Savik Shuster: UBI will free Ukraine of corruption

Savik Shuster: UBI will free Ukraine of corruption

OMF President Savik Shuster made a statement in his TV show “Freedom of Speech with Savik Shuster” on the urgent need to introduce Universal Basic Income (UBI) in Ukraine.

The results of the foundation´s survey polls show that today people live in fear and humiliation, these emotions can lead to a massive deterioration in the health of citizens, not to mention the economic consequences for the whole country. Savik Shuster addressed all public figures and politicians of the country to take urgent steps and develop a strategy towards introducing the Universal Basic Income in Ukraine.

Full version of Savik Shuster`s statement:

I’d like to go back to the topic of “Basic income”. Honestly, I don’t want to discuss it, but to explain to people what it is, because Spain has already decided that its residents are to be given “basic income” during the coronavirus crisis and after it. It will account for 475 dollars per month per a person, a family member.

You know, I had been writing a book in 2017 which was published in 2018. (The title - Freedom of Speech against Fear and Humiliation. A Social Experiment on Live Television: the First Map of Collective Emotions of a Country) Its second part is called “The recipe for survival”, and I mostly wrote about “basic income”, which can be a great recipe for the survival of Ukraine.


Basic income is a certain amount of money that a state provides for every family member from the cradle to the grave.

I just notionally proposed two minimal salaries for a family member in Ukraine. The British RSA counted (before the crisis) that if a person in Britain receives 3700 pounds (!) from the age of 21, the GDP will increase by 1%. Such a result can be achieved by implementing actual reforms of the entire welfare system. Thus, we realize that World War II is over, and Europe, that suffered considerably (I’m sure everyone understands to what extend), faced a crucial problem in establishing new states and unions, the problem 2 of social welfare. The USA didn’t suffer from the war and didn’t need to deal with such a problem. Actually, the United States didn’t go through any war or terrorist attack until 2001. If compared, Europe suffered a lot. But the coronavirus crisis shows that the social welfare system should be reconsidered deeply. And the discussion revolves around basic income.

Three years ago I was considered as a communist, or even socialist. It was said that I wanted to deprive the rich of their wealth and give everything to the poor. That’s nonsense.

I emphasize that basic income (UBI) is a responsibility of every person to their family and society.

This is the main idea.

We delegate responsibilities to a person and they dispose of their money themselves.

We conduct a great audit of a social system. We monitor the level of corruption, overspend and wrong spending in medical sphere, in healthcare, in the Ministry of social policy, Retirement fund.

All these things are a big expenditure and should be removed, so a person themselves can start taking control of their life. This is the basis.

Today, a collective letter of an international network appeared in the Internet. It is in favour of basic income (actually, it appeared yesterday, but was published only today). By the way, I‘m a member of this organisation. And more than 500 professors throughout the world: from Europe to India - have already signed the letter. It is said in the public letter that without substantial help from the governments all countries will suffer, businesses will shut down, unemployment rates will grow rapidly, and we will face the Great depression again.

If we don‘t implement basic income immediately, we will see the revolt. Lives will be lost.

And it has been signed by a great number of people. The global elite has signed it. When I was writing the book (actually it was three years ago before the crisis)

I considered basic income to be an efficient move against corruption from the perspective of the family, the society and finally 3 from the perspective of corruption itself.

Because a citizen, being responsible for everything that he receives from the state, will definitely keep an eye on corrupt people. It is obvious that all money taken illegaly, has been taken from a citizen‘s own pocket.

That‘s why I suggest the politicians in the Parliament and in the Government take a closer look at the current agenda in the world.

It has already been discussed in the USA concerning 1200 dollars, in Spain, we’ve heard about it from Italy, France, in Germany it has already become mainstream. And it’s not only me saying “Let’s do it in this way” like a snob. No, the whole world is talking about it. That’s why I would approach it in a serious manner. You see our discussion: “We are mending the holes”, “Where will you get money for this? And for that?” The Minister doesn’t convince anyone, but if he does, people bid him godspeed. In fact, we need a deep, profound reform of social sphere. Otherwise…I’m joining those who have signed the letter, I will sign it -

otherwise we will die. I mean, in terms of economics.

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