Our joint efforts within «Excise Taxes Save Lives!» campaign had brought its first fast victory. After the roundtable and joint event on March 26 which was held in front of the Parliament of Ukraine, MPs had adopted the Law on Increase of the Excise Taxes. «It now became a precedent. Under the pressure of patient community, Ukrainian Parliament had reacted very quickly and has increased the excise taxes! From now on, Ukrainian budget will receive additional 500 mln. UAH», — says Dmytro Sherembey, Chairman of the Board of Charitable Foundation «Patients of Ukraine».
In fact, Ukrainian Parliament had adopted the law, which was designed by Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine in hurry during the night of 26-27 March. This happened right after an event «Excise Taxes Save Live!» was held and the resonance that it caused in mass media. In this draft law the compromising rates of excise taxes are envisaged. These rates were supported by NGOs, as these rates will help a lot in filling the state budget.
«Tabaco and alcohol lobby does everything that it possibly can do by pressing on Ukrainian government and Parliament. At first, the Parliament had rejected to register our draft laws, but after all, they did register them. After event «Excise Taxes Save Lives!» was held and a lot of us had came to support it in front of the Parliament, the MPs had understood that they need to make concessions towards the NGOs. However, they had tricked us by raising the excise taxes, but not transferring them for the needs of drug procurement, which is unacceptable! Therefore, our next step should be joint the fight for transferring money from the «deadly» goods for the treatment purposes.» — declares Alexander Ponomarenko, economist, one of the draft laws’ authors.
Therefore we consider that patients’ organizations should agree on supporting and following such priorities:
Having a common goal and a strong mutual support we can change the Ukrainian healthcare system and save hundreds of lives!