News / Europe

'Cloudsource to Ukraine' to Boost Country's IT Sector

FILE - A supporter of the pro-presidential Party of the Regions takes pictures of a rally to support EU integration, with riot police and Interior Ministry personnel blocking a street in the foreground, in central Kyiv, December 2013.
FILE - A supporter of the pro-presidential Party of the Regions takes pictures of a rally to support EU integration, with riot police and Interior Ministry personnel blocking a street in the foreground, in central Kyiv, December 2013.
Even before the current standoff with Russia, the nation of Ukraine has been in dire need of economic expansion.
 
Now, some leaders in Internet technology say they have a solution that could help lift Ukraine economically, and at the same time, knit it more closely to Europe and the U.S.
 
Called "Cloudsource to Ukraine," the plan is designed to convince major European and American companies to move their IT operations to Ukraine through the Internet.
 
“This is one of the booming sectors in Ukraine," Pavlo Sheremeta, Ukraine's minister of economic development, said earlier this month. Sheremeta said his goal is to turn the beleaguered Ukrainian nation into "the Silicon Valley of Europe."
 
Global IT

Global IT outsourcing is a thriving economic field, generating an estimated $250 to $300 billion dollars of activity each year. Historically, India and Brazil have been among the leaders in the industry, due to their large, well-educated populations and extensive IT infrastructure.
 
But Ukraine has these assets as well, said Alex Konanykhin, who heads the IT outsourcing firm Transparent Business.
 
"Currently, Ukrainian IT outsourcing sector amounts to roughly $1.5 billion, while just one Indian outsourcing company - Infosys - has revenues four times higher and employs 160,000 people," Konanykhin told VOA. "IT outsourcing in India is a $140 billion a year business. So, you can see that Ukrainian outsourcing sector has huge room for growth and we are determined to fuel this growth."
 
Konanykhin's firm is assisting Ukrainian officials in making the case that Ukraine is a good place to do business. Ukraine has long been known for having a very tech-savvy, young population.
 
Konanykhin believes multi-national firms can outsource their IT needs to Ukraine at less cost than well-established locations like India.
 
But with parts of Ukraine under siege from pro-Russian separatists, that could prove a difficult sell, analysts say.

Russian reach

In general, the conflict between Kyiv and Russian-leaning separatists has destabilized Ukraine's economy as a whole. The threat of possible military action by Russia doesn't help matters.
 
Jeffrey Car, CEO of the IT security firm Taia Global, said Russia installed and still may have control over large portions of Ukraine's data and communications networks.
 
"After the break-up of the Soviet Union, Russia made a point to organize and install the communications systems of the newly independent states," Carr said.
 
"They pretty much own much of Ukraine's Internet,” he said. “If they wanted to shut it down, or just significantly slow it up, it would be no problem."
 
Still, Ukraine - unlike Georgia in 2008 for example - doesn't run  its electronic traffic through lines and servers to Russia. Much of Western Ukrainian data traffic flows through lines coming from Europe, which could prove much harder to shut down.
 
And analyst Konanykhin said that ultimately, economics will make the case for Ukrainian outsourcing, not geo-politics.
 
"Many business leaders are disturbed with Putin threatening political and economic stability of the world, but they don’t know how they can influence the situation," he said.
 
"Our message is that they can help simply by selecting Ukraine for their IT outsourcing needs,” he said. “They can increase profits and support democracy at the same time.

Doug Bernard

dbjohnson+voanews.com

Doug Bernard covers cyber-issues for VOA, focusing on Internet privacy, security and censorship circumvention. Previously he edited VOA’s “Digital Frontiers” blog, produced the “Daily Download” webcast and hosted “Talk to America”, for which he won the International Presenter of the Year award from the Association for International Broadcasting. He began his career at Michigan Public Radio, and has contributed to "The New York Times," the "Christian Science Monitor," SPIN and NPR, among others. You can follow him @dfrontiers.

You May Like

Nigeria Incumbent in Tight Spot as Poll Nears

Muhammadu Buhari is running a strong challenge to Goodluck Jonathan, amid a faltering economy and Boko Haram security worries More

Video Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grieving

Beatrice Yardolo tells VOA that despite her fame, life is still a struggle as she waits for government's promise of support to arrive More

Video Cambodian Land Grabs Threaten Traditional Communities

At least seven different indigenous groups in Ratanakiri depend mainly on forest products for their survival, say they face loss of their land, traditional way of life More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Alexander Scheirer from: Connecticut, USA
April 29, 2014 8:33 PM
As an attorney, I must comment that Ukraine has a quite robust presence on the internet given the number fraud "scams" that are run out of and traced back to the Ukraine. Not a good move as proposed. At best, hare brained proposition..
In Response

by: Alex from: Illinois
April 30, 2014 11:08 AM
That would be the dummest move for any company. I had my website broken into, and site was set up to send future customer information to the hackers after US company outsourced the website building to Ukraine IT person. A cloudsourcing to Ukraine is like giving a robbber keys to the house on a silver plater. Too much corruption, poor man's mentality- everyone steals something, even petty stuff. I hope that people with brains in Washington realize that its not worth a penny at best, and back off from flushing the money and their competance because of brief, disconnected from reality political propoganda

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grievingi
X
Benno Muchler
March 26, 2015 3:41 PM
Beatrice Yardolo was to make history as Liberia’s last Ebola patient. Liberians recently started counting down 42 days, the period that has to go by without a single new infection until the World Health Organization can declare a country Ebola-free. That countdown stopped on March 20 when there was another new case of Ebola, making Yardolo’s story a reminder that Ebola is far from over. Benno Muchler reports from Monrovia.
Video

Video Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grieving

Beatrice Yardolo was to make history as Liberia’s last Ebola patient. Liberians recently started counting down 42 days, the period that has to go by without a single new infection until the World Health Organization can declare a country Ebola-free. That countdown stopped on March 20 when there was another new case of Ebola, making Yardolo’s story a reminder that Ebola is far from over. Benno Muchler reports from Monrovia.
Video

Video Cambodian Land Grabs Threaten Traditional Communities

Indigenous communities in Cambodia's Ratanakiri province say the government’s economic land concession policy is taking away their land and traditional way of life, making many fear that their identity will soon be lost. Local authorities, though, have denied this is the case. VOA's Say Mony went to investigate and filed this report, narrated by Colin Lovett.
Video

Video US, South Korea Conduct Joint Military Exercises

The Eighth U.S. Army Division and the Eighth Republic of Korea Mechanized Infantry Division put on a well orchestrated show of force for the media this week during their joint military training exercises in South Korea. VOA’s Seoul correspondent Brian Padden was there and reports the soldiers were well disciplined both in conducting a complex live fire exercise and in staying on message with the press.
Video

Video Space Program Status Disappoints 'Last Man on the Moon'

One of the films that drew big crowds last week at the annual South by Southwest festival in Austin, Texas, tells the story of the last human being to stand on the moon, U.S. astronaut Eugene Cernan. It has been 42 years since Cernan returned from the moon and he laments that no one else has gone there since. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports.
Video

Video Young Filmmakers Shine Spotlight on Giving Back

A group of student filmmakers from across the United States joined President Barack Obama at the White House this month for the second annual White House Student Film Festival. Fifteen short films were officially selected from more than 1,500 entries by students aged 6 through 18. The filmmakers and their families then joined the president and a group of celebrities for a screening of their films. VOA’s Julie Taboh reports.
Video

Video VOA Exclusive: Interview with Afghan President Ashraf Ghani

Afghan President Ashraf Ghani, during his first visit as president to Washington, gave a one-on-one interview with VOA Afghan Service reporter Said Suleiman Ashna, about his request for a change in U.S. troop levels, the threat from the Islamic State, and repairing relations with the United States and Pakistan. The interview was held at Blair House, late Sunday, in Pashto.
Video

Video California Science Center Tells Story of Dead Sea Scrolls

The ancient manuscripts were uncovered in the mid-20th century, and they are still yielding clues about life and religious beliefs in ancient Israel. As VOA's Mike O'Sullivan reports, an exhibit in Los Angeles shows how modern science is bringing the history of these ancient documents to life.
Video

Video Angelina Jolie Takes Another Bold Step

Hollywood actress and filmmaker Angelina Jolie has revealed she had her ovaries and fallopian tubes removed to lower her odds of getting cancer. Doctors say the huge publicity over her decision will help raise awareness about the importance of cancer screening. VOA’s George Putic has more

All About America

Circumventing Censorship

An Internet Primer for Healthy Web Habits

As surveillance and censoring technologies advance, so, too, do new tools for your computer or mobile device that help protect your privacy and break through Internet censorship.
More