KYIV, Ukraine, July 12, 2013 /PRNewswire/ --
Ukrainian officials and the Assembly of European Regions (AER) representatives agreed for the European experts to participate in forging the development strategies for Ukrainian regions, informed Oleksandr Vilkul, Vice Prime Minister of Ukraine. With nine regions of Ukraine being the Assembly members, the Eastern European country aims for the totality of its 27 regions to join the AER.
Ukraine is expecting the AER assistance in preparing the State Strategy for Regional Development until 2020. In particular, Ukraine would benefit from advice on the possible monitoring mechanisms for the Strategy implementation, as well as on the best criteria for evaluating the implementation effectiveness, stated Hande Özsan Bozatli, AER President.
Continuity with regional development programmes in Ukraine is provisioned by the Roadmap to the upcoming Eastern Partnership Summit in Vilnius in November of 2013. The 2013 EU regional development agenda for Ukraine involves two stages - alleviation of regional disparities through targeting the least developed regions of Ukraine and promoting sustainable rural development. Total project budget exceeds EUR 35 million, with the EU covering nearly 90 percent of the cost.
Existing regional development strategy in Ukraine expires in 2015. The country's government intends to adopt the 2020 Strategy within c.y. The existing draft of the 2020 Strategy highlights the need to boost competitiveness of Ukrainian regions and overcome the consequences of the 2008-2012 economic crisis. Reducing regional disproportions is one of the main goals of the future strategy as 70 percent of FDI is received by merely three regions of Ukraine - capital city of Kyiv, Dnipropetrovsk and Donetsk oblasts.
One of the tools Ukraine intends to employ in order to increase regional competitiveness is improving city infrastructure development plans to create favorable logistics conditions for local businesses. Land reform and development of agriculture is set to promote growth in rural areas. Further reduction of energy consumption by plants and factories, investment and innovation encouragement are also important tools introduced by the draft regional development strategy.
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