Ukrainian Government’s Austerity Action Plan

By Dmytro Dyenkov, EP, March 11, 2014

The Cabinet is ready to adopt unpopular austerity measures. This obviously will not include doubling gas tariffs for the population, but outrage probably is unavoidable. A limit on pension payments to working pensioners is envisioned as early as March.

In the beginning of March, the government planned to revise the state budget in order to save 65-80 billion UAH. Last week the sources of the savings were reported. In particular, personnel has already been reduced in some of the state institutions. The National Bank dismissed “investigators,” guards, and some staff that had been hired at the Bank during the Serhiy Arbuzov administration. Continue reading

USA persuaded Japan and China to side with Ukraine

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To each of these countries, Obama promised what they wanted to hear

The U.S. Embassy in Ukraine has published information about the content of phone conversations between President of the U.S. Barack Obama and the leaders of Japan and China on the situation in Ukraine. In particular, the conversation of Obama with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on March 7 says: “The two leaders agreed that Russia’s actions are a threat to international peace and security, and emphasised the importance of maintaining the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine. They agreed to work with other partners in G-7 and insist on Russia complying with its commitments and promises regarding Ukraine’s sovereignty, including those in accordance with the UN Charter and the Agreement on stationing since 1997. They indicated that Russia has an opportunity to resolve the situation by diplomatic means so that it is in the interests of Russia, Ukraine, and the international community. Both leaders have also agreed to work on a bilateral basis through the International Monetary Fund to support the Government of Ukraine in stabilising its economy and preparing for the elections in May. The President noted that his visit to Japan in April will be an important event that will contribute to many diplomatic, defence, and commercial initiatives that promote the United States and Japan in Asia and around the world.” Thus, Japan may count on the U.S. support in the diplomatic, defence and trade initiatives. Continue reading