ARCHIVES Danyliw Seminar 2017
Oleh Havrylyshyn is the former Deputy Minister of Finance Ukraine, former senior official for the IMF, and a widely recognized research economist. He has acted as an advisor to senior officials in the Ukrainian government and has published numerous books and articles related to political economy and economic reform in independent Ukraine.
The Political Economy of Independent Ukraine:
Slow Starts, False Starts, and a Last Chance? (Palgrave, 2017)
This book offers the first comprehensive treatise of the entire period from Ukrainian independence to modern day, tracing the path of economic reforms, structural transformation, and performance compared to other transition countries. Testing several conventional hypotheses, the author proposes a number of re-interpretations. These include the assertion that economic development was impeded by Russian imperialism, Ukrainian oligarchy, and the desire of the first Ukrainian government to become the new capitalists. Additionally, Havrylyshyn explains how the Ukrainian standard of living and correctly-valued GDP have risen well above those in Soviet times, but confirms with solid qualitative evidence that Ukraine remains one of the most corrupt post-communist societies. The arguments employed by post-Maidan governments who say that it takes years to reduce corruption are gainsaid by the experience of several transition countries. The central conclusion of this review is that Ukraine’s economic performance fell far behind these other countries, as best exemplified by a comparison with Poland.