What Arseniy Yatsenyuk Cost the Ukrainian People

The Ukrainian media has calculated how much Arseniy Yatsenyuk really cost the country - and, boy, was he expensive!

Tue, Apr 19, 2016
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$60 billion sound fair to you?

112 , the Ukraine TV-Channel,  estimated the losses under ex-Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk at $60 billion. 

GDP

From $183 billion and growing by about 4% in 2013, in 2014 the State Statistics Service counted only $132 billion, a drop of 28%. In 2015, the main economic indicators decreased by another 10%. According to current estimates, real indicators dropped by almost twice over these two years and are estimated at about $80 billion.

Currency rate

On the first day of his appointment as Prime Minister (February 27th, 2014), the hryvna’s rate to the dollar was 9.5. By April it was 11, and by the time of his second appointment (November 27th, 2014) it was 15, gradually reaching today’s 26 hryvna/dollar. The joint ‘achievement’ of the government and the National Bank is an almost threefold devaluation. 

Inflation

Prices rose over the last two years at the same record-breaking speed as the national currency and production dropped. From almost zero in 2013, in 2014 prices rose by 25%, then another 43% in 2015. 

Debts

The aggregate index of the national debt since 2013 (direct and state guaranteed debts - editor's note), have decreased from $73 to $65 billion. It’s hard to call this decrease an achievement because it was not due to the government’s refusal to  ‘live on credit’ but the impossibility of taking out new loans (Part of the debt was denominated in hryvna and correspondingly devalued in relation to dollar .– author’s note). At the same time, we still have to pay off the old debts. Today the aggregated national debt index amounts to 80% of GDP. 

Tariffs

Electricity rates after the preceding increases are expected to almost double by 2017 from the current 47 kopecks, to 90 kopecks per kilowatt-hour at the most economical mode of consumption. The tariffs for gas and heating are set to grow at least one and a half times. Gas has risen from a minimum of 1.2 hryvna per cubic meter in May 2014 to 7.2 hryvna in two years. Heating rates increased several times. Back in 2014, Ukrainians paid 8-9 hryvna instead of the 2-3 hryvna per square meter of housing which had been the average across the country. And by May 2015, prices jumped to 15-16 hryvna. Water tariffs also significantly increased although not as much. During 2015, the cost of hot water rose on average by 60%. Against this background, the rise in the price of water by 10-20% depending on the region to an average of 6 hryvna per cubic meter was not so impressive. Average total bills for a standard 2-bedroom apartment rose from an average 300 hryvna per month to 1000 and more. 

Gas

The Ukraine’s switch to European gas shipped through Slovakia instead of from Gazprom directly, allowed it to significantly lower gas prices for the Ukraine. In the winter of 2014-2015 Gazprom set a price of $329 per thousand cubic meters, today it proposes $185, about the same as charged by  Europeans.l However, since last fall no gas was delivered directly from Russia to the Ukraine. 

Trade

In 2014, Ukrainian exports decreased by 14% to $53 billion, continuing a tendency begun a year before. In 2013 exports decreased by 9% compared to 2012. But the real crash happened in 2015: Ukraine delivered 30% less goods to foreign markets than in its most successful year of 2014, for a total of $38 billion.

Trade with the EU countries decreased significantly, but in the case of the CIS countries, it was more than 50 % in 2015. As for the European Union the drop was limited to 25 % for a volume of supplies of $13 billion. As before, Ukrainian mainly exports metallurgy (46 % of the total) and agriculture - 40 %.   

Salaries

According to the SSC, in 2015 the number of unemployed across the country amounted to less than half a million people, or about 3% of able-bodied citizens. However, using the methodology of the International Labor Organization, the unemployment rate rose sharply to 10%. As a result, there are over 1.6 million unemployed for 16.5 million able-bodied citizens, the loss of the Crimea and the territories in the east of the country accounting for 3 million. 

In 2014, the average salary increased from 3,300 to 3,500 hryvna and in 2015 to 4,200 hryvna. Adjusted for inflation and other indicators, any real salary growth ceased in 2013. In 2014, the real salary of the average Ukrainian was almost 10% less than the previous year and in 2015 it fell by another 20%.

What an achievement!

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