Numerous problems of Ukraine’s healthcare system that surfaced due to COVID-19 pandemic had been put in place by previous administration that underfunded healthcare expenses. This was stated by OPPOSITION PLATFORM – FOR LIFE MP Serhiy Lovochkin commenting on the State Treasury data on Q1 state budget performance indicators.
The politician said budget revenues in January – March fell short of the plan by 27.6bln hryvnia, or 11.6 percent of the total amount. Almost all the revenue shortfall, 26.5bln hryvnia, comes from underperformance of tax and customs services.
“The government had been watching the budget crisis caused by fiscal agencies for six months and failed to take any measures; the budget crisis has started way before the quarantine,” the MP said.
According to Lovochkin, the catastrophe with the budget revenues logically led to underfunding of several budget sectors.
“The priorities were set wrongly: healthcare was underfunded by 18 percent in Q1, and in March, when the quarantine measures were introduced, the shortfall of funding grew even bigger compared to January and February,” Lovochkin said.
The politician is certain that the Cabinet fails to understand which budget items must be funded on a first-priority basis under current conditions. This led to other important sectors being underfunded in Q1, including social protection of citizens (by 6.8 percent or 5.6bln hryvnia) and economy support (by 23 percent or 1.2bln hryvnia).
“Given the epidemic and the crisis, things must have been done the other way around. These expenses must be funded as top priorities and at least by 100 percent, not to mention that the planned amount should have been increased. This is the way all developed countries do,” the politician said.
“The worst part is that the new version of the budget bill does not provide for such priorities. Therefore, OPPOSITION PLATFORM – FOR LIFE insists that the parliament adopts the state budget amendments that are included in our Anti-crisis plan. Otherwise its revenue shortfall in the following quarters will be even more disastrous that in the first three months,” Lovochkin said.Follow @serhiylovochkin