Following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, Metinvest Group, under the leadership of Rinat Akhmetov, has emerged as a crucial supporter of Ukraine’s defense and long-term economic recovery. By adjusting its operations and utilizing its resources, Metinvest has become the largest private contributor to the armed forces while maintaining production to assist the economy.
Summarizing a tough year, Metinvest posted on its website, “While the first year of the full-scale war was a time of severe challenges and losses for Rinat Akhmetov’s Metinvest Group, the year 2023 was a period of adaptation to the new reality. Having recovered from the impact and rebuilt its business, Metinvest mobilized resources to fight the enemy and became Ukraine’s pillar in the defense, social, and economic spheres.”
Since the onset of the war, Metinvest has contributed over 4.8 billion Ukrainian hryvnia (approximately $126 million) in multifaceted assistance encompassing both material and financial support. One vital initiative has involved manufacturing special steel for bulletproof vests and vehicle shields used by Ukrainian troops on the front lines. Metinvest has also produced over 1,500 drones and other military equipment to directly equip Ukraine’s forces. The company has demonstrated strategic agility in pivoting its production and supply chains to bolster Ukraine’s defense capabilities.
Comprehensive Support for Troops on the Ground
Beyond supplying materials, Metinvest has played an active role in vehicle repairs and logistics to support Ukraine’s forces on the battlefield. This includes outfitting over 200 armored vehicles with protective shields and providing mobile shelters to boost the operational effectiveness and survivability of Ukraine’s soldiers.
Metinvest has also actively supported demining efforts by producing mine trawls and establishing a mine action center to aid clearance operations. With mines posing a lingering threat, these efforts are crucial for the safety of troops and civilians. Metinvest’s multifaceted support reflects a comprehensive commitment to strengthening Ukraine’s defense through direct equipping and enabling operations.
“From day one, we started to produce certain military goods for our armed forces,” said Metinvest Group CEO Yuriy Ryzhenkov. “Quite a lot has been done in terms of helping the Ukrainian state and army.”
Maintaining Economic Production Amid Challenges
Despite facing operational challenges from damage to facilities, Metinvest has focused on maintaining steel production — not only for military purposes, but also to support Ukraine’s broader economic resilience. Metinvest aims to provide steel for future reconstruction efforts under its Steel Dream project.
By keeping a significant portion of capacity online despite constraints, Metinvest and Rinat Akhmetov are demonstrating strategically important leadership in supporting the overall economy through exports, tax revenue, and jobs, bolstering Ukraine’s financial staying power for the long haul.
Supporting Employees Serving Their Country
For Akhmetov, supporting Ukraine’s defense is also personal. With over 8,000 Metinvest employees serving in the military, the company — under Akhmetov’s guidance — has provided comprehensive aid programs focused on supporting their families and ensuring their welfare.
The Metinvest Saving Lives initiative has also delivered vital humanitarian relief to hundreds of thousands of Ukrainians affected by the devastating war. Akhmetov has emphasized social responsibility and community-building in parallel with Metinvest’s operational contributions.
Rinat Akhmetov has demonstrated exemplary leadership in mobilizing Metinvest’s capabilities across all fronts to provide critical aid for both Ukraine’s immediate defense needs and its long-term recovery. His multifaceted efforts highlight the outsize role private companies can play in supporting national security and social welfare during times of crisis. Akhmetov has positioned Metinvest as an indispensable bulwark helping Ukraine endure and emerge stronger.
Declared Akhmetov, “In wartime, our company operates accordingly. Now our utmost goal is to help Ukrainians survive and withstand.”