Poverty has become a national problem for Ukrainians over the past five years. This was stated by OPPOSITION PLATFORM — FOR LIFE MP Serhiy Lovochkin. According to the State Statistics Service, Ukraine’s GDP per capita in 2018 was as low as $3,095, lower than in Moldova ($3,189).
“Over the past years, Ukraine has become the poorest country in Europe. We no longer compare ourselves to Poland, but to Moldova; still, we even fall behind them. The situation when almost half of the population live on amounts less than the real cost of living is a sign of massive poverty that cannot be solved through populist slogans,” Lovochkin said.
The politician reminded that the minimum wage is set at 4,173 hryvnia in 2019, while the real cost of living for employable persons is 4,776 hryvnia.
“The situation is even worse for retirees: the minimum pension payment is 1,564 hryvnia, while the real cost of living for them is set at 3,135 hryvnia. The retirees are forced to live on money that cannot suffice for living,” he said.
Over the recent four years, the MP believes, the situation has been aggravated with the new type of poverty, the ‘utility poverty,’ with half of Ukrainian families being affected.
“The utility fees have increased fivefold on average, and this has plunged many people into misery who hadn’t considered themselves poor. Tens of millions of our citizens see this situation as a dead-end. It cannot be solved until the statements of the need to revive the economy are supported with real action plans that include restoration of peace and target markets,” Lovochkin said.
The MP announced that OPPOSITION PLATFORM — FOR LIFE has submitted draft bills in the Verkhovna Rada aimed at improving the social situation in the country, including drafts on utilities debt relief for the population, on avoiding gas and heating tariffs increase, on restoring state regulation of retail prices for basic consumer goods, and on repealing the healthcare reform and a number of provisions of the pension reform.Follow @serhiylovochkin