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Accompanied by Hennadii Zubko, Vice Prime Minister of Ukraine, and Dr Annika Weidemann, Acting Head of the EU Delegation to Ukraine, Dr Angela Merkel had a guided tour around the House of Decentralisation which is the office of U-LEAD with Europe, a multi-donor programme funded by the European Union and its member states Denmark, Estonia, Germany, Poland and Sweden with the aim to support the Ukrainian government in implementing the milestone decentralisation reform.
The Chancellor learned about U-LEAD’s support to the Ministry of Regional Development, Construction, Housing and Communal Services of Ukraine headed by Hennadii Zubko and the Programme’s operations at the local and regional level in all 24 Ukrainian oblasts, including the Donetsk and Luhansk Oblasts, where U-LEAD has established and maintains Local Government Development Centres.
“We are happy to see that U-LEAD with Europe has grown into a large-scale and multi-donor mechanism to support regional development, decentralisation, sector reforms in education and healthcare, as well as amalgamation of municipalities,” said Dr Annika Weidemann.
“It is a great honour for us to welcome the German Chancellor at the House of Decentralisation and inform her about the tangible results of the support provided to Ukraine by the European Union, Germany and four other EU member states,” said Bastian Veigel, GIZ Programme Director of U-LEAD with Europe.
U-LEAD focuses its support on 705 fully fledged amalgamated communities (hromadas, AHs) and 125 newly established AHs which will have their first elections on 23 December 2018. In 2016-2018, U-LEAD with Europe held over 4,000 training events for more than 100,000 participants across Ukraine, mainly for newly elected heads of AHs and their specialists. Also, up to 600 Administrative Service Centres throughout Ukraine will be launched and supported by U-LEAD with Europe by 2020.
Background Information: Ukraine – Local Empowerment, Accountability and Development Programme (U-LEAD with Europe) is implemented in 2016-2020 by the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH and the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida) in partnership with the Ministry of Regional Development, Construction, Housing and Communal Services of Ukraine.