UCC meets with Canada’s Minister of International Development

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The Ukrainian Canadian Congress (UCC) briefed the Honourable Harjit Sajjan, Canada’s Minister of International Development, on January 4 on increasing Russian aggression against Ukraine and thanked him for his unwavering support for Ukraine.

“We look forward to working with Minister Sajjan to ensure that further Canadian assistance continues to make a difference,” said UCC National President Alexandra Chyczij in the briefing note.

The delegation met online and consisted of UCC’s Vice Presidents Ann Szyptur and Olesia Luciw-Andryjowycz, Director of Government Relations Paul Migus, UCC’s CEO Ihor Michalchyshyn, and UCC Senior Policy Advisor Orest Zakydalsky. UCC National President Alexandra Chyczij led the UCC delegation.

“As Ukraine faces continued Russian aggression, Canada’s contributions are key to the international effort to alleviate the humanitarian suffering caused by Russia’s ongoing invasion,” Chyczij said.

In a briefing note that UCC sent to Minister Sajjan, UCC recommended that Canada take the following steps to strengthen Ukraine’s democratic resilience and deter a further Russian invasion of Ukraine:

  1. Ensure that the Government of Canada’s commitment of $50 million ($35 million for development assistance) annually to Ukraine is met for the upcoming years;
  2. Stress to Ukraine’s authorities that continuing the path of democratic and economic reforms and anti-corruption efforts are key to maintaining Canadian and international support for Ukraine;
  3. Continue to assist Ukraine’s civil society in ensuring the continuing consolidation of democracy and democratic institutions. Particularly, Canada should continue to assist with programs that will build capacity and increase the effectiveness of Ukraine’s political parties, media and independent journalism and non-governmental organizations;
  4. Support efforts aimed at de-monopolization of Ukraine’s economy, including strengthening the effectiveness of Ukraine’s Anti-Monopoly Committee to encourage competition and economic development.

In the note, UCC said that one of the most effective ways to ensure that Ukraine can effectively defend itself against Russia’s aggression is through ensuring that Ukraine’s democratic institutions are robust and resilient. Moreover, Ukraine’s economic growth must provide an opportunity to prosper for all its citizens.

“Canadian international development assistance programming has contributed significantly to Ukraine’s progress in entrenching crucial reforms, including measures to prevent corruption in critical institutions and encourage inclusive and sustainable economic growth,” it said.

The UCC said it believes that Canada is uniquely positioned to assist with these important efforts, given Canada’s significant experience in competition legislation and its enforcement and the vast array of available experts who could be deployed to assist.

With files from UCC
This article is written under the Local Journalism Initiative agreement

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