Arranged by the Association of Ukrainian Cities, the XVI Ukrainian Municipal Forum was held in Odesa on July 27-29, 2021.
The list of participants includes the heads of the communities – partners of the Association of Ukrainian Cities, deputies of the city councils, central government authorities, members of parliament, representatives of the German government on governance and decentralization reforms in Ukraine, members of the European Parliament, the Energy Efficiency Fund, Ukrainian banks, partner associations of local governments from other countries, international experts.
The Forum program envisages three thematic days.
July 27 was devoted to the Day of Local Democracy and Open Government. The participants discussed the topical issues related to open government and innovation of democratic development to improve citizen participation, promote, and protect human rights at the local level, as well as greater representation and support of women in politics.
July 28 is the Energy Efficiency Day dedicated to the Project on “Promotion of energy efficiency and implementation of the EU Directive on energy efficiency in Ukraine”. This project is implemented in Ukraine by the Program “Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH”.
The discussion on energy efficiency and environmental impact was held that day. The energy management tools for communities were presented, and the state of play in the implementation of the Memorandum between the government and mayors on solving systemic problems of heat and water supply was discussed.
In particular, Serhiy Nahornyak, Chairman of the Sub-committee on Energy Saving and Energy Efficiency of the Verkhovna Rada Committee on Energy, Housing and Utility Services, expressed the hope that the new law on energy efficiency will be adopted in September this year.
This should create new framework conditions for increasing the energy efficiency in accordance with EU requirements and practices.
Torsten Wöllert, Minister Counselor of the EU Delegation to Ukraine, who also attended the Forum, admitted that the fight against climate change, which is also significantly affected by energy consumption, was intensifying across Europe.
“Not only the European Commission, but also the EU member states offer Ukraine a wide range of support measures, and I hope that this assistance will be extended in the coming years. This will allow us to better adapt to climate change and respond to it systematically,” Torsten Wöllert concluded.
Yulia Holovatiuk-Ungureanu, Director of the Energy Efficiency Fund, in her turn, told the participants about the opportunities and benefits of participating at the Energodim program, that allows Ukrainians to reimburse most of expenditures on energy modernization of their homes.
July 29 will be dedicated to the “Day of Dialogue: Sustainable Local Social and Economic Development”, held under the U-LEAD with Europe Program “Promoting Comprehensive Community Development through Analysis, Dialogue and Cooperation”.