Ukrainian billionaire and businessman Rinat Akhmetov isn’t fighting on the front lines, trying to stop the Russian invasion of his country. But he has found a way to help the troops. He is using his steelworks and company resources to develop portable steel war shelters which can be used as protection from enemy troops and their firepower. Akhmetov is the richest man in Ukraine, giving him the ability to protect others and care for his fellow Ukrainians in unique ways.
The capsules are being built in his factory and shipped to the soldiers who are fighting right on the front line of the invasion. Since the war shelters are made in pieces and put together at their location, they can be carried in by small groups of people. That makes it easier for troops to get the shelters right where they need to go, and that means they can offer better protection and security. Most of the capsules are used as bathrooms and canteens, as well as hideouts during serious assaults from Russian troops.
Currently, 10 capsules have been produced and made their way to the troops. Rinat Akhmetov is going to make another 20 every month, for however long he needs to. There is no timeline for when the shelling and invasion will end. A steel war dugout can be buried 5 feet or more into the earth, and will withstand 150-mm rounds at that depth. That can save countless lives, as soldiers have somewhere to hide that they know will protect them.
Akhmetov is the owner of System Capital Management, which is Ukraine’s largest conglomerate in the industrial sector. Not only is he committed to protecting Ukrainian soldiers, but he is personally fighting back, as well. He filed a lawsuit in the European Court of Human Rights over the damage Russia is doing to his home country, citing their significant “violations of his property rights.” He is losing billions of dollars due to Russia’s “blockading, looting, diversion and destruction of grain and steel.”
Not only is this expensive for Akhmetov, but it is causing harm to people all over the world who are waiting on shipments of food and other items. Akhmetov has strong opinions about that, and is quoted as saying, “The looting of Ukraine’s export commodities, including grain and steel, has already resulted in higher prices and people dying of hunger worldwide.” He goes on to say that, “These barbaric actions must be stopped, and Russia must pay in full.”
Russia has no intention of paying any attention to the lawsuit, with a Kremlin spokesman saying that Russia is not under the jurisdiction of the Court and therefore the answer is “absolutely obvious.” Regardless of how Russia feels about the suit, or the losses Akhmetov is incurring, though, he will continue making the shelters for the troops. His commitment to the Ukrainian people is deep and binding, and he values charity and support for all the people in his country who need help.
He graduated from Donetsk National University with a degree in economics in 2001, after founding System Capital Management in 2000. As early as the 1990s, though, he was already acquiring properties. He has started up the Foundation of the Development of Ukraine, and also opened a Humanitarian Center which has helped thousands of people live better lives and get the help and support they need.
Rinat Akhmetov knows that he cannot stop the war in Ukraine, and only time will tell how it all turns out. But in the meantime, he can work on charitable giving, helping as many people as possible, and protecting the troops who are fighting for his and others’ freedom in their country.