Administrative Reform and Local Elections in Ukraine 2020

23. October 2020


2020 has been an important year for Ukrainian local politics. Firstly, administrative reform

has introduced a new strengthened and decentralized administrative division of the country,

with the goal of strengthening local self-government. Also as a result of new administrative

division, the country now also has new electoral districts for local elections that will for the

first time be mostly conducted according to a proportional party list system. Secondly, it

is a year of the local elections on 25 October 2020, elections that follow triumph of the

Servant of the People party in presidential and parliamentary elections, which delivered a

strong mandate for the president and majority in parliament. Therefore elections are not

only important for local decision making, but will also be an indicator of the real support

for President Zelenskyy and his Servant of the People party. Recent public opinion polls

show that in general Ukrainians support mainly established national political parties that

have representation also in country’s Parliament. The ruling Servant of the People Party has

clear lead overall, followed by main pro-Russian opposition party Opposition Platform – For

Life and two pro-European opposition parties European Solidarity and Batkivshchyna. At

the same time, it is probable, that in many big cities parties led by popular local politicians

prevail. It is therefore expected that that the national parties, especially ruling Servant of

the People party, are dependent on cooperation and the formation of coalitions with other

national and also with local parties.


Please read the full analysis by ECEAP Senior Research Fellow Aap Neljas here Administrative Reform and Local Elections in Ukraine 2020