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Prices, energy, and taxes: Major economic events of 2021 (infographics)

The past 2021 was the year of the continuing general global turbulence initiated and fueled by the coronavirus pandemic. So far, the light at the end of the tunnel is not foreseeable. The Page has decided to recall what happened to the Ukrainian economy in the past year. Unfortunately, it turned out that in some areas the situation at the end of the year repeated the situation at its beginning. A lot of promises made by authorities have been successfully forgotten by it, and the changes begun were stagnated at square one.

January

From 8 to 24 January, a lockdown was in effect in Ukraine. In December, Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal stated there would be no more national lockdowns.

On January 13, spot gas prices in Europe rose by 18% in one day, breaking the then psychological mark of $300 per thousand cubic meters. At the end of the year, these prices were already skyrocketing to $2,100.

The coal reserve in the TPP warehouses was rapidly decreasing: it was 2 times lower than the norm and 2.5 times less than in the same period in 2020. In autumn, the coal deficit became even more acute.

On January 18, the Cabinet of Ministers announced imposing state regulation of gas prices for the population.

In severe frosts, Belarus began supplying electricity to Ukraine. In the fall, such supplies were resumed.

On January 28, the Verkhovna Rada again failed to appoint Yuriy Vitrenko as the Minister of Energy. The attempts of the Office of the President to accomplish this appointment did not end there.

February

The Cabinet of Ministers included electricity in the list of products that have significant social importance. The prices for such products are subject to government control. This list also includes: buckwheat, flour, eggs, a number of medications, antiseptics, medical masks, and natural gas.

On February 1, electricity imports from Russia were resumed.

On February 8, stringing of the Nord Stream 2 was resumed in Danish waters. As of the end of the year, the gas pipeline was fully technically ready for operation, but its certification had not been carried out.

The transition to electronic employment record books began. It will be completed by 2025.

The Gambling and Lotteries Regulatory Commission issued the first online casino license.

Naftogaz of Ukraine, the majority stake-holder of Ukrnafta, began negotiations on the division of the company's assets with Ihor Kolomoisky. No decision was made by the end of the year.

March

The SSU and the Office of the Prosecutor General exposed "a large-scale scheme for the shadow sale of low-quality petroleum products" at the gas stations of the Glusco chain. The chain was closed, and in the fall it changed its official owner. The authorities consider this chain to be an asset of Viktor Medvedchuk.

According to law enforcement officials, the approximate amount of tax evasion was about 240 million UAH.

NEURC fined three companies of the DTEK group for non-compliance with the norms for coal reserves in TPP warehouses. The companies got the maximum fine, 1.7 million UAH each.

On March 17, the Cabinet of Ministers dismissed Volodymyr Zhmak, the head of Ukrzaliznytsia. The contract signed with him was for three years, but he worked for less than seven months.

On March 29, ships resumed traffic on the Suez Canal that had been blocked by the container ship Ever Given for almost a week.

On March 30, the Verkhovna Rada unblocked a large privatization halted because of the coronavirus.

April

On April 5, severe quarantine restrictions were imposed in Kyiv.

On April 19, the Ministry of Economy and the Association Ukroliyaprom agreed to reduce the sunflower oil export from 5.52 million tons to 5.38 million tons in the 2020/2021 marketing year in order to stabilize the domestic sunflower oil market. Gradually, the rise in prices for this product stopped.

On April 28, the Cabinet of Ministers dismissed the Supervisory Board, fired Naftogaz CEO Andriy Kobolev and appointed Yuri Vitrenko, the Acting Minister of Energy, as his successor.

On April 29, the Verkhovna Rada appointed German Galushchenko as Minister of Energy.

May

On May 14, the Cabinet of Ministers acknowledged A-92 and A-95 gasoline and diesel fuel as socially significant products and imposed regulation of their prices for the quarantine period.

On May 14, Minister of Economy Ihor Petrashko and Minister of Infrastructure Vladyslav Kryklii filed their resignations.

On May 20, the Verkhovna Rada appointed the head of Ukravtodor Oleksandr Kubrakov as the Minister of Infrastructure.

On May 26, Ukraine shut down air traffic with Belarus. On May 23, the Belarusian authorities forced the Ryanair plane to land in Minsk. The KGB officers detained Roman Protasevich, co-founder of the opposition Telegram channel NEXTA, on board.

June

Ukraine started importing gas for injection into storage facilities.

On June 7, President Volodymyr Zelenskyy stated that every minor citizen of Ukraine will receive interest from extracting minerals from the Ukrainian subsoil. This promise was formalized in the fall in the "economic passport" of the Ukrainian.

A ban on using free plastic bags in retail chains came into force. The transition period will end in March 2022.

The unemployment rate was 10.5% in the Q1, which is the highest since the beginning of 2017.

July

On July 1, the agricultural land market was opened. The past months have shown that this event did not lead to negative consequences that politicians talked about a lot.

Air traffic in Ukraine in July reached 70% of the pre-crisis level in July 2019. It increased by 121% compared to July 2020.

August

On August 11, the Cabinet of Ministers decided to reduce the electricity tariff for households consuming less than 250 kWh per month. For them, the tariff from October 1 was 1.44 UAH per 1 kW*h.

Consumer prices per liter of sunflower oil in July decreased by 0.34% compared to June. Prices for this product dropped for the first time over the year.

The Ministry of Energy approved a new monthly coal accumulation plan for thermal power plants. TPPs and CHPPs were supposed to accumulate twice as much coal by the heating season than according to the previous plan. This plan was not fulfilled.

September

On September 23, the Verkhovna Rada passed a law against the oligarchs. The NSDC promises to identify the first holders of this "title" in May 2022.

On September 25, the Bureau of Economic Security was to begin work. This has not happened to this day.

October

The employers began to experience a significant shortage of workers in certain professions. The reason was an increase in the outflow of personnel abroad. Labor migration from Ukraine reached the level before the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic.

On October 12, Ukraine and the EU signed the Common Aviation Area Agreement (Open Skies Treaty). The treaty still doesn't work.

On October 27, the SPF (State Property Fund) sold the Bolshevik plant in Kyiv at a privatization auction for 1.43 billion UAH. AMCU gave its permission for this purchase only in December.

November

On November 5, the Mayor of Kyiv Vitali Klitschko fired his deputy Oleksandr Gustieliev because of delaying construction of the Podilsko-Voskresenskyi Bridge. In October 2020, Klitschko stated that the bridge construction had been "at the final stage" and its automobile part would be opened by the end of 2020. After that, the opening date was repeatedly postponed.

The Russian Federation stopped the coal transit from Kazakhstan to Ukraine.

On November 12, the Kyiv plant Electronmash was sold at a privatization auction for 970 million UAH. Later, the winning bidder did not pay the needed amount, so the auction will be held again.

The producers of electricity from renewable sources obtained more than 10 billion UAH to compensate for old state debts. Only Rinat Akhmetov's DTEK was not paid.

On November 18, the head of the State Property Fund Dmytro Sennychenko announced that he had resigned. The Verkhovna Rada has not yet considered his leave notice.

On November 30, the deputies supported bill No. 5600 ("resource bill") that introduced significant amendments to the Tax Code and tax laws.

December

On December 16, the Verkhovna Rada passed a law on amendments to public procurement, known as the "localization" bill.

On December 21, the Antimonopoly Committee fined three companies controlled by the Roshen Europe BV group in the total amount of 283.6 million UAH for abusing their monopoly position in the molasses market. The authorities continue to put pressure on Petro Poroshenko, the fifth President.

The harvest of cereals, pulse crops, and oilseeds in the 2021-2020 marketing year amounted to 106 million tons. This is an absolute record for Ukraine.

On December 30, the Cabinet of Ministers limited the cost of natural gas for producers of flour and bread, milk, chicken, and sunflower oil until April 30, 2022. Earlier, a lot of producers stated that they would stop their production due to expensive gas.

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