The conflict that was speculated for months is now upon us, with Vladimir Putin launching Russia’s military operation in Ukraine. An official state of emergency has been declared.
According to our Global Network partners in the region, the government is still operating and is urging citizens to stay at home while recommending that residents of Kiev and Vinnista had to their local bomb shelters. Additionally:
- Public transportation generally continues to operate; in Kiev, it is free of charge
- Queues should be expected at ATMs, pharmacies and gas stations
- Schools, including kindergartens and international schools, are temporarily closed
- All civil flights into and out of Kiev have been suspended
- A curfew has been introduced from 22:00 to 06:00 (or 07:00 depending on region) in Kiev, the Kharkov region, the Dnepr region, the Cherkasy region, the Vinnitsa region, the Zaporozhye region, Rovno and the Poltava region.
While the situation is fluid and evolving quickly, there will obviously be an impact to businesses and global assignees in Ukraine. Intermark Relocation, one of our Russia-based accredited Global Network Representatives, has provided the following update:
Expat Community Response
- A growing number of expats are being evacuated or are departing from Ukraine due to the growing conflict
- A number of countries are moving the locations of their embassies from Kiev to Lviv (located in the Western part of the country) and repatriating some employees and families
- Governments of many countries have already recommended that their citizens working in Ukraine return home
Local Conditions Affecting Mobility
- A growing number of expats are leaving and vacating properties through force majeure or diplomatic clauses
- The National Bank of Ukraine is temporarily limiting cash withdrawals from ATMs (100,000 Ukrainian hryvnia a day, about $3,339 USD). In the pro-Russian area of Donetsk, the central bank of the self-proclaimed Donetsk republic in eastern Ukraine is limiting ATM withdrawals to 10,000 rubles ($129 USD) per day. In our duty of care whitepaper – an excellent guide for events such as this – we’ve cited the importance for employees to have access to cash if needed
- Internet outages can limit ability to bank electronically and for companies to communicate with employees. Back-up communication plans should be in place
- Immigration documents procurement, as well as entry in Ukraine are temporarily suspended due to military emergency and martial law
- Moving services are not currently available in Ukraine
As always, Weichert staff and service partners around the globe will be monitoring this situation as it continues to unfold and providing updates to ensure safety for our clients, colleagues and global assignees.
While we will be reaching out to clients with large populations in the affected regions, we encourage you to contact your Weichert Client Services Director with any questions or concerns.