Working in Ukraine



Last updated: February 2024

While Ukraine does feature employment opportunities for expats, it is advisable that do some research to locate safe areas to work in, as the country is going through crises that can seriously affect job prospects.

In October 2013, Ukraine went into recession, and on following year, the economy shrank by 6.8%. Ukraine also lost one of its largest trading partner, Russia, because of the War in Donbass and the annexation of Crimea; a situation which just made things worse and caused the economy to shrink by 10.4% in 2015. The unemployment rate in this country also increases amidst the economic and political crises. Today, Ukraine has an unemployment rate of 8.67% which roughly amounts to 9% of the total work force.

The Job Market

Although employment opportunities are scarce especially since the country is experiencing a political crisis, expatriates will find that there are stable job available in the teaching, financial and legal sectors as well as in the growing IT industry. You'll immediately find employment in Ukraine in teaching as the demand for English is soaring as well as the teaching of other foreign languages like German, French, Italian, and Spanish. Ukraine is home to multinational companies like Price Waterhouse Coopers, KPMG and Proctor and Gamble. Other companies in Ukraine are British Airways and GlaxoSmithKline.

Average Salary and Work Conditions

At present, the monthly minimum wage in Ukraine is UAH 1,450 or USD 56 while the average monthly salary nation-wide according to the Ministry of Finances is at UAH 5,358 or USD 207. Workers in the city of Kiev are said to have higher earnings which is around UAH 8,705 (USD 336) per month compared to their counterparts in the Chernigov region where employees only earn around UAH 3,907 (USD 151) monthly. Expats with a Bachelor's degree and TEFL certifications can earn an average pay of USD 400 to USD 1,000 monthly.

Working expats need to obtain a yearly tax residence certificate in Ukraine. The normal income tax rate is 15%, but for non-residents, it rises to 30% while corporate tax is at a flat rate of 25%

A typical workweek is five working days (Monday to Friday) for 40 hours. Office hours are from 8.30a.m or 9a.m to 4:30p.m or 5p.m. Any working hours over 40 hours is considered overtime. The Ukrainian Labour Code also states that employees are entitled to a 24-hour day of rest per week and at least 24 days of paid vacation annually. This country also has laws that contain health standards and occupational safety whereas workers have the legal right to remove themselves from any form of dangerous work situations without the fear of losing their jobs.

The Ukrainian Work Culture

Foreigners used to a fast paced life, and punctuality will be surprised that in Ukraine being late is considered the norm; it is quite acceptable to be five minutes late to a business meeting. Even with technological innovations where meetings can be conducted via phone or video conference, Ukrainians still prefer to meet in person. Expats will also find it easy to form a working relationship with Ukrainians. Ukrainian companies are known to allot money for either a gift or a celebration for an employee's birthday.

Shake hands with direct eye contact is the most common way of greeting in Ukraine. If the other person doesn’t have a professional or academic title, its best to address him/her using honorific titles such as ‘Pan’ for man or ‘Pani’ for women, followed by the last name. Business cards are exchanged without particular rituals but its best for expats to have their cards printed both in English and Ukrainian. Though the locals are known for being direct communicators, expats must still know that they also put emphasis on sensitive delivery of information.


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