All leading countries who have announced quarantine measures over the coronavirus pandemic have made support for manufacturing sector and agriculture their top-priority anti-crisis measure, while Ukraine’s Cabinet of Ministers is one of the few who cut support to their nation’s economy through introducing relevant amendments to the budget, OPPOSITION PLATFORM – FOR LIFE MP Serhiy Lovochkin said.
“We did not vote for the draft budget on Monday and will not support it in the future unless the government reviews its approach to the document. In addition to increased funding for healthcare and social expenses, support for economy must be among top priorities. But the Cabinet keeps doing quite the opposite,” the politician said.
He reminded that the bill introduced by the acting administration cuts by two thirds the funding for a special institution that promotes Ukrainian export (from 45mln to 15mln hryvnia) and completely eliminates funding for trade offices abroad (from sole 25mln hryvnia to 0).
“The Cabinet has proposed to eliminate the program of partial loan guarantees that was planned at 240mln hryvnia, and the program of affordable housing, worth 100mln hryvnia. But the development sector can be the one with the quickest returns after the quarantine and might support the revival of economy and jobs,” the MP says.
According to Lovochkin, the proposed bill still has many expense items that are not vital in the times of pandemic and economic crisis. They include, for instance, ‘creating positive image of Ukraine in the world,’ with Cabinet being ready to spend 32.3mln hryvnia on it.
“Expenses on parliament are proposed to be cut by sole 2.4 percent, Supreme Court by 4.6 percent, Constitutional Court by 0.8 percent. This is even with the decision for Verkhovna Rada and judicial system to work ‘from home,’ which allows saving up much more on office and transportation expenses,” Lovochkin explained.
The politician is certain that expenses for state apparatus and judicial system can be easily halved without a damage to the state.
“OPPOSITION PLATFORM – FOR LIFE has drafted an anti-crisis plan that will help save up to 133.6bln hryvnia. We suggest that the saved funds are spent on top priorities, including healthcare (100bln), social support for citizens (90bln), support for business (15bln) and the regions (10bln). This planned amount of over 200bln hryvnia will allow support the economy and keep the jobs during these turbulent times. We propose it as an alternative to the Cabinet’s project and are ready to vote for it in the parliament,” the MP said.Follow @serhiylovochkin