The Co-Chairman of the OPPOSITION BLOC faction in the parliament, Oleksandr Vilkul, said that the colossal salary arrears, including in the industrial sector, where workers were not received more than UAH 2 billion, was the result of an illiterate de-industrialization policy, which had been systematically held by the authorities for the fifth year already. “Salary arrears are approaching a record level of the decade. Since the beginning of the year, it has increased by almost 10% and is UAH 2 billion 561 million. People do not get even what they earned with hard work! And the authorities cannot feed children by their statements on victories. That is why already 8 million people have left for searching work abroad,” he said during his speech from the rostrum of the Verkhovna Rada.
According to the State Statistics Service, salary arrears as of June 1, 2018 amounted to UAH 2.561 billion. The non-payment of economically active enterprises to employees is growing at a faster rate than in the economy as a whole, and only in 2018 it grew by 10.9%.
Oleksandr Vilkul drew attention to the consequences of the so-called “reform” of health care. “Only this year, arrears in salaries in the field of medicine and the provision of social assistance increased by more than 60%,” he said.
The opposition believes that huge salary arrears are one of the reasons why people do not pay for municipal services. “Do they want to increase the tariffs? But, people who do not receive salaries cannot pay even according to the existing tariffs,” the MP said.
The arrears on utility payments have already exceeded UAH 40 billion. In this regard, Oleksandr Vilkul stated about the real threat of a breakdown of the heating season. “The arrears on utility payments caused an increase of salary arrears to workers of the heat and power sector in 1.5 times for this half a year - specialists are being massively dismissed and are also leaving the country. We are facing a real threat of a breakdown of the heating season, because nobody will set up the system and then repair it,” the opposition leader said.
“The authorities have lost touch with reality – they are issuing premiums of more than UAH 1-1.2 billion to several officials of Naftogaz. This is more than the salary arrears for thousands of miners - UAH 1.1 billion. To repay the salary arrears to miners, we require the adoption of the draft law No 8362. But the coalition blocks and does not want to do it. The only way not only to repay the salary arrears, but also to provide people with decent wages is to support industry, open new industries, attract investment, and revise international treaties so that our producers have the opportunity to increase sales in foreign markets. And it can be done, it is necessary to have a wish to work!” Oleksandr Vilkul stressed.
The Co-Chairman of the OPPOSITION BLOC faction in the parliament consistently demands from the leadership of the Verkhovna Rada to put to the vote issues that millions of Ukrainians are waiting for - restoring peace, supporting industry to provide people with work places, and real, and not inflationary growth of salaries and pensions, when a tiny increase is eaten up by prices and tariffs. Oleksandr Vilkul together with his colleagues from the OPPOSITION BLOC submitted to parliament a corresponding package of draft laws within the framework of the strategy “New Industrialization”, but the authorities block their adoption.