The draft national budget of Ukraine for 2020 provides for the allocation of UAH 245 billion for national security and defense, which makes up 5.4% of the gross domestic product of Ukraine, Minister of Finance Oksana Markarova has said. “In our spending, we focus on national security and defense. In this budget, UAH 245 billion is allocated for national security and defense. This is 5.4% of GDP. Expenses are allocated based on 2019 expenditures,” Markarova said, presenting the draft national budget in the session hall of the Verkhovna Rada.
“Please note that there appeared a separate budget program, in which additional funds are foreseen for the National Security and Defense Council, which will be distributed by second reading,” she added.
The draft national budget for 2020 foresees UAH 245.8 billion for national security and defense, including UAH 207.8 billion in expenses under the budget programs of the Ministry of Defense, UAH 10 billion in state guarantees, UAH 28 billion in additional expenses from the general fund according to the budget program of the National Security and Defense Council (NSDC) “Unallocated expenses on national security and defense,” which will be distributed separately by the decision of the NSDC.
The Cabinet of Ministers has approved a draft agreement on the European Union’s providing technical assistance to Ukraine in the amount EUR 54 million to finance the EE4U-II energy efficiency support program, and also approved draft agreements on two other programs. According to the Ministry of Economic Development and Trade, the Cabinet of Ministers also approved a draft agreement on financing the “Program of Expanding Contacts between People: the House of Europe” between Ukraine and the European Commission with a budget of EUR18 million for eight years.
The aim of the program is to attract technical assistance from the EU to establish contacts, professional relations, cultural exchange between citizens of the EU and Ukraine.
In particular, the matter concerns organizing short-term professional internships in EU countries, supporting the House of Europe information center, expanding opportunities for Ukraine to participate in the Erasmus+ program.
In addition, the program assumes reimbursement of half the amount of Ukraine’s contributions to the Creative Europe program for 2018-2020.
In addition, the government approved a draft agreement on financing the technical cooperation program for 2018 with the budget of EUR 37 million to support the implementation of the Association Agreement on the deep and comprehensive free trade area, the Ministry of Economic Development and Trade reports.
Ukrainian Prime Minister Volodymyr Groysman has said he expects the Verkhovna Rada to adopt the country’s draft state budget for 2019 at first reading during the current plenary week from October 16 to 19. “This week we are expecting budget conclusions and the first reading of the draft state budget for 2019. People’s deputies have already submitted more than 2,000 proposals,” Groysman wrote on his Facebook page.
Ukrainian Energy and Coal Industry Minister Ihor Nasalik has said that the Cabinet of Ministers will consider the draft state budget for 2019 at a meeting on September 14. “We will adopt[the draft state budget for 2019 at a meeting of the Cabinet of Ministers tentatively on Friday,” he told reporters after a government meeting in Kyiv on Wednesday.
Earlier, Prime Minister Volodymyr Groysman said that the Cabinet of Ministers would submit the draft state budget for 2019 to the Verkhovna Rada on time, before September 15.