"Where are the necessary technical and economic calculations?" the official asked. "Where were the forecasts about how this will affect the competitiveness of our economy? How does the tariff increase correlate to consumers' ability to pay? There are no answers to these questions. And this is very serious, because all we are doing is seeing the decline of citizens' standard of living."
For example, Kinakh noted, the massive Zaporozhye aluminum plant has recently been forced to stop operations completely due to the high cost of electricity; its energy-intensive production has been made uncompetitive thanks to whopping 40% electricity price hikes and the end of subsidies.
"If before, the plant was able to purchase electricity at a special rate, now this is impossible; the plant is being offered electricity at the same price as other companies, making it uncompetitive," the official lamented.
Ukraine's International Monetary Fund-mandated austerity measures, combined with the loss of Russian markets for Ukrainian goods, have also hit ordinary Ukrainians hard. The IMF has insisted on further cuts to subsidies on utilities for low-income citizens, leaving millions uncertain where they will get the money to heat their homes this winter.