The wage arrears in Ukraine rose by 53.4 percent since early 2021, reaching over 4 billion hryvnia, because of unprofessional and irresponsible stance of the administration. This was stated by MP Serhiy Lovochkin commenting on the data by the State Statistics Service.

“In ten months of 2021, the wage arrears increased by 53.4 percent or 1,395 million hryvnia. This is the highest rate of indebtedness rise since 2021,” Lovochkin said.

The MP noted that as of Nov. 1, the wage arrears topped 4 billion hryvnia, which is almost as much as in December 2020, when it reached its historical high in 20 years.

According to the politician, the highest growth rate for backdated salaries was reported in the following sectors: construction (+265 percent), information and telecom (+257.7 percent), culture, sports, and entertainment (199.1 percent). Still, healthcare and social protection sectors remain the leaders, with wage arrears increase of 5.5 times, or by 125.1 million hryvnia.

“The slide in backdated salaries in healthcare is a catastrophe given the third wave of the Covid-19 epidemic. This trend motivates more doctors and nurses to leave for work in neighboring countries,” the MP said.

The opposition politician said the wage arrears are yet another factor for high levels of poverty among working population, along with the income loss due to lockdowns and high unemployment and inflation rates.

“We demand that the government immediately deals with the problem of uncontrolled rise in backdated salaries. Efficient measures must be introduced to slow it down, firstly in healthcare, where the increase rate has been catastrophic,” Lovochkin said.