USAID helping Ukraine build effective local government - Chernyshov.

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The United States Agency for International Development(USAID)mission is helping Ukraine build effective local government, according to Minister for Communities and Territories Development of Ukraine Oleksiy Chernyshov.

He said this during a virtual meeting with Mission Director for USAID Ukraine and Belarus James Hope, the press service of the Ministry for Communities and Territories Development reported.

According to the report, Chernyshov thanked USAID mission representatives for their assistance in achieving the main goal of decentralization reform, namely the formation of effective local self-government.

"USAID has been implementing projects in Ukraine for many years. For five years we have been working together on the reform of local self-government and territorial organization of power. In recent months, we have made significant progress in this area and we have taken important steps. The basic and district levels of the administrative-territorial structure of the country have been reformed, which became the basis for calling the first local elections on a new territorial basis," Chernyshov said.

During the virtual meeting, the parties discussed the implementation of joint projects, decentralization reform in Ukraine, regional policy priorities for 2021-2027, as well as local elections in Ukraine.

Chernyshov also noted that the Ministry for Communities and Territories Development appreciates the contribution of the USAID-funded program DOBRE(Decentralization Offering Better Results and Efficiency)and welcomes USAID's decision to extend the program for an additional 16 months, until September 2022, which will undoubtedly allow 25 more communities to improve their capabilities in various areas of activity.

Hope, in turn, emphasized the importance of the reforms being implemented by the ministry and said that decentralization reform was important not only for self-government but for the economy as a whole, as it can attract investment and create new jobs.

Regional policy issues were also discussed during the meeting. Chernyshov briefed Hope on the main areas of regional policy, in particular the state regional development strategy for 2021-2027, its tasks, differences and advantages compared to similar documents of previous years.

In August this year, the Cabinet of Ministers approved a draft resolution on the state regional development strategy for 2021-2027.

Earlier, Chernyshov said he was feeling well, despite being diagnosed with COVID-19, and decided to join Zoom meetings. On October 16, the minister tested positive for COVID-19 and went into self-isolation.

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