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You're reading: People First: The latest in the watch on Ukrainian democracy

The government of Ukraine has decided initiate policy aimed at increasing the social security of the people. Half a year before the parliamentary elections, President Viktor Yanukovych has voiced new plans for increasing living standards. These include: paying out Hr 1,000 ($125) to six million Ukrainians in compensation for their lost USSR Sberbank deposits; increasing insurance compensations to physically challenged miners (by Hr 500 – $62); and an incremental rise in general pensions starting from this April. Experts report that in order to implement the president’s new initiatives the government will need to find somewhere between 16 billion ($2 billion) and 25 billion $3.1 billion.

The majority of experts believe that the new social initiatives are pure populism – considering that there has been no information on how they will be financed.
The only suggestion that members of the government have expressed in relation to new sources of finance for the president’s initiatives has been to increase taxes.

For example, the proposed introduction of a wealth tax it is planned to collect around Hr 3 billion ($375 million).

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