Breath of Spring: Are Rain Clouds Gathering? Main economic trends and expectations in April 2023,according to the results of a new monthly enterprise survey
On May, 15, 2023, the Institute for Economic Research and Policy Consulting ” (IER), within the project “Support of the Public Initiative “For Fair and Transparent Customs,” held an online event “Economic trends from the business point of view (April 2023)”.
The results of the Twelfth monthly survey of enterprise managers, “Ukrainian business in wartime,” conducted in April 2023 were presented at the event.
In April, the share of enterprises that positively assess the current situation increased by 9%, while the share of those who plan growth for the coming months decreased by 10%.
Oksana Kuziakiv, executive director at IER, said this during the presentation of the monthly survey of the Ukrainian business “Economic trends during wartime from the business point of view. April 2023.”
According to data released in April 2023, the share of enterprise managers who believe the situation is better than a year ago increased from 41% to 50%. At the same time, the percentage of those whose situation is worse than a year ago decreased from 43% to 30%.
“In April 2023, enterprises continued to resume production. And the percentage of those who work almost at full capacity is the highest in the last 12 months,” noted Oksana Kuziakiv.
At the same time, if assessments of the current situation in the country and business activity at enterprises continue to improve, expectations and assessments of the near future (in the six- and three-month horizon) continue to decrease.
“Expectations and business plans for the next three months remain cautious. And in the distant future, the plans for the next two years also continue to be vague,” Oksana Kuziakiv noted.
For example, in April, compared to March 2023, the share of enterprises that plan to increase production in the next three-four months decreased from 60.1% to 50.2%. And at the same time, the share of those who plan to reduce production increased from 3.8% in March to 6.1% in April.
“The reason here is clear. If at the beginning of the war, a year ago, or in the summer, the duration of active military actions could be predicted up to a year or two, then it is obvious that now, due to the impossibility of determining clear deadlines, when it will all end, we see this kind of business reaction,” said Oksana Kuziakiv.
Lack of labor remains one of the obstacles to doing business.
“Among all the obstacles to doing business in Ukraine, the lack of labor ranks fifth – 31% of surveyed enterprises point to problems with finding personnel,” said Oksana Kuziakiv.
Thus, in April, the share of businesses experiencing a lack of skilled workers increased to 26.9% from 19.9% in March. At the same time, there was a decrease in the number of employers (from 7% to 4.9%) who reported that it was easy for them to find unskilled workers.
Therefore, companies are in no hurry to increase their staff. They plan to increase the number of workers by only 5.6% (against 8.3% in March). And more than 91% do not expect changes in employment (88.3% did so in March).
“If we look at this indicator by the enterprise size, we will see that the problem of finding personnel is more acute in large and medium-sized enterprises, in contrast to small and micro-businesses. This trend may indicate the first attempts of large and medium-sized businesses to resort to development,” noted Oksana Kuziakiv.
The video recording of the presentation is available at: https://www.facebook.com/watch/live/?ref=watch_permalink&v=786249322930076