The Decree of the President of Ukraine No.15/2019 "Issues of European and Euro-Atlantic Integration" signed yesterday, April 20, excludes the possibility of diverting from the strategic course since it enshrines the functions and responsibilities of all authorities in Ukraine to implement this course. Ivanna Klympush-Tsintsadze, Deputy Prime Minister for European and Euro-Atlantic Integration of Ukraine, commented on the adoption of the Decree. She considers the document provides for systematic and orderly activities of all government structures in Ukraine, leaving no room for manipulation and shifting responsibility.
Under the Decree, in addition to approving the Action Plan for the implementation of the state's strategic course in gaining full membership of Ukraine in the EU and NATO, the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine together with the relevant state authorities is commissioned to implement this Action Plan with the quarterly reporting of the President of Ukraine. The Action Plan itself there are 31 items with various objectives for the period of 2019-2020.
In particular, the Plan contains an item on the elaboration of proposals for revision of the Association Agreement between Ukraine and the EU in December this year, and during 2019-2020 for working with the EU side on further trade liberalization, the conclusion of an Agreement on the Conformity Assessment and Acceptance of Industrial Goods (Agreement ACAA); integration into the EU internal markets in the fields of energy and digital economy; cooperation in the field of justice, freedom and security.
The Plan contains items on expanding the sources and tools of attracting international assistance, improving funding for foreign diplomatic institutions of Ukraine, developing cooperation in the field of education and research, and expanding the presence of foreign educational institutions in Ukraine, in particular by opening the College of Europe in Ukraine and the Eastern Partnership European School, as well as on the further development of the European Camp in Ukraine, consultations with the EU side on the possible participation of Ukraine in the Framework Programme for Research and Innovation (Horizon Europe).
By September 2020, it is planned to ensure, during the development and revision of the standards of higher education in certain specialties, the requirements for educational programs on European and Euro-Atlantic integration issues, and by the end of 2019, - raising the professional competence of civil servants, local government officials, the military and staff of the Armed Forces Ukraine on European and Euro-Atlantic integration issues.
It concerns also deepening of cooperation with the EU in the areas of information security and cybersecurity, ensuring critical infrastructure sustainability, combating transnational crime, strengthening border security, minimizing migration risks, as well as Ukraine's participation in projects implemented within the framework of the European Defense Fund, the Permanent Structured Cooperation (PESCO), Coordinated Annual Review on Defense (CARD), as well as participation in international programs for research and innovation in the interests of strengthening the defense capabilities of Ukraine.
Within the framework of deepening cooperation with NATO it is planned to expand Ukraine's participation in the NATO Science for Peace and Security Programme, a visit to Ukraine by the North Atlantic Council delegation in July 2019, cooperation on monitoring the situation and joint response to the aggression of the Russian Federation in the Black and the Azov Seas, preparation and submission of proposals for a referral to the North Atlantic Council of NATO and the Secretary General of NATO on Ukraine's accession to the NATO Membership Action Plan in December 2019, working out with the NATO side issues of the accession of Ukraine to the NATO Enlargement Opportunities Program in 2020.
In June 2019, it is planned to prepare amendments to the Law of Ukraine "On the Security Service of Ukraine", to conduct a series of measures to optimize the management of the Armed Forces in accordance with the Euro-Atlantic norms and principles; to change the budget planning and procurement format in the defense sector, to develop a project for an autonomous military base in eastern Ukraine and a naval base on the Azov Sea coast, etc.
"If we fulfill the approved Plan with consistency and efficiency, the issues of membership of the EU and the Alliance will look very close and realistic", noted the Deputy Prime Minister.