Foreword by the Prime Minister
"To build a successful European state – this is the chance we have got thanks to the Revolution of Dignity, and we have no right to waste it.
Indeed, we have begun a major transformation of the state aiming to ensure economic growth, provide effective governance, facilitate human capital development, implement the rule of law and fight corruption as well guarantee the state security and enhance its defense power. These objectives were specificaly set out in the Government’s Medium-Term Priority Action Plan to 2020, adopted last year.
The key achievements of the Government in 2017 were maintaining macroeconomic stability, ensuring further economic growth and pursuing systemic and institutional reforms, including those neglected over the entire period of Ukraine’s independence.
Specifically, the Government has launched pension, education and healthcare reforms, prepared the ground for transparent privatization practices and efficient management of state-owned enterprises. Besides, the Government has started preparing the land reform.
To overcome the institutional weakness of the Ukrainian state, which still remains one of its biggest problems, we have particularly focused on public administration reform. At the same time, we continued the decentralization reform, which the Government had commenced earlier.
Besides, the Government was consistently implementing its part of anticorruption activities, creating favorable conditions for the work of anticorruption bodies and, together with civil society, was monitoring corruption risks in central executive bodies to narrow the potential sources of institutional corruption. This has put an end to abuses in the system of VAT reimbursement, while custom revenues increased significantly due to fight against smuggling. By initiating new legislation, the Government is trying to protect business against abuses coming from law-enforcement bodies.
The Government’s efforts have led to general improvement of the business and investment climate in Ukraine, which has been noted by entrepreneurs. Hense capital investments in Ukraine grew by 19.9% over the first three quarters of 2017. Privatization of the state-owned enterprises and reform of their management will be among the top priorities of our Government. The privatization of such big enterprises as Centrenergo, Turboatom, Odessa Port Plant, Ukrgazbank is planned for early 2018.
The Government stays firm and consistent in its policy aimed at deepening relations with the European Union. After the final approval of the Association Agreement, its implementation became one of the Government’s top priorities. The EU is becoming Ukraine’s main economic partner: the share of the EU member-states in Ukraine’s foreign trade in goods has reached 41.3% of the total trade volume. In 2017 more than 14 thousand Ukrainian companies exported to the EU.
At the same time, we do understand that we cannot afford to be satisfied – the country needs to increase its economic growth, step up its major transformations, continue profound modernization of infrastructure, and provide real changes in healthcare and education.
Thus, we have identified the following priorities for 2018: privatization and efficient management of state-owned enterprises, improvement of the business climate, modernization of infrastructure, energy sector reform, preparations for land reform and support of farming, innovations development, further fight against corruption, strengthening the rule of law as well as pursuing current reforms.
I am convinced that the Government’s comprehensive and responsible approach towards these priorities, our joint efforts to keep political consensus with constructive forces for the sake of much-needed reforms, as well as support of our international partners will ensure continued economic growth and progress in 2018. We are particularly aware of how responsible our mission is, and we will keep proving our political will to achieve the well-being of the Ukrainian people."
Prime Minister of Ukraine