15th Congress plenary session – 27-29 May 2008
Ukraine’s new concept of State regional policy means decentralization of power and systematic reform of local self-government, says Vasyl Kuybida
[28/05/2008] “The reasons behind the disproportional development of Ukrainian regions are a lack of mechanisms for implementing the economic approach to regional policy, weak objectives of the current policy, and no components of human and political character,” underlined Vasyl Kuybida, Minister of Regional Development and Construction of Ukraine, in an exchange of views on his country’s implementation of Congress recommendations.
Ukraine is elaborating a new concept of State regional policy to turn the disproportion of local and regional development into the background for an economic breakthrough, he said, pointing out that this should be achieved through integral and balanced territorial development of Ukraine, integration of regions under single political, legal and economic conditions, rational and efficient exploitation of regional resources, and strengthening competitiveness of Ukrainian regions and communities.
According to Minister Kuybida, the new regional policy would be underpinned by packages of the reform of local self-government, administrative reform, and training for local self-government bodies’ representatives. New laws were being drafted for their implementation, namely on local self-government in Ukraine, on local State administrations, and on service for local self-government bodies.
In addition, the President of Ukraine submitted to the Parliament a draft law on the legal status of associations of local self-government bodies and their relations with State authorities.
“I consider that our Ministry would be ready to provide an effective platform for the dialogue between national associations of local self-government bodies and communities aimed at developing local and regional democracy and ensuring that Ukraine fulfils its obligations for regional development,” said Minister Kuybida. He called for the Congress’ support for the new concept of State regional policy, and expressed his hope that the Council of Europe/European Commission Joint Programme for strengthening local and regional democracy in Ukraine will be renewed.