Read the original text at 112.ua.
Popularization of the state in the world, creation of a positive image, and establishment of international cooperation are important components of foreign policy. Traditionally, this is the responsibility of the foreign policy department with the "reasonable support" of the country's leadership. One of the methods for realizing such tasks is foreign visits and business trips. We decided to find out how much money from the Ukrainian go to the abroad trips of the key state officials during performance of their official duties. To this end, we sent relevant inquiries to the Presidential Administration, the Cabinet of Ministers, the Verkhovna Rada and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
President's foreign trips
As of July 19, 2017 President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko has managed to carry out 18 trips to other states. The President has visited some countries more than once. So, the head of state has visited Germany for three times (January, February, May), and three times he visited France (May, June, July), Malta – two times (March and May).
11 million 131.5 thousand UAH from the budget were spent on the foreign trips of the head of state. In addition, the cost of air transportation of official delegations led by the president amounted to 14 million 717.5 thousand UAH. The Administration added that the accounting of expenses separately for each visit of the President is not provided for by legislation.
Foreign policy of PM
Not all of the official trips of Prime Minister Volodymyr Groisman in 2017 were carried out for public funds. According to the official response of the Cabinet Secretariat, in 2017,the head of government has officially visited five countries. The budget money was not allocated for visits to Turkey, Croatia, and Israel. 176 thousand 923.37 UAH were taken from the budget to cover Groisman’s trips to Belgium and Britain.
As is known, Groisman has visited Belgium in February, Turkey in March, Israel in May, Croatia in June, and the UK just in the current month.
Verkhovna Rada leadership
The Speaker of the Ukrainian Parliament, Andriy Parubiy, managed to visit six countries in seven foreign trips this year: Japan, Georgia, Italy, the USA, Turkey, and Poland (twice). By the way, the visit of the head of the Verkhovna Rada to the United States cost 138 thousand 599.42 UAH. In total, 213 thousand 033,83 UAH were spent from the state budget for the travels of Parubiy.
This year, the first deputy head of the parliament Iryna Gerashchenko had three business trips to France, Malta, and Georgia. These trips cost 119 thousand 183.83 UAH. By the way, there is no information on Gerashchenko's trips to Minsk within her tripartite contact group for the settlement of the situation in Donbas. Probably, such trips are financed from other sources.
Vice Speaker Oksana Syroid did not spend budget funds on her overseas business trips this year.
Minister of Foreign Affairs Pavlo Klimkin
2017 leader in official foreign visits is, of course, the head of the foreign policy department Klimkin. As part of his activities, he has carried out 32 visits. At the same time, the geography is very wide: the Foreign Minister visited both neighboring countries (Poland, Slovakia), in Western Europe (France, Italy), and in distant US, Singapore, Myanmar, and Israel. 944 thousand 421.66 UAH were taken from the budget to cover minister's trips. The most costly were his visits to the USA and Myanmar (over 100 thousand UAH each), as well as to Switzerland, Germany, Great Britain and Belgium.