Accounts receivable is a tool that helps businesses expand their customer base and incentivizes enterprises- buyers to cooperate on a post-payment basis. Proficient management and risk assessment skills assist a company in expanding its production and sales activities, leading to improved economic performance for the country as a whole. Given the full-scale armed aggression of the Russian Federation towards Ukraine, the relevance of defining and classifying the concept of accounts receivable is particularly important, as accounts receivable plays a crucial role in the financial and economic activities of a company.
The definition of the category "accounts receivable" has been studied by do-mestic and foreign scholars such as F.F.Butynets, S.F. Holov, H.H. Kireitsev, D. Stoun, K. Khitchynh, O.M. Kyiashko, T. Momot, O.H. Lyshchenko, L.O. Lihonenko, and others. However, there is no unified approach to its definition in modern condi-tions in economic literature.
The key concept that reveals the essence of accounts receivable is "debtor" (from Latin debitum - debt, obligation). The main normative document that regulates the accounting of accounts receivable is National Accounting Regulation (Standard) 10 "Accounts Receivable", which defines debtors as legal and natural persons who owe certain amounts of money, their equivalents, or other assets to the enterprise as a result of past events, and accounts receivable as "the amount of indebtedness of debt-ors to the enterprise as of a certain date" .
T. Momot provides an interesting and concise definition: "Accounts receivable - interest-free loans to counterparties." Similar in content, V.K. Orlova defines it as "the amount of indebtedness of legal or natural persons to the enterprise in the form of money, their equivalents, or other assets as a result of past events," and O.Ye. Fedorchenko defines it as "the sum of debts of legal and natural persons to the enterprise in cash and non-cash forms, arising from business transactions resulting from past events and subject to repayment in the future".
M.D. Bilyk  considers accounts receivable as "property that is unpaid by counterparties or cash withdrawn from the circulation of working capital." In our opinion, this statement is not entirely accurate, as cash, although withdrawn from cir-culation, is reflected as a liability of debtors in the form of accounting form No. 1 "Balance Sheet (Statement of Financial Position)".
In terms of contemporary Ukrainian scholars, Ye.V. Dubrovska [8, p. 202] de-fines accounts receivable as "unpaid goods (works, services) and/or withdrawn funds from the circulation of an enterprise, which have documentary evidence entitling to receive the debt in the form of cash, their equivalents or other assets".
The opinions of scholars on the definition of the concept of "accounts receiva-ble" in economic literature and regulatory acts are summarized in Table 1.
Table 1 - Scholars' Opinions on the Definition of the Concept of "Accounts Receivable" in Economic Literature*
In our opinion, the most accurate definition is the statement by L.O. Lihonen-ko, O.M. Kyiashko, but they require further development. Therefore, we consider accounts receivable as a legally confirmed right of the selling enterprise to receive from the buying enterprise cash, their equivalents, or other assets for the shipped products, goods, works, and services that arose on a certain date as a result of past events.
Based on the analysis of economic literature on approaches to defining the con-cept of "accounts receivable", it can be concluded that its role in economic processes is significant. Accounts receivable serves as a catalyst for trade and a financial lever in the hands of knowledgeable and decisive managers, helping to develop the enterprise. However, it should be noted that due to the war, not all debtors may be able to fulfill their obligations in settlements, which in turn leads to an increase in overdue accounts receivable, and can ultimately result in the bankruptcy of the enterprise.
Among the factors that lead to the inability of debtors to settle for services or goods, it should be noted: weakening of the national currency exchange rate; reduc-tion in the volume of goods and services production; electricity shortage; reduction in investments from Western partners; inability to fulfill export orders in full due to blocked ports; destroyed infrastructure (according to data from the Kyiv School of Economics as of 08.08.2022, losses amounted to 33.4 billion USD ); destruction of enterprise assets (according to data from the Kyiv School of Economics as of 08.08.2022, losses amounted to 8.8 billion USD ).
The increase in delivery times and the rise in prices for imported goods and components should also be mentioned. Previously, there was direct delivery to the ports of Odesa from anywhere in the world via maritime routes, with maritime freight to Odesa costing $2,000. The cost of transportation within the Black Sea region to other ports was the same as to Odesa. However, now there are additional costs. If containers arrive at European ports, there are additional expenses for document re-processing and container-to-truck transshipment. The cost of transportation from a European port to Ukraine is also added. If we consider the final delivery from Odesa to Kyiv, we have a distance of 500 km by road. The truck takes one to two days for transportation.
Now, from European ports, additional factors such as distance, border cross-ing, and customs documents are added. And all of this affects the cost, which current-ly exceeds maritime freight and has doubled. In peacetime, delivery used to take 2 days, but now it takes 7-10 days .
In our opinion, Ukraine's economy has endured the hardest hit since the begin-ning of the conflict, and currently, debtors require support from the government, in-cluding:
-development of new procedures for faster cargo processing at customs;
-attracting Western investments for infrastructure restoration (repair of bridges and roads);
-assistance to the sectors that suffered the most during the aggression in the form of state subsidies, provision of loans at preferential rates, and reduc-tion of tax burden.
It is necessary to search for balanced ways to overcome the situation, which will help to replenish the budget, including through solving logistics issues such as exports, and finding an optimal model for the taxation system. Only in this way we can quickly defeat the enemy and return to peaceful life .
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5.Butynets F.F. (2006). Teoriia bukhhalterskoho obliku [Theory of accounting]. Zhytomyr: PP Ruta[in Ukrainian].
6.Holov S. F., Kostiuchenko V. M. (2004). Bukhhalterskyi oblik ta finansova zvitnist za mizhnarodnymy standartamy [Accounting and financial reporting according to internation-al standards]. Kyiv: Libra[in Ukrainian].
7.Debitorska zaborhovanist: polozhennia (standart) bukhhalterskoho obliku 10, zatv. Nakaz-om MFU vid 08 October 1999 roku № 237 [National Accounting Regulation (Standard) 10 "Accounts Receivable" from October 08 1999, № 237]. (2020, November 03). Retrieved fromhttps://zakon.rada.gov.ua/laws/show/z0725-99/conv#Text. [in Ukrainian].
8.Dubrovska Ye. V. (2009). Doslidzhennia sutnosti poniattia «debitorska zaborhovanist» [Study of the essence of the concept of "receivables"].VisnykSumskohoderzhavnohouniversytetu - Bulletin of Sumy State University, 2, 202-205 [in Ukrainian].
9.Kyiashko O.M. (2011). Oblik ta analiz debitorskoi zaborhovanosti v systemi upravlinnia pidpryiemstvom [Accounting and analysis of receivables in the enterprise management sys-tem]. Extended abstract of candidate’s thesis. Kyiv: Kyiv National University of Trade and Economics [in Ukrainian].
10.Kireitsev H.H. (2002). Finansovyi menedzhment [Financial Management]. Kyiv: TsUL[in Ukrainian].
11.Lyshchenko O. H., Beskosta H. M. (2009). Analiz debitorskoi zaborhovanosti v systemi up-ravlinnia pidpryiemstvom [Analysis of receivables in the enterprise management system]. Derzhavatarehiony- State and regions, 1, 114–117 [in Ukrainian].
12.Lihonenko L.O., Novikova N.M. (2005). Upravlinnia debitorskoiu zaborhovanistiu pidpry-iemstva [Management of receivables of the enterprise]. Kyiv: Kyiv. nats. torh.-ekon. un-t [in Ukrainian].
13.Momot T. (2003). Upravlenie debitorskoj zadolzhennostyu predpriyatiya [Management of the enterprise's receivables]. Biznesinform- Businessinform, 11–12, 97–99 [in Russian].
14.Orlova V.K., Orlov M.S., Khoma S.V. (2010). Finansovyi oblik [Financial Accounting]. Kyiv: TsUL[in Ukrainian].
15.Stoun D., Khytchynh K. (1998). Buhgalterskij uchet i finansovyj analiz [Accounting and fi-nancial analysis]. Мoscow: Syryn[in Russian].
16.Fedorchenko O.Ye. (2009). Oblik i analiz rozrakhunkiv z debitoramy (na prykladi tekstyl-nykh pidpryiemstv lehkoi promyslovosti) [Accounting and analysis of settlements with debtors (on the example of textile enterprises of light industry)].Extended abstract of can-didate’s thesis. Kyiv: Kyiv National University of Economics named by Vadim Hetman [in Ukrainian].