Just Transition: First Mission of Mr. Stanislaw Tillich to Ukraine

On 5-9 July 2021, Mr. Stanislaw Tillich,  Special Envoy of the Federal Government of Germany for Structural Change in Ukrainian Coal regions, accomplished his first mission to Ukraine, framed by a multi-facetted agenda of various stakeholder meetings and a project-site visit in Western Ukraine.

As one of the chairmen of the German Commission for Growth, Structural Change and Employment (Coal Commission) and as a former Prime Minister of Saxony, Stanislaw Tillich  closely accompanied the discussions about the coal phase-out and structural change in the German regions concerned. As a high-ranking German special representative, he now directly provides impetus and experience to the Ukrainian coal transformation process. 

The cooperation with Ukraine on coal transformation and the associated structural change is an important aspect of the German-Ukrainian Energy Partnership. The German government supports the Ukrainian government’s efforts in coal transformation with a comprehensive project. 

On 6 July 2021,  Mr. Tillich took part in the Coordination Center session, chaired by Prime Minster Denys Shmyhal. The Coordination Center for Transformation of Coal Regions of Ukraine was founded in May 2020.  It is a multi-stakeholder platform to jointly prepare the transformation process of coal regions across the country, which involves representatives of the central government, local municipalities, enterprises, trade unions, civil society representatives, and experts.

 The Prime Minister welcomed Mr. Tillich  in Ukraine and looked forward to further cooperation within the framework of the German-Ukrainian Energy Partnership. At the meeting, a new project “Supporting Structural Change in Ukrainian coal regions” implemented by GIZ, with a duration of 5 years and a budget of 35  million Euro, was officially announced. Following a concise project overview, both sides agreed that it would be a common task to demonstrate quality in setting-up social, economic and environmental transformation policiess, and to successfully launch pilot projects in Chervonohrad and Myrnohrad, with multiplication potentials to other coal cities of Ukraine. The upcoming transformation process should be accompanied by new economic incentive programmes and cluster projects, for innovative sectors to be able to emerge. The project cooperates with a range of actors on all political levels, including the Ministry of Energy (MinEnergo) and the Ministry for Communities and Territories Development (MinRegion).

A dialogue on the establishment of a Multi-Donor Fund for the Transformation of Coal Regions is ongoing, with the aim to set-up an efficient and transparent financing mechanism, allowing to fund pilot projects, future-use plans and socio-economic transition programmes across Ukraine.

Mr. Tillich’s itinerary was completed on 8 July 2021 by an on-site visit to the selected pilot city of Chervonohrad. The work meeting was attended by two deputies - Yuriy Kamelchuk and Mykhailo Bondar - as well as by the mayor of Chervonohrad Andriy Zalivsky and the mayor of Myrnohrad Oleksandr Brykalov. These cities were selected for pilot projects focused on structural transformation. During the meeting, both Mayors presented the potentials of their communities and signed a memorandum on inter-municipal cooperation.