On October 16, 2015, Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko and Odessa Governor Mikheil Saakashvili opened the Administrative Service Center in Odessa, Ukraine. The center provides access to fast and convenient administrative services for Odessa’s residents and is “a symbol of change in the state’s attitude towards its citizens," according to President Poroshenko.

The center will significantly reduce the amount of time it takes to receive almost 60 types of administrative services. Thanks to the center's one-stop shop model, residents can now register a business or real estate, as well as acquire a passport, quickly and under one roof.

The East Europe Foundation (EEF), Eurasia Foundation’s legacy organization in Ukraine, provided expertise, information, and financial support to establish the center. EEF supported the establishment of the service center through the E-Governance for Accountability and Participation Program (EGAP), funded by the Swiss Confederation, and the USAID Leadership in Economic Governance Program (LEV). EGAP seeks to strengthen good governance and modern public service delivery in Ukraine by using new information communication technologies, while LEV promotes the development of small- and medium-sized enterprises in Ukraine.

EEF and its team of experts broke the provision of administrative services into its component parts and identified numerous redundant steps that could be eliminated, focusing on increasing efficiency and reducing the length of time required to complete various business services. For example, it now takes only 15 minutes to change a business’s information in the State Register, and a business can be registered in just a matter of hours. These improvements were made possible with the close cooperation of the Ministry of Justice, which changed its regulations in technical information systems, making it possible to create similar centers in other regions of Ukraine.

“I visited the center to receive service today,” said Odessa resident Anna Maivska. "Everything was ideal and quick! Without lines, without narrow, small, crowded corridors. For the first time in my life I understand I want to interact with the state. And I’m even satisfied with this.”

EEF’s team of professionals is working with the Odessa Department of Justice and Odessa City Council to continue to support the reform process in this vital region. In 2 months, they have developed and submitted over 15 proposals to amend regulations that would improve the provision of administrative services. These efforts have already borne fruit at the national level. On September 2, the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine introduced express registration of real estate property rights with the payment of higher registration fees. The team is also working to simplify other administrative services, such as the registration of public associations. According to Ukrainian law, registering a public association should take no more than 7 days, but in practice registration can stretch to more than a month. With support from EEF’s expert team, the center aims to provide this service in 24 hours, pending approval of the new administrative workflow from the Ministry of Justice.

For updates about the center, please visit their Facebook page