According to Samopomich MP Roman Semenukha, the draft state budget for 2018, which the parliament plans to adopt on Thursday, December 7, is the least quality of all estimates ever considered by the current convocation of the Verkhovna Rada.
“The 2018 budget, presented in the first reading to the Verkhovna Rada, was calculated by the Ministry of Finance on the basis of unreliable macroeconomic indicators,” explains MP Tetiana Ostrikova. “As a matter of fact, the Minister of Finance acknowledged this at a meeting of our faction on Tuesday; it turns out these were the figures approved back in May on the basis of which the budget submitted in September was calculated. Instead of verifying all the indicators and submitting correctly calculated budget, such official negligence took place.”
Thus, according to Roman Semenukha, in two weeks between the first and the second readings, the revenues from the income tax increased by 9.5 billion hryvnias, and the revenues from state and municipal enterprises – by 51%.
Generally speaking, according to Tetiana Ostrikova, between the first and second reading, 35 billion additional revenues and more than 45 billion additional expenses appeared in the budget. However, multibillion expenditures are mainly aimed at maintaining the bureaucratic apparatus and the further construction of a police state. The MP draws examples: “In particular, the amount of subsidies has grown in the budget by 16 billion. Without verification, that is, without any control on behalf of the parliament and society, there will be a direct transfer of funds from the state budget into the pockets of regional gas distribution companies, which are known to belong to the oligarchs. When asked about the process of verification of subsidies’ recipients and the verification results, the Minister of Social Policy replied: “Ask the Minister of Finance.” The latter, in turn, could not report on concrete results of this process.
Moreover, take a look at the budget for law enforcement. If in 2017, 4.6 billion hryvnias were allocated to the Prosecutor General’s Office, then in 2018 the government suggests that this funding should be increased by 45%. The Security Service’s funding is increased by 26%, the Ministry of Internal Affairs’ – by 41%, that is, almost 19 billion.”
What exactly will these funds be spent on, on which specific programs? During the meeting of the Samopomich faction, the Finance Minister replied that this figure had been given to him by the decision of the National Security and Defence Council. Tetiana Ostrikova expresses her indignation, “And this at the time when, according to the Minister of Defence, the needs of the army are only provided for in the budget by 46%.”
Looks like the Cabinet offers the parliament to blindly divide the means of taxpayers for unknowns needs and programs.
“It just can’t be so! Samopomich is against the redistribution of taxpayers’ funds for the maintenance of a bureaucratic apparatus and the construction of a police state,” concludes Tetiana Ostrikova. “We demand that the government should introduce real incentives for the revival of the economy instead of artificially increasing some indicators, in particular, the minimum wage in order to cover the holes and the deficit of the state budget.
The abolition of the income tax and the introduction of the tax on withdrawn capital could be an incentive for the development of the economy. We have heard the promise of the President of Ukraine to introduce the corresponding bill in the parliament and to adopt it in 2017. The countdown for the fulfillment of this promise has begun.”