McDonald’s plans to reopen in Kyiv and western Ukraine

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McDonald’s restaurants in Kyiv have been closed since March

McDonald’s has announced plans to reopen outlets in Ukraine, which closed after the Russian invasion in March.

The fast-food chain said it hoped the move would help restore a “small but important sense of normalcy”.

There will be a gradual reopening over the next few months in Kyiv and western Ukraine in areas deemed safe, the burger giant said.

McDonald’s had over 100 restaurants in Ukraine before the conflict began.

The company has continued to pay salaries to over 10,000 employees since then.

“We have spoken extensively to our employees who have expressed a strong desire to return to work and see our restaurants in Ukraine reopen, where it is safe and responsible to do so,” Vice President Paul Pomroy said. said in a post on the company’s website.

“In recent months, the belief that this would support a small but important sense of normalcy has grown stronger. And Ukrainian officials have indicated that the resumption of business activity will support the local economy and the Ukrainian people.”

Analysts expect the war to trigger an economic decline of 35% or more in Ukraine this year, disrupting exports, devastating key infrastructure and forcing the closure of thousands of businesses.

In June, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky spoke at a meeting Western business leaders hosted by Yale University and urged businesses to invest in the country.

He also celebrated the reopening of dozens of embassies in Kyiv, including the UK’s in April.

McDonald’s said it was working with suppliers and contractors to ensure restaurants were ready for reopening.

KFC, Nike and Zara are among other Western brands whose stores are said to be open in the country.

McDonald’s also suspended operations in Russia in March and in May sold most of its Russian restaurants to a local licensee.

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