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First McDonald’s to open in Ukraine since the war in phases

McDonald’s, the world’s largest fast-food corporation, announced on Thursday that it was planning a phased reopening of its outlets in the war-torn country of Ukraine. According to reports, the American company has been operating in Ukraine since Russia invaded the country in February of this year. However, for the last six months, it has continued to pay its 10,000-strong workforce in the country.

‘We’ve spoken extensively with our employees, who have expressed a strong desire to return to work and see our Ukrainian restaurants reopen.  The belief that this would support a small but significant sense of normalcy has grown stronger in recent months’, McDonald’s senior vice president, Paul Pomroy, stated in a message to his employees.

There are 109 McDonald’s locations in Ukraine, but the company did not specify which locations will open first. According to reports, the company’s initial goal is to contact its vendors and ensure that supply chain constraints are resolved. As the war continues, the employees will be brought back into the stores once the supplies have been replenished.

‘Over the next few months, we will begin working with suppliers to get product to restaurants, preparing the physical properties to serve customers, bringing restaurant teams and employees back on site, and implementing enhanced procedures and protocols to support the safety of our people and customers,’ Pomroy added.

The return of McDonald’s is expected to send a message to the international business community that businesses can continue to operate even in the midst of a war. And Ukraine needs business to return because the war is rapidly depleting its coffers. Economists believe Ukraine’s economy will contract by up to 35% by the end of the year.

Meanwhile, as reported by WION, McDonald’s severed its three-decade ties in Russia, dating back to the Cold War’s end, in May of this year by selling its 850 restaurants to a franchise owner. While the fast-food corporation opens a location in Ukraine, it has no plans to return to Russia.


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