According to MP Viktoriia Voitsitska from the Samopomich parliamentary faction, the government has been promising to reform the coal industry for years, to finally make it transparent, profitable, and to ensure workers have a decent payment for their work. However, this is not happening.
“For Ukraine, coal has become not only “black gold”, but also a “black hole”, in which billions of hryvnias of budget money disappear every year. The mines produce coal, which is then sold at a market price, state enterprises get money for this, but they are systematically and cynically withdrawn by the directors of the mines (a day or two before the salary is paid).”
Viktoriia Voitsitska notes that there is undoubtedly a problem with the systematic underfunding of state mines. But it is total corruption that is the main reason for the non-payment of wages. She believes that it is the government and the relevant ministry that can rectify the situation.
“Apparently, it is very profitable for someone to make the coal industry a tool for their own enrichment. Because so far, we see no desire of the relevant ministry to solve the problem.
In my opinion, there is an easy way out. Those state mines that are of interest to the investors, should be privatized. Those mines that have potential should be provided with equipment and financing, but under a very strict control to make sure that every single hryvnia is used for its intended purpose.
And as for those mines that have no future, we must find ways how to provide people with alternative work. We have no right to leave the miners to the mercy of fate. We must protect people and provide them with work,” concludes Victoria Voitsitska.”