Reforms Digest October 10-16. International support and domestic transparency

Reforms Digest October 10-16. International support and domestic transparency
October 16, 2015.

Macrofinancial stabilization

Next stage of Ukraines external debt restructuring

On October 14, Ukraine secured the required majority of bondholder votes to restructure $14.4bn of sovereign Eurobonds, with more than 75% of holders in each of the series supporting the Ukrainian government to restructure. As a next step, owners of Eurobonds worth USD 3 billion are to meet in London on October 29.

Restructuring external debt allows to decrease the burden on the state budget. According to Ukraine’s Ministry of Finance, in case the debts are restructured, the total amount of state debt will decrease by approximately USD 3 billion, while USD 8.5 billion will be saved on its servicing.

Support by international financial institutions

The Board of Directors of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development adopted a decision to support projects for public transportation development (EUR 100 million) and for modernization of “Ukrgidroenergo”(EUR 180 million).

Law enforcement reform

The Ministry of Interior announced establishing a new unit –cyber police. Candidateapplications are accepted from October 15 until October 25. Over 3,000 applications were submitted on the first day to fill 187 inspector positions and 39 “special agents”.

State property management and energy

The government approved a plan to reform corporate governance of Naftogaz, the state energy company. The decision paves the way for transparent and effective management of the biggest state-owned company.

Deregulation

Business received simplified access to the technical standards that are currently in force in Ukraine. The Ministry for Economic Development and Trade of Ukraine has launched a web site providing information on national and international standards, the service is available on a paid basis. Relevant documents are currently being transferred into electronic format, but there is already access to the most important standards (9,000of the 30,000 which apply in Ukraine).

Advantages to business are quick and transparent access to required legislative documents on standardization, while the state gets a financial boost by eliminating intermediaries.

Openness of authorities

Web-based platform e-dem.in.ua was released earlier this month to provide an opportunity to organise submission of petitions to local councils.Thirteen Ukrainian cities have committed themselves to joining the system by the end of this month.

The authorities are obliged to introduce an electronic petition mechanism in accordance with the Law of Ukraine On citizensappeals. This appeals format is one of the e-democracy instruments operational in over 70 countries. It enables society to publicly question officials and requires them to publicly respond. Over 11,000 e-petitions have been registered on the web site of the President of Ukraine over the one and a half months since the format was introduced.

Anticorruption reform

In the first week since the registries of land plot owners were opened, inquiries concerning the owners of over 80,000 sites have been submitted. The largest number of inquiries pertained to land plots in Kyiv region.

Open access to assets registries is one of the most efficient instruments in combatting corruption. It allows the public and journalists to effectively monitor civil servants assets.

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