Prime Minister of Ukraine Volodymyr Groysman met on Monday with a delegation from the United States to tackle issue of reforming the Ukrainian customs and they presented the main recommendations concerning the needs of the customs service according to the results of their work.
At the beginning of the meeting, the Head of Government noted that event would be the beginning of the formation of “a rather ambitious, but absolutely realistic blueprint for the reform of the Ukrainian customs and border services”.
According to him, the old system of operation of the Ukrainian customs which was traditionally entwined with certain mechanisms of abuse, corruption, bribery and illicit enrichment shall be destroyed, but instead a new customs service should replace it. "The system requires broad, cross-cutting transformations", said Volodymyr Groysman.
The Prime Minister reminded that the organization of the mission’s activities with the participation of experts of the U.S. Customs and Border Protection Department to upgrade the customs service of Ukraine had become the result of his arrangement with Commissioner of U.S. Customs and Border Protection Gil Kerlikowske, Vice-President of the U.S. Joe Biden and the U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry.
"I raised the problem that Ukrainian customs requires changes and reforms, so for me as the initiator it is very important and I'm going to do everything in power to ensure implementation of this reform", said Volodymyr Groysman.
Members of the U.S. mission for the assessment of needs provided recommendations regarding the reform of the customs service of Ukraine, which will be contained in their report.
They noted key lines of retrofitting the customs, such as: improving the professionalism and efficiency of organization of the service, use of technology, equipment and reduction of the human factor, change of the management system in the customs service and trade to increase fees, revenues and the protection of national security, as well as the eradication of corruption.
Volodymyr Groysman expressed hope that the report would form the basis of the necessary actions to be approved by the Cabinet of Ministers. "It will be a guide for others and a commitment that reform needs to be accomplished", he said.
The Prime Minister proposed to establish a working group comprising representatives of Ukrainian and American side to execute the elaborated recommendations.
Participants of the meeting also agreed on the need for a comprehensive implementation of the developed plan.
The Head of Government thanked the representatives of the U.S. mission for their efforts and thorough work in making recommendations regarding the reform of the customs service of Ukraine. "On behalf of the Government I want to thank You for Your assistance and this work", he said.
In turn, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the United States to Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch said: "In the end we hope to see a capable, effective customs service of Ukraine, that can stand firm to protect the national economy and national security of Ukraine, that is capable to contribute to the development of trade and prevent corruption. This will lead to a more stable, secure and economically prosperous country. These are the goals that we all share, and the United States will work with you in order to turn these goals into real achievements."