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 APOCALYPSE TODAY. THE HRYVNIA DROP: SCHEME OR COLLAPSE OF UKRAINE?

What the numerous bankers and experts forecasted for a long time has happened not two months before the elections – though insignificantly, but the hryvnia did drop. The government typically blames the opposition while the President carefully hinted that Ukraine is caught in the world financial crisis.

On Tuesday, September 4 the national currency has set a new 'record' in the Interbank exchange market. At the end of trading the price indicators reached a new high of 8,1800/8,2000. Last time the currency was this low against the US dollar was November 2009. The simultaneous growth of gas prices by 9 -11 kopecks (5 cents per gallon) signifies a serious flop in the work of the National Bank and the government on the whole.

Mykola Azarov tried to calm the population but his words have not has the desired effect. "We have a season of political competitions. The government is doing everything it can to make sure they are civilized and do not influence the country's economic development. I want to address those who are acting on the principle of 'the worse, the better' - we will not let you destabilize the country. Economically this Fall is not going to be any worse than the previous one. There are no reasons for apocalyptical scare of the population", said the Prime Minister. Mr. Azarov would probably be surprised if he knew how an average Ukrainian interprets his statements. Most of them have a strong reflex against believing these sugar coated speeches of the head of the Cabinet. If he says there is no threat than you should prepare for the worst.

It is interesting to see veiled though still noticeable attempts to place the blame on the opposition. This is one of the themes of Azarov's speech. The Regions deputy Mykhailo Chechetov went even further: "This is all done in view of the elections, deliberately, to show that the government is supposedly not able to ensure the currency stability and other things. I call this sabotage against the state by certain politicians and pseudo-experts".

It is a very comfortable position. According to the government, the scandals in London Olympics when our athletes' medals were taken away were also the fault of the opposition. And now it is to blame for the drop of the national currency. Naturally, the question arises: is the government responsible for anything at all? In 2010-2011 for some crazy reason the buckwheat disappeared from the shelves and then the prices for it blew sky-high. Eventually the blame was placed on dealers, weather, and frenzy. And now a potential candidate for expulsion from the Regions Valeriy Konovalyuk accuses the opposition. The ruling party is not trying to invent anything new. They clearly know who is guilty no matter what happens.

If we talk about sabotage it is something peculiar. Thus, after the drop of the hryvnia the news spread that banks introduce limitations on the dollar sale to one person. "Starting today we do not sell over $300 to one person. It is our own initiative but I know that similar restrictions have been enacted in other banks too. Further steps will depend on the corresponding decrees of the National Bank", stated anonymous head of the department of one of the largest banks of Ukraine.

The bankers think that the NBU would do well to get involved into the situation soon, otherwise it can get out of control and cause panic among population. "People are already emptying the exchange points to make a dollar reserve. If the demand grows, a limit on cash dollar sales will have to be introduced", said a treasurer of one of the largest banks. Curiously the news was published by the Internet site UNN belonging to the President's advisor Hanna Herman. The resource is known for being a dump of dubious information such as a video of Tymoshenko's surveillance or the pictures of the colonies where the opposition leaders are. Every piece of news published there can be stamped as approved by the regime. Thus, we can come to the conclusion that this currency panic is beneficial for the people in high places. The opinion is supported be an opposition candidate Oleksandra Kuzhel. "I don't believe that the situation just suddenly occurred yesterday and that the National Bank was not prepared for it. It reminds me of a scheme and a well-organized one at that. As far as I know the way the NBU operates, it always predicts situations like this", said Kuzhel in an interview to Censor.NET. "For the money market, for the finances any panic is like an avalanche which is hard to stop. That is why the situation occurred either to show how they "can hold it" (the situation under control) or... well, it is hard to presume that they are complete idiots".

Even though the last statement is not that hard to believe. Thus, first deputy chairman of BYuT-Batkivschyna fraction Serhiy Sobolev thinks that the actions of the NBU lead Ukraine to financial collapse. Meanwhile. The leader of the opposition Arseniy Yatsenyuk is confident that Monday marked the beginning of the end: "The stability from the Party of Regions is beginning to settle in. Prime Minister Azarov in the closed part of the Cabinet meeting said, "Things are going not just bad, but really bad". The government is hiding the facts from the people", said Yatsenyuk. "Monday marked the beginning of the end for Ukraine... In reality there are only 15 billion dollars in reserves, but not 30 as the government claims ".


More and more experts and politicians agree that this is just the beginning that will be followed by the collapse of the national currency and economics. "In these hard times, when the financial crisis is raging in the worl d, it cannot pass on our country", stated Viktor Yanukovych. And these words are a serious excuse for the future. So Azarov has nothing to worry about: there are no reasons for apocalyptic intimidation of the people. Everybody is already expecting it.

 
 
 
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