The leadership of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine and heads of the committees of the Parliament, representatives of the Government and ambassadors of the EU member states discussed ways of enhancing cooperation on the path towards European integration. The meeting was held in the Parliament on the eve of the 20th Ukraine-European Union summit scheduled for July 9.
During the speech Vice Prime Minister for European and Euro-Atlantic Integration of Ukraine Ivanna Klympush-Tsintsadze stressed that the EU-Ukraine Association Agreement is the most ambitious agreement ever inked by the European Union with a third country and is comparable to those obligations assumed by candidate countries for the EU membership. She noted that, given the high dynamics of the development of the European legislation, there should be a clear understanding and vision of the targets and priority areas of cooperation between Ukraine and the European Union. The following four sectors are outlined as promising ones for further closer integration with the EU: Ukraine's integration into the energy sector, first of all, the EU gas market, in-depth cooperation in the digital economy, cooperation in the field of justice, freedom and security, as well as intensification of cooperation in the field of customs cooperation and technical regulation.
The Vice Prime Minister stressed the implementation of the Association Agreement led to qualitative changes in the country both in sectoral and horizontal terms. The horizontal changes encapsulate an increase in Ukrainian exports to the EU countries in 2017 to 40.5% and EU imports to Ukraine increased to 41.9%. Between Ukraine and the EU countries, the only legal field of activity of companies is already operating on the basis of the principles and requirements of EU law. A market surveillance system is in place based on the principles existing in European countries. The implementation of a comprehensive Action Plan for the implementation of the Agreement was approved and launched, which allowed to outline burning sectors in the process of the European integration. This analysis has enabled the sides to shape a clear road map of government-parliamentary interaction, to identify common priorities for the implementation of the Agreement and to properly organize work in the ministries and inter-agency coordination.
While speaking about sectoral changes, Ivanna Klympush-Tsintsadze emphasized that the most significant achievements are being observed in the educational and financial sectors, energy, energy efficiency and entrepreneurship, and improvement of the regulatory framework on banking regulation and supervision. At the same time, the implementation of the necessary reforms is slower than expected. This is, first of all, the healthcare sector, the reform of the domestic scientific sphere, bringing the legislation of Ukraine in line with the European standards in transport and postal services sectors.
The Vice Prime Minister thanked the lawmakers for effective cooperation in the implementation of the draft laws on the European integration and noted that its results can be successfully implemented only with the further support of international partners. Ivanna Klympush-Tsintsadze stressed the need to increase the institutional capacity of the authorities responsible for coordinating European integration.
The Speaker of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine Andrii Parubii underlined that a package of 57 bills designed to ensure the implementation of the Association Agreement this year are being considered by the diffrenet various committees and are at different stages of approval.
Hugues Mingarelli, EU Ambassador to Ukraine, Head of the EU Delegation to Ukraine, placed a special emphasis on the importance to understand Ukraine's views on the further development of relations with the EU on the eve of the Ukraine-EU summit. He noted that the prerequisite for successful implementation of the Agreement is the qualitative coordination of the efforts of the Government and Parliament, as well as the coordination of work in this direction within the Government. Hugues Mingarelli commended the successful work of the line Vice Prime Minister Ivanna Klympush-Tsintsadze. Ukraine has many significant achievements in introducing European best practices , but it is of utmost importance to ensure the draft laws on the European integration are submitted to the Parliament for consideration in the fall. Apart from that, it is necessary, according to the Head of the EU Delegation to Ukraine, to consolidate efforts and monitor work in order to outline weak points, as well as to step up communication efforts.