9.5 mln residents of hromadas to receive quality administrative services with support of U-LEAD with Europe Programme

A total of 9.5 million Ukrainians, mostly residents of amalgamated hromadas and small cities, will begin to receive administrative services in modern ASCs as a result of support of the U-LEAD with Europe Programme. U-LEAD’s Support to Improved Administrative Service Delivery team presented these results of the Programme’s participants selection and development of the Terms of References for Administrative Service Centres creation or modernisation, conducted during 2018-2019. The presentation was held at the “Bringing Services Closer” conference, which brought together more than 400 hromada leaders, ASC heads and experts in the field of administrative services to the Ukrainian House in Kyiv on February 18.

The establishment and modernisation of well-functioning ASCs in Ukraine is one of the two key areas of the U-LEAD with Europe Programme, funded by the European Union and its Member States Germany, Estonia, Denmark, Poland and Sweden. According to the Terms of Reference, developed by the Programme, 816 access points to administrative services will be established in the Ukrainian hromadas by April 2021: 490 well-functioning ASCs and 326 remote workplaces of administrators. These new and modernised municipal institutions will provide residents with a wide range of high-quality administrative services in comfortable conditions close to home. 11 out of 490 ASCs will be mobile.

During the Conference, the Memoranda of Understanding Ceremony took place with 134 partner hromadas of Programme’s third round and the high-level speakers from Ukrainian Government and the Delegation of the European Union to Ukraine.

Denys Schmygal, Vice Prime Minister, Minister for Hromadas and Territories Development of Ukraine congratulated the leaders of hromadas: “One of the Government’s priorities is the delivery of quality administrative services to every resident. With the U-LEAD with Europe Programme’s support, 2.5 million Ukrainians can already receive administrative services in comfortable conditions. Also, with the Programme’s support seven mobile ASCs have been launched, providing 450,000 residents with access to quality services close to home”.

Liudmyla Rabchynska, Deputy Minister of Digital Transformation of Ukraine addressed the hromadas during the Ceremony: “Our goal is to change the attitude of Ukrainians to the state and the quality of services it provides. We must convince society that the state can be comfortable, invisible and human-oriented. Therefore, by the end of 2020, we plan to completely change the interaction between people and the state”.

Frederik Coene, First Counsellor, Delegation of the European Union to Ukraine, also congratulated the hromadas on behalf of the European Union. Mr. Coene took part in the Memoranda Awarding Ceremony and highlighted: “The European Union comprehensively supports Ukraine in implementing decentralization reform, strengthening the hromadas’ capabilities in various areas of governance. It is a key reform, which empowers hromadas and brings direct benefits to the everyday life of Ukrainians. Well-functioning Administrative Service Centre improves the lives of residents by bringing authorities closer to the people and making the system transparent, accessible, inclusive and service-oriented. It strengthens governance and accountability at local level”.

The conference was attended by Thomas Pålsson, Director General of Sweden’s National Government Service Centre and Paul Larsson, Division Head of Sweden’s National Government Service Centre. The speakers shared Sweden's experience in creating a high-quality system of administrative services, both in terms of the state approach to regulation, and in terms of the operational work of the Swedish ASCs. They also talked on the role of local governments in providing quality services to the residents. To remind, U-LEAD with Europe Programme’s Support to Improved Administrative Service Delivery is governed by the Swedish Agency for International Cooperation and Development Sida.

The U-LEAD support to hromadas for the ASC establishment is complex and comprehensive. It includes institutional support, physical support, training course for ASC employees, and support with citizen awareness and engagement.

As of mid-February, 144 well-functioning ASCs have already started operating in 24 regions of Ukraine. All Centres established with U-LEAD’s support provide the most popular administrative services, they are accessible to people with disabilities and have a children's corner.

"The results presented today would not have been possible without the great desire and commitment of our partners - the amalgamated hromadas across Ukraine. For us, the U-LEAD team, for our donors - the European Union and the Member States of Denmark, Estonia, Germany, Poland and Sweden - it is a great honor to be a part of this history, but hromadas, and only hromadas, are the true creators of it," summed up Susanna Dellans, U-LEAD with Europe Sida Programme Director.

In the frame of the conference five workshops on topics that affect the effective work of the ASC and its sustainable development were conducted: institutional challenges, corruption risks, energy efficiency of the ASC building, gender mainstreaming in service provision, citizen awareness and engagement in ASC work.

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