2014: Ukraine’s year in numbers
Three top events – the Revolution of Dignity, Russia’s annexation of Crimea and a de-facto war in the east of Ukraine, fomented by the Kremlin, were of critical importance in the passing year and are presented here in a set of numbers.
0 top officials from the regime of Ukraine’s fugitive former president, Viktor Yanukovch, were prosecuted for crimes committed with their agreement or on their orders against protesters of the Euro Maidan. According to Ukraine’s Ministry of Interior, all crimes against the protesters are being investigated separately.
1 snap presidential election (in May) and 1 snap parliamentary election (in October) were held in Ukraine. Petro Poroshenko became Ukraine’s president, winning in the first round of voting with the 54.7 percent of the vote. Six political parties gained seats in parliament despite the fact that elections to Verkhovna Rada (Ukraine’s parliament) of the 8th convocation were not held in 12 constituencies of Crimea due to its annexation, and in nine constituencies in Donetsk region and six constituencies in Luhansk region due to military activity. For the first time in the history of independent Ukraine, the communists, the parliament’s old-timers, failed to win seats in parliament, as did the last convocation’s freshmen – the right-wing Svoboda party. Besides, the snap parliamentary election saw the lowest ever voter turnout –at 52.42 percent.
1 ex-serviceman from the special forces unit Berkut of the Kyiv’s main directorate of the Ministry of Interior, Dmitriy Sadovnik, suspected of shooting 39 protesters (some of the so-called Heavenly Hundred protesters of the Maidan who were killed during clashes in the capital’s center), escaped from house-arrest and is still at large.
2 pseudoreferendums were held in Ukraine. The first one took place on March 16 in Crimea. It was not recognized by the world community, yet allowed Russia to annex the Ukrainian peninsula. The other pseudoreferendum in the Donetsk and the Luhansk on May 11 was used by local separatists to ask Russia’s permission for the illegally self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic and Luhansk People’s Republic to become part of the Russian Federation. This pseudoreferendum was not recognized by the rest of the world either. At the same time, 2.5 million residents of the Donetsk and Luhansk regions (from Debaltsevo, Yenakiyevo, Yasinovata, Avdeyevka, Volnovakha, Novoazovsk, Alchevsk, Stakhanov, Bryanka, Severodonetsk, Rubezhnoye, Kremennaya, Starobelsk, Svatovo, etc) expressed their will to become part of the Dnipropetrovsk region instead of staying within self-proclaimed formations.
3 foreign nationals – Aleksandr Kvitashvili (Georgia), Aivaras Abromavicius (Lithuania), Nataliya Yaresko (USA) – were granted Ukrainian citizenship, becoming the first ever foreigners in Ukraine’s government. They were appointed heads of the Health Ministry, the Ministry of Economic Development and Trade, and the Ministry of finance respectively. Besides, former Georgian police official Eka Zguladze was appointed the first deputy interior minister.
5 ex-members of the Party of Regions (party of the ex-president Yanukovych), including those who managed to be reelected to parliament, thus enjoying exclusive immunity status (Nestor Shufrich, Yuriy Miroshnichenko, Sergey Kivalov), and two more who were stripped of these privileges (Vladimir Makeyenko and Anna Herman) were summoned at the end of December to the Office of the Prosecutor General (GPO) with regard to their voting on January 16 in favor of the so-called “dictator’s laws”. Also in December, the GPO put on the wanted list Igor Kaletnik, a member of the Communist party, and ex-member of the Party of Regions Vladimir Oliynyk who rigged the results of the said voting on January 16.
7 ex-top officials, including former President Viktor Yanukovych, former Interior Minister Vitaliy Zakharchenko, and former Prosecutor General Viktor Pshonka have not yet been put on the international wanted list. Interpol does not pursue with this move as it finds the charges to be politically motivated.
7% fall of Ukraine’s GDP as of the end of 2014 - the continuation of negative indicators in 2015 with an expected GDP decline of 3% is forecast by Standard & Poor's International rating agency. At the same time, economic growth of 1.5% is possible as soon as in 2016, and 2.5% in 2017, according to experts.
9 months, since April, 2014, is how long the Anti-terrorist operation (ATO) in the country’s east has lasted. On April 13, the National Security and Defense Council of Ukraine decided to start a full-scale anti-terrorist operation involving Ukraine’s Military Forces after seizures of state administration building, local police departments, and buildings of the regional units of the State Security Service by Russian-backed armed activists became more frequent.
16% of Donbas residents would like to “call it quits” with Ukraine, according to the poll by Kyiv International Institute for Sociology. At the same time, only 7.3% of the rest of Ukrainians would say good-bye to this region, while 1.8% believe Ukraine will be better off without the Donbas. However, more than half of Ukrainians – 54.3% – are absolutely against giving up the country’s eastern regions.
UAH 17 to the dollar – this is the government-proposed exchange rate set in the 2015 state budget, despite the fact that the national currency has been quite feverish, and the rate has been varying greatly. Nevertheless, the Cabinet officials note that the draft budget forecast indices were formed based on a number of consensus-prognoses of investment banks and the Ministry of Economic Development and Trade.
20% of Ukraine’s population took part in protests against the country’s former administration at the end of 2013 and the beginning of 2014, as estimated by the Ilko Kucheriv Democratic Initiatives Fund and the Kyiv International Institute for Sociology.
30 Ukrainians, at the least, have been illegally detained by Russian special services on Ukrainian soil and transported to Russia. Among them is the Ukrainian military airwoman Nadia Savchenko, an elected member of parliament, who is accused of complicity in the murder of two Russian reporters; and also the film director Oleg Sentsov, along with activists Aleksandr Kolchenko and Aleksei Chirniy, who are accused of terrorism.
43% of Ukraine support Ukraine becoming a member of the European Union in the next five years, according to the survey by DW-Trend, conducted for Deutsche Welle by the Kyiv division of the Institute for Public Opinion Research IFAK. Another 15% of Ukrainians support Ukraine joining the EU in five-ten years. In general, three-fourths of the country’s population supports the European Integration of Ukraine – or 73%.
98 participants of the Maidan – the so-called Heavenly Hundred – were killed during protests in the capital’s center in late February. They now symbolize Ukraine’s fight for freedom.
298 passengers of a MH17 Boeing-777 Malaysian Airlines flight on route from Amsterdam to Kuala-Lumpur were killed when the jet was shot from the sky over Donetsk region, most probably by a Buk anti-aircraft missile. Most of the passengers who died in the attack were Dutch citizens. An international investigation is still being conducted. The chief suspects in the atrocity are the Russian-backed militants in the east of the country.
490 people, including soldiers and officers of Ukraine’s Military Forces, volunteer battalions, and Ministry of the Interior, are being held captive by insurgents in eastern Ukraine, according to the center for release of the war prisoners.
917 Ukrainian military servicemen have been killed and another 3,218 – wounded in the area of the ATO, the Ministry of Defense reports. According to the United Nations Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights and the World Health Organization, 4,707 people have been killed and 10,322 – wounded in Ukraine’s east.
1,667 troops from Ukraine’s Military Forces have gone missing since the beginning of the ATO, according to parliament’s committee for health.
UAH 5,023 is the average amount of debt on wages, distributed among all employed citizens, according to the State statistics service. The debt has increased by 214.3% since the beginning of 2014. At the same time, the debts of the commercially active enterprises constitute 78.3% of the total amount of debt, and the debts of the bankrupt companies – 20.1%. Region-wise, the largest amounts of debt have accumulated in the Donetsk region (UAH 1.056 billion), Kyiv region (UAH 124.3 million) and Kharkiv region (UAH 123.8 million), and the smallest amounts in Chernivtsi region (UAH 3.8 million) and Zakarpattya region (UAH 4.1 million). The data does not include the temporarily-occupied territory of the Autonomous Republic of Crimea and the city of Sevastopol.
7,721 Ukrainian troops could claim the status of combat veterans, but as of the end of this year only 6,100 fighters of the ATO have been granted this status. To date, the interdepartmental commission that deals with the issue has sent 154 cases back for revision, while in 17 claims for the status of a combat veteran were denied.
15,000 new state standards are to be implemented by 2016. At the same time, according to Ukraine’s prime minister, Ukraine will completely abolish old Soviet standards.
40,000 Ukrainian citizens are to be drafted as conscripts by the Ministry of Defense in 2015. Another 10,500 citizens may be drafted for contract military service. In general, it is expected that the mobilization will be executed in three stages – from January to August.
131,300 is the estimated number of Ukraine’s population decline in 2014, according to the State Statistics Service. The service estimates that the state’s population of 42,941,800 as of January 1, 2015. The number as of January 1, 2014 was 43,073,100.
614,647 internally displaced people have moved from the temporarily-occupied Crimean territory and areas of the anti-terrorist operation to other regions of Ukraine, according to the Inter-departmental coordination headquarters of social services for this category of citizens. Most internal migrants have settled in Kharkiv, Donetsk, Zaporizhya, and Kyiv regions, and also in the country’s capital. The least numbers are observed in Chernivtsi, Ternopil, Volyn and Ivano-Frankivsk regions.
UAH 95 million is spent daily in Ukraine for supporting the army / Photo UNIAN
UAH 95 million is spent daily for supporting the army in its military activities in eastern Ukraine, according to the Cabinet of Ministers. It is believed in the government that security expenses are one of the key challenges for the country’s economy and the country as a whole.
$200 million is Ukraine’s monthly cost for supplying natural gas and electricity to the insurgent-held areas of the Donbas, according to Ukraine’s prime minister.
UAH 1.038 trillion is the total amount of Ukraine’s public and publicly guaranteed debt, according to the Ministry of Finance. At the same time, the ministry reports that the amount of the national debt is growing due to the national currency’s devaluation. In general, a trend for a reduction in the public debt (in foreign currency) prevails.
UAH 1.08 trillion is the estimated cost of damage to Ukraine caused by Russia’s annexation of Crimea, according to the Ministry of Justice. The damage in the east of Ukraine has not yet been assessed.