities as a whole.”

Background information

The Ukrainian Network of Integrity and Compliance (UNIC) was founded in 2017 with the support of the Business Ombudsman Council, the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) and the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD).

Cooperation between the United Nations Development Programme in Ukraine and the UNIC is implemented with the financial support of the Japanese government.