The increased budget will allow the army to have better nutrition and afford some equipment.
Kyiv, October 4, 2016. The draft budget for 2017 provides UAH 64 billion for the Defense Ministry. It is almost 2.5% of GDP. This was stated by Lt. Col. Oleksiy Chernobay, Ministry of Defense of Ukraine spokesperson, at a briefing held at Ukraine Crisis Media Center. “This is almost UAH 12 billion, or 23%, more than in 2016,” he added. In addition, the state budget for the next year is expected to provide the Ministry of Defense with state guarantees in the amount of UAH 4 billion. “It is planned to allocate about UAH 11.5 billion from a new defense budget to develop armament and military equipment and about 3 billion – to train the Armed Forces,” noted the spokesperson.
According to him, there are still some issues to solve. These are recovery and stockpiling of fuel and lubricants, material property, food, missiles and ammunition, recovery of the Navy potential, recovery and developing of an airfield network of the Armed Forces of Ukraine and proving grounds to train servicemen and repair weapons and equipment, changes in training the army by NATO standards, construction and reconstruction of the military units infrastructure. “The solution to these and other issues was laid in the budget request of the Ministry of Defense of Ukraine for 2017, which amounted to UAH 108 billion,” explained Lt. Col. Chernobay.
He reported that over 53,000 military had signed a contract with the Armed Forces since the beginning of the year, of which more than 6,000 are officers. Thus, as of today, there are more than 109,000 servicemen of sergeants and privates rank and 47,500 officers. At the same time, mobilized servicemen have an opportunity to contract with the Armed Forces without quitting the service. “They are paid the following honoraria: UAH 14,500 to officers; UAH 13,000 to sergeant; UAH 11,600 to soldiers. They remain employed and receive the average salaries. Besides, pension payments continue. These privileges remain until completion of the “special period” and announcement of the general demobilization,” informed the MoD spokesperson.
Lt. Oleksiy Chernobay informed that on October 3, the government approved the proposed changes to the food standards for servicemen. This will allow purchasing the combat ration of the new type. These innovations do not require any additional funding from the state budget, because this year the funds from the budget have been redistributed for purchasing the new combat rations. Besides, the new expenditure item has been provided for and included into the proposals for Budget-2017. “First of all, these food standards and specifications have been developed to improve the quality of nutrition of servicemen who are in the ATO zone and are not able to cook warm food in the field.
So, this resolution introduces food standard №15 – a daily field set of products of 3,500 calories, which is an improved alternative to the existing combat ration. In addition, the document provides for the high-calorie ration for the soldiers fighting in the East Ukraine. Its caloric content has been increased up to 600 calories,” notes the spokesperson. According to him, the innovation also includes the ration enrichment with dried fruits, chocolate, coffee, delicious first and second courses. For the first time a retort pouch and flameless food heater are used.