Yanukovych royalties for unwritten books can be viewed as a political bribe


Olexander Afronin, President of the Ukrainian Publishers and Booksellers Association, has told Ukrainsky Tyzhden that he has never heard of royalties for books which have not been written where there isn’t even a plan for it.

“I am not personally aware of such cases although I’ve heard that European and American publishing companies which know of a popular writer’s way of writing, how his or her books are received by the audience, or who have been given an idea of the plot of the book, can give an advance in accordance with the contract.”

He stressed however that this can only be an advance of part of the amount, while the full reckoning is after the book is presented for publication.

He points out also that he knows of no authors whether in Eastern or Western Europe who would receive such royalties. If anybody gets such kind of amounts, it’s only writers whose books everybody reads, all around the world. “In my milieu I don’t know people who would read the immortal works of our President. In my opinion, Yanukovych’s royalty can be viewed as a political bribe”.

He adds that he does not know a single publishing company capable of paying such royalties.

As reported, in his income declaration for 2012 President Yanukovych declared 15 and a half million UAH in royalties.  This is supposedly based on an agreement signed the previous year. On 24 April 2012  the President’s Administration informed Ukrainska Pravda that it did not have the agreement according to which President Yanukovych had apparently sold rights to his books for 16.4 million UAH.  The money was supposedly from the Donetsk publisher Novy Svit, and not just for three books already published, but for any that he may write at a future date.

The President’s Administration answered a formal information request from Ukrainska Pravda, asserting that it could not be the holder of the information requested. It only confirmed that the above-mentioned money had been paid to the President by Novy Svit.

The payment was “for the copyright passed to this publisher on the books from 2005-2010 "A Year in Opposition, "; “In politics there are no final victories or defeats”; "A Year in Office, " and "How Ukraine Should Live Further, " as well as for literary works written in the future by Viktor Yanukovych”.

When asked about the amount which not even the most popular authors have heard of, President Yanukovych promised to give it to charity. 

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