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Transparency Reform Reveals Ukrainian Politicians’ Wealth

Ukrainian Prime Minister Volodymyr Hroysman revealed that he and his wife had a total of $1.2 million and 460,000 euros in cash. (file photo)

An anticorruption reform requiring senior Ukrainian officials to declare their wealth online has exposed a vast difference between the fortunes of politicians and those they represent.

Some declared millions of dollars in cash. Others said they owned fleets of luxury cars, expensive Swiss watches, diamond jewels, and large tracts of land.

Officials had until October 30 to upload details of their assets and income in 2015 to a publicly searchable database, part of an International Monetary Fund-backed drive to boost transparency and modernize Ukraine's recession-hit economy.

Prime Minister Volodymyr Hroysman, who last week likened the declarations process to jumping out of an airplane, revealed that he and his wife had a total of $1.2 million and 460,000 euros in cash and a collection of luxury watches.

The database also shows that Hroysman, a former businessman and provincial mayor, is not alone in preferring to keep much of his money out of Ukraine's banking system.

Calculations based on the declarations by the Reuters news agency show that the 24 members of the Ukrainian cabinet together have nearly $7 million in cash alone.

In Ukraine, the average salary of citizens is just over $200 per month.

Based on reporting by Reuters and AP