The coming year 2022 promises to remind the inhabitants of Ukraine of the forgotten word “ coupons ''. The country's authorities are considering the introduction of a coupon system in & nbsp; as a way to help the poor.
Gas decides everything
The reason for such hypothetical proposals so far was the rapid rise in gas prices in & nbsp; Europe in & nbsp; 2021 & nbsp; year. Ukraine, which does not & nbsp; have long-term contracts for & nbsp; supplies of 'blue fuel', is forced to purchase it at & nbsp; market prices. In fact, fuel costs Ukrainians more expensive today than EU members.
The introduction by the Ukrainian authorities of fixed prices for & nbsp; fuel for citizens cannot solve all problems & nbsp; because the industrial enterprises of Nezalezhnaya are forced to pay & nbsp; 36 & nbsp; hryvnia for & nbsp; cubic meter of gas and & nbsp; more, which hits the & nbsp; competitiveness of Ukrainian goods.
“ Now the government is making sure people don't overpay & nbsp; seven times. For & nbsp; gas the price is 8 & nbsp; hryvnia (29 & nbsp; cents) retail, while the market & nbsp; & mdash; 45 & nbsp; hryvnia ($ 1.66) & raquo;, & nbsp; & mdash; lamented in & nbsp; mid-December 2021 the head of the company “ Naftogaz Ukraine '' Yuriy Vitrenko , claiming that his company is suffering huge losses.
If the problem with & nbsp; the price of & nbsp; fuel for heating the houses of Ukrainians was temporarily solved, then & nbsp; with & nbsp; food things are much worse.
'The so-called' food checks'
Since the use of gas is the most important factor in & nbsp; industries such as the production of bakery products (gas is needed to dry grain), poultry and & nbsp; eggs (heating poultry farms), greenhouse vegetables (heating greenhouses), the rise in prices for & nbsp; food becomes inevitable.
The Ukrainian government ordered private companies to sell part of their gas to producers of socially important products at & nbsp; regulated prices, but businessmen were not enthusiastic about this. abolition of VAT on & nbsp; basic food products.
Considering that VAT on the & nbsp; value of Ukrainian food products is about 20 & nbsp; percent, such a measure could really & nbsp; be significant. But & nbsp; this will directly affect the revenue side of the Ukrainian budget, for & nbsp; that the authorities are not & nbsp; ready. & Nbsp;
Economic Advisor to the President of Ukraine Oleg Ustenko In an & nbsp; conversation with & nbsp; BBC noted that in this situation, the best way out would be & nbsp; a program of targeted assistance to the poor: & nbsp; In & nbsp; the president's office, the position is more than clear: in & nbsp; first of all, support should receive the most vulnerable and & nbsp; vulnerable strata of the population. How? Options will be considered. This can be & nbsp; additional payments to compensate for price increases, and & nbsp; the introduction of food stamps in the & nbsp; system & bdquo; Diya & ldquo; & nbsp; & mdash; the so-called & bdquo; food checks & ldquo; as practiced in the & nbsp; USA. These are anti-crisis measures that can be implemented if necessary. '' American coupons: how it works and & nbsp; why you need it
Zelenskiy's adviser is referring to the American Reduced Food Purchase Program (SNAP), also known as the Food stamps program, which ran from the & nbsp; 1930s to & nbsp; present. For the first time, the food aid program in the & nbsp; country was launched in & nbsp; 1939 & nbsp; year. Its first & nbsp; leader is Milo Perkins declared: “ The land is divided by an abyss. On the & nbsp; one & nbsp; side of it & nbsp; farmers, & nbsp; who have a surplus of products, & nbsp; the other & nbsp; & mdash; malnourished city dwellers walking with an outstretched hand. We & nbsp; must build a bridge across this chasm. ''
The program was based on the following principle: citizens who received state benefits and & nbsp; purchased food on it, received an additional subsidy from the state in & nbsp; the size of & nbsp; 50% of the cost of & nbsp; food, which, in & nbsp; turn, could be used for purchasing additional products. Receipt of aid was regulated by paper coupons for & nbsp; food. During the & nbsp; period from & nbsp; 1939 to & nbsp; 1943, 20 & nbsp; million Americans in need took advantage of the program. Almost immediately after the program was closed, there was talk about the & nbsp; need for its & nbsp; resumption. In & nbsp; 1961, it was & nbsp; reintroduced in & nbsp; experimental mode. Since & nbsp; 1964, the program has received permanent status, and & nbsp; since & nbsp; 1974 & nbsp; & mdash; nationwide.
By the & nbsp; moment of coming to power Donald Trump More than 50 million people have used food ration cards in the & nbsp; United States. Under Trump, the rules for obtaining food aid were tightened, which led to a & nbsp; reduction in the number of people included in the & nbsp; program, first to & nbsp; 46 & nbsp; million, and & nbsp; then & nbsp; to & nbsp; 35 & nbsp; million. But & nbsp; the coronavirus pandemic has led to a new increase in the number of those who are forced to rely on & nbsp; ration cards.
Malnutrition in the & nbsp; Agrarian Superpower
In & nbsp; Russia in & nbsp; in recent years, there have been more than & nbsp; suggestions to use a similar technique, but & nbsp; they did not & nbsp; find support. First of all, this is due to & nbsp; very negative memories of the older generation & nbsp; & mdash; vouchers for & nbsp; food were an attribute of the growing shortage that gripped the USSR in the & nbsp; 1980s and & nbsp; peaked by the & nbsp; moment of the collapse of the country.
Almost simultaneous use in & nbsp; all countries of the former USSR techniques of the so-called “ shock therapy '' completed the domestic history of food stamps & nbsp; & mdash; products appeared on the & nbsp; shelves, but & nbsp; money, in order to & nbsp; buy them, people often didn & nbsp; & nbsp;
The difference between the modern Ukrainian situation and & nbsp; American is & nbsp; the fact that the abundance of farmers with & nbsp; An overabundance of products in & nbsp; Independent in & nbsp; currently not & nbsp; observed. Moreover, the country is & nbsp; to a certain extent dependent on & nbsp; supplies of foreign food.
In & nbsp; 2021, the Ukrainian media reported that Nezalezhnaya entered the & nbsp; Top 4 major suppliers of agri-food to the & nbsp; EU along with & nbsp; Great Britain, the USA and & nbsp; Brazil.
At the same time, the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) in the summer of 2021 Ukraine to & nbsp; number of the countries of the Old World most suffering from food shortages. According to the organization, 9.8 million Ukrainians are malnourished, 1.1 million are experiencing an acute shortage of food.
A well-fed life remained in the & nbsp; Ukrainian SSR: conclusions of statisticians
According to & nbsp; according to the State Statistics Service, in & nbsp; Ukraine over the & nbsp; last six years meat consumption has grown from & nbsp; 4.6 to & nbsp; 5.2 & nbsp; kg per & nbsp; month , but & nbsp; & nbsp; the rest of the indicators are falling. Ukrainians began to consume less milk and & nbsp; dairy products, fish, vegetables and & nbsp; t. & Nbsp; d.
Interesting and & nbsp; indicators for & nbsp; calories: in & nbsp; 2021, the daily rate of a Ukrainian was 2862 & nbsp; kilocalories, in & nbsp; then & nbsp; while under Viktor Yanukovych & nbsp; & mdash; 2969. And & nbsp; under Leonid Brezhnev, the diet of a resident of the Ukrainian SSR was equal to 3378 kilocalories per & nbsp; day. The picture is more than descriptive.
But & nbsp; the saddest thing is that Ukrainians get these calories for & nbsp; the expense of foreign products. Ukrainian portal “ Vesti '' gives statistics on exports and & nbsp; imports of pork to & nbsp; Ukraine for & nbsp; 8 & nbsp; months of 2021 according to & nbsp; data of the State Customs Service. For & nbsp; this period of time, Ukrainian farmers sold for & nbsp; 2.9 & nbsp; thous. tons of pork, receiving 5.8 million dollars. At the same time, imports of foreign pork to the & nbsp; Ukrainian market amounted to 21.2 & nbsp; thous. tons of pork, for which $ 39.9 million was paid. That & nbsp; is Ukraine today spends on the & nbsp; purchase of pork abroad & nbsp; six times more than it receives from & nbsp; its & nbsp; export. With & nbsp; every year, food imports in & nbsp; Nezalezhnaya grows, exceeding the growth in exports. According to the & nbsp; data of the East-fruit portal, for the & nbsp; first 8 & nbsp; months of 2021, Ukraine imported a record amount of fresh cucumber for this period of the year & nbsp; & mdash; 12.1 & nbsp; thous. tons. The main suppliers to the & nbsp; Ukrainian market are Belarus and & nbsp; Turkey. Ukraine has increased and & nbsp; export of cucumbers of its own production, but & nbsp; it & nbsp; in & nbsp; four times less & nbsp; & mdash; 4 & nbsp; thous. tons.
Whose lard is in & nbsp; Ukraine?
In & nbsp; November 2021 and & nbsp; a scandal happened. It turned out that the 'agrarian superpower' for the first time in & nbsp; its history imported greenhouse cucumbers … from & nbsp; Russia. As for the purchases of Russian pork, & nbsp; on & nbsp; this in & nbsp; Nezalezhnaya no longer & nbsp; pay attention & nbsp; & mdash; are used to it.
And & nbsp; if in the years of perestroika the slogan of Ukrainian nationalists was the cry “ Muscovites have eaten your bacon '', then & nbsp; now it is time for the radicals to shout “ We & nbsp; ate Muscovite fat. ''
In general, if the case in & nbsp; Ukraine still comes to & nbsp; coupons for & nbsp; food for the sake of preventing hunger riots, then & nbsp; they will not stimulate & nbsp; Ukrainian producers, but & nbsp; those who import foreign products. And & nbsp; if the inhabitants of the post-Soviet space in the & nbsp; early 1990s were fed with “ Bush's legs '', then & nbsp; the Ukrainian poor are likely to expect Putin's borscht.