Moscow Patriarchate church renamed, power grid improves, Russia’s 2023 war plans

28 December 2022, 03:20 PM

Your slice of the top headlines in Ukraine. Daily. Wednesday, December 28th, 2022.

•   The Constitutional Court of Ukraine (CCU) has ruled that a law renaming the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the Moscow Patriarchate (UOC-MP) to the Russian Orthodox Church in Ukraine to be constitutional.

The law was initially challenged in 2019 by the UOC-MP, when the Ministry of Culture first proposed the change. Now that the law has been ruled to be in line with Ukraine’s constitution, the UOC-MP will be forced to adopt the new naming scheme, in order to fully make clear its affiliation with their parent organization in Moscow.

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•   In another blow against the Moscow church, the Ministry of Culture has also recommended that a lease for two churches in the Eastern Orthodox holy site of the Kyiv-Pechersk Lavra not be extended.

•   Ukraine has improved its power generation capability in recent days.

According to national power grid operator Ukrenergo, the connection of a new nuclear reactor, and a power generation unit at a thermal power plant, have contributed to this uptick in power generation. However, this still isn’t enough to fully cover demand in the country, and Ukrenergo warned that many localities, including Kyiv, will still be subject to intermittent blackouts.

•   Russia destroys the Azot chemical plant in Severodonetsk.

Despite Russian promises to restore the facility to working order, Russian forces in recent days have instead been stripping equipment from the plant and shipping it off to Russia, the mayor of Severodonetsk, Oleksandr Striuk said. Similar actions are being taken at other industrial enterprises in the region, he added.

•   Russian nuclear operator Rosatom will demand compensation for an unbuilt nuclear power plant in Finland.

Rosatom claims that they are due this compensation after Finnish company Fennovoima Ltd, established to build the Hanhikivi-1 nuclear plant, unilaterally terminated this contract with Rosatom. Fennovoima Ltd claims that despite Rosatom’s accusations of political reasoning behind this situation, the actual reason is far more prosaic: from 2015 to 2022, Rosatom contributed almost nothing to the plant’s construction.

•   Ukrainian business has slowed the fall of the country’s GDP from a projected 50% to only 32%.

That’s according to a statement made by Minister of Economic Development and Trade Yulia Svyrydenko, who thanked business for their adaptability in changing to suit wartime conditions. She also noted that Ukraine’s budget is currently 50% funded by tax revenues, and 50% thanks to financial aid from international partners.

•   The day’s long read: Putin's war plan for 2023. What to expect in Ukraine editor-in-chief Yuriy Butusov lays out the key takeaways from speeches made by Russian dictator Vladimir Putin and Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu on Russia’s war plans in the coming year.

Don’t miss: Bad week for the ruble and Kremlin

Investment banker Serhiy Fursa covers the wobbling of the ruble in the closing weeks of 2022.

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