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Kyiv Post has diverted the attention from Norway last week to Sweden this week with two large articles.

Ukraine Nu always focus on the Scandinavian perspective of doing business in Ukraine, but in the past weeks, local Ukrainian outlet Kyiv Post has also been looking toward the northern countries.

Today, Kyiv Post is focusing on Swedish-Ukrainian farm operator Grain Alliance who is operating 60,000 hectares leased among 28,000 different private individuals. They also interviewed the Swedish ambassador, Tobias Thyberg, who showed support for the Ukrainian position on Nord Stream 2 and requested rule of law reforms.

Sweden’s position is that Nord Stream 2 can’t be considered as either a purely commercial project or a purely bilateral matter between Germany and Russia,” he said. “We regret that European institutions have not been able to have a greater influence on decision making regarding Nord Stream 2.”

Ukraine Nu previously interviewed the Swedish ambassador. The article is in Danish but there is a built in translation feature on the site, that google translates articles for you. In the interview he gives more lengthy answers on economic and diplomatic prospects in Ukraine.

We also have an interview with Swedish Business Association, with Volvo Trucks,  we visited Scania in Donbas and we are following their struggle with the judicial system, where they are in the middle of a courtroom battle.

Norwegian focus

The Norwegians are not happy about the investment climate in Ukraine. That seems to be the premise of a big interview with the ambassador of Norway, Erik Svedahl, posted on Kyiv Post. Especially in the sector of green energy, Norway has interests, with energy companies as Scatec and NBT making large investments in Ukraine.

Companies like those are often owed millions of dollars by the Ukranian state, who lately cut the rates with the energy companies last summer. International institutions, energy companies and local political groups were not impressed with the price changes that made green energy investment less attractive.

“The price is the issue,” Prime Minister Denys Shmygal said late last spring “We cannot have the most expensive green energy in Europe in a country with such poverty levels. We are all in the same boat. That cannot be true that the country loses, the budget loses, and we pay an increased price for green energy. We do not want to limit investment; we want to understand the value of this energy. This is our responsibility to the country.”

Interview with Erik

About half a year ago, Ukraine Nu also interviewed Erik Svedahl. He was asked “how do you see Ukraine’s economic potential? And how does Norway fit into the economy?,” and answered:

Ukraine has great economic potential with its rich natural resources and a large and well-educated population. Trade with Norway is still limited, but in gradual positive development. Norway exports a lot of fish to Ukraine, while ski and IT services are among the most important Ukrainian exports to Norway,”

“Over 2000 Ukrainian IT specialists work for Norwegian companies. Norwegian business interest in Ukraine is growing, and the Norwegian-Ukrainian Chamber of Commerce (NUCC) in Oslo is doing an admirable job of identifying new opportunities for trade and economic cooperation. Norway is also a significant player in renewable energy in Ukraine. In 2019, Norwegian investment in this sector actually accounted for almost 20 percent of total foreign direct investment (FDI) in Ukraine.” 

The full interview can be found here (Written in Danish).