On a submission from President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelenskyy, the Verkhovna Rada appointed Oleksiy Reznikov Minister of Defense of Ukraine. 273 people's deputies voted for the decision.
Presenting Oleksiy Reznikov's candidacy for the post of Defense Minister in the session hall of the parliament, Volodymyr Zelenskyy expressed confidence that the new minister, like his predecessor, would work to strengthen Ukraine's defense capabilities.
"Today, the most important thing for the Minister of Defense is to be in the "hall of glory" of Ukrainian fighters - that is, to enjoy unquestioning respect and high authority among them. To strengthen the defense capabilities of our army. What is important is to provide decent conditions for our defenders of Ukraine," Volodymyr Zelenskyy said.
The President also thanked Andriy Taran for his work as Minister of Defense of Ukraine and called on people's deputies to support Oleksiy Reznikov's candidacy.
Addressing the MPs, Oleksiy Reznikov noted that the Ministry of Defense, a civilian agency, should shape the policy and vision of the army and create conditions for the Armed Forces of Ukraine to effectively repel the enemy.
"The war with Russia has been lasting for eight years. The hybrid nature of the conflict, the military potential of the occupying power and the security situation in the world require Ukraine's response to these challenges to be comprehensive and adaptive. The price of escalation should be unacceptable for the aggressor, and the cost of temporary occupation of our territories should constantly increase for them," Oleksiy Reznikov stressed.
He also outlined the main directions of his work in the new position. In particular, ensuring synergies in the activities of the Ministry of Defense, the General Staff and the profile committee of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine. The Ministry of Defense should also work closely with the Ministry of Strategic Industries.
"Together, we must gradually change the structure of the defense budget so that it is the budget of a modern combat-ready army," he said.
In addition, Oleksiy Reznikov stressed the priority of expanding strategic cooperation with NATO and the United States. There is a significant potential for deepening cooperation with Great Britain, Canada, Poland, Turkey and the Baltic States.
"In the framework of strategic relations with the United States, the agreements established during the visit of the President of Ukraine to Washington should be filled with content," Oleksiy Reznikov said.
He called another priority a change in the approach to personnel policy in the army and the transformation of the Armed Forces into a powerful employer that competes for the best staff and cares for people from the beginning of choosing a profession to the adaptation after service.
The next direction, according to Oleksiy Reznikov, is to improve the quality of management.
"My first step will be a full audit of the Ministry, analysis of internal processes and document management. "The Ukrainian "paper" army must remain in the past," he stressed.
According to Oleksiy Reznikov, special attention will be paid to the organization of defense procurement, as well as to the completion of the division of powers between the Ministry of Defense and the Armed Forces.
"A strong army is one of the most powerful diplomatic arguments in the peace process. If we want peace, if we want to return Crimea, the occupied territories of the Donetsk and Luhansk regions, we need to increase the country's defense capabilities and resilience," he stressed.
"The results of the Ministry's activities affect the entire sector and the resilience of the country as a whole. Therefore, I consider the submission for this position as a great honor and at the same time I understand the full weight of responsibility," Oleksiy Reznikov summed up.