Ukraine

President in Zhytomyr: Concrete results of decentralization are our response to critics

During a meeting of the Zhytomyr Regional Development Council, President Petro Poroshenko assured that he would continue the decentralization program initiated in 2014.

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During a meeting of the Zhytomyr Regional Development Council, President Petro Poroshenko assured that he would continue the decentralization program initiated in 2014.

The Head of State thanked the citizens for supporting decentralization, which involves the transfer of rights, powers, money and responsibility to the territorial communities. “Power, authority, money and responsibility. Because responsibility without resources is a deception. Therefore, along with responsibility, we transferred financial resources to the local authorities. It’s honest and fair. Now in the consolidated state budget, the share of the state budget is 49%. This is the first time in Ukraine. 49% goes for everything else – for foreign policy, for the army, for any other expenses. And 51%, taking into account subsidies and subventions, goes to the local budget,” the Head of State stressed.

“What does this mean for the communities? We have once and for all abandoned the position, when only Kyiv knows what the territorial community needs. We do not dictate which project the community should spend money on or how much funds should be spent. Until recently, I want to remind everyone of you, that was exactly the case,” he added. According to him, in 2013, the funds of the state budget directed to support local budgets amounted to UAH 500 million, and in 2018, this figure equals 33.5 billion. “The state support of the communities has increased 67 times,” he said.

During the regional visits the President sees that communities are now able to make decisions themselves, resolve topical issues and bear responsibility for them. “Communities finally see the perspective, create development strategies. And these strategic issues and directions are not pulled out of a hat, they are formed in a lively discussion, in a dialogue where every citizen and member of the community have the right to express his opinion. I support it. Do not be afraid to set big goals. As I do so. Achieve the impossible to get what you want,” Petro Poroshenko said. He emphasizes that the goal of decentralization is to bring power and citizen closer to each other.

“Why is decentralization so important and why am I talking about it now? What do we want to achieve with decentralization? To be brief and clear to everyone, decentralization is a country without periphery. There is no periphery, as in any European country, and the fate of each village, town, city of regional subordination is no less important than the fate of Kyiv, Lviv, Kharkiv, Odesa or Dnipro. This is a country of free, prosperous and happy people, wherever they live,” the Head of State is confident.

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