Medium-term planning, both at central budget and local levels, should become a new priority and the basis for a new stage of the decentralisation reform in Ukraine, said Prime Minister of Ukraine Volodymyr Groysman during the expanded governmental meeting on "Decentralisation and regional development".
The Head of Government reminded that the decentralisation reform started in April 2014. And then there were few people, who understood the goals of the reform. However, changes have begun. The Head of Government is convinced that if Donetsk, Luhansk and Crimea had the present possibilities of decentralisation, then the situation in the country would be different.
"If the currently occupied Donetsk, Crimea and Luhansk had opportunities, they would flourish, they would have the resources to give a new quality of life to citizens," said Volodymyr Groysman. “At the same time, today we do not have to boast of what we have already received. Today we have to sum up and outline the tasks for a new period. And here the issue of medium-term planning should become a priority – both in budgetary policy and in the policy of regional development."
The Head of Government stressed that local budget revenues grew by over UAH 100 billion due to decentralisation. In addition, the state supports the regions by directing UAH 30 billion to the ground under different programmes. But since the key task is to develop the economy, it is necessary to discuss the ways to increase these revenues. "The sum of UAH 100 billion should be increased to UAH 200 billion, and this resource should be directed to create new jobs, raise the living standards of citizens. And here the salary, pension, outpatient clinic we visit and the school our children go to are of equal importance. This is our task," said Volodymyr Groysman.
He stressed that the new standards include an upgrade of the educational system, healthcare, infrastructure, overcoming the infrastructure and digital division in Ukraine. "It is high time to define exact priorities and improve the quality of life of the citizens," the Head of Government added. “It's easy to come out and say that this or that reform is bad, and it is very difficult to take responsibility and make changes."
The Prime Minister stressed that it is time to form the state development strategy and the main directions of work are specified by the Government. "We will invest in education, healthcare, youth and children," said Volodymyr Groysman. “You can take the resource and spend it on populist goals, but this is not our way. We need to continue to do our work, evaluated further by the Ukrainian citizens."
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