Kyiv: A new survey conducted by the European Business Association (EBA) in Ukraine shows one third of small businesses have lost between 50-75% of their income as a result of the lockdown introduced in March.

Small businesses report significant increases in their debtors, inability to pay their suppliers, rents and rates which are due.

This meant that many were forced to close their premises which also meant that owners had to significantly reduce their workforce (33% of businesses) and cut staff salaries, in some cases by more than half (29% of businesses) or even temporarily furlough their workers (19% of businesses).

At the same time, it is expected that 7% of small businesses will not reopen their doors when the lockdown ends.

On the other hand, 14% of businesses, mainly those that provide IT services and working in tech outsourcing, have not experienced any changes to their businesses and in some cases even reported an increase in their income.

60% of businesses also reported that they are considering a change in their working practices such as allowing staff to work from home, reduce their physical branches or even completely going digital.

According to the survey, it will take about six months for 19%, one year for 38% of businesses, two or more years for 25% to reach the pre-quarantine development rates.

The EBA report urges the government to extend support and help to increase recovery of small businesses by providing cheaper loans, reducing the tax burden on the wage fund and abolishing penalties for tax violations by the end of the year.