The Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine ratified the renewed energy Annex XXVII to the Association Agreement between Ukraine and the European Union supported by 231 MPs. This decision is a prerequisite for energy independence and envisages new energy standards that will bring Ukraine closer to full membership in the EU and new rules that will ensure Ukraine's integration into the EU's internal energy markets.
Appealing to the MPs before the voting, Deputy Prime Minister for European and Euro-Atlantic integration of Ukraine Ivanna Klympush-Tsintsadze noted, "Dear MPs, you face a choice which will affect whether Ukraine's integration into the energy markets of the European Union is successful. Due to the decision of the Association Council between Ukraine and the EU on the updating of Annex XXVII to the Association Agreement between Ukraine and the EU, you will show the entire world the direction in which the Ukrainian people choose to advance. This decision is an indicator of the readiness of Ukraine and the European Union to deepen cooperation in the energy sector in order to achieve full market integration."
"This is true European integration but not just a document on paper. I assure you that full-fledged electricity and gas markets with effective competition and the right of choice for the final consumer won’t operate full out unless Ukraine becomes part of the European energy community", said Ivanna Klympush-Tsintsadze.
The Deputy Prime Minister explained to MPs the importance of Ukraine's energy Annex to the Association Agreement. It implies not only the right but also the obligation of European partners to provide Ukraine with recommendations to achieve the full integration of Ukraine's energy market in the EU's internal energy markets and to carry out bilateral monitoring of harmonization of legislation.
The Annex covers all energy markets. In particular, in the sector of electricity, the introduction of Directives and Regulations of the EU concerning the conditions for access to the network for transboundary electricity flows, integrity and transparency in the wholesale electricity market and the reliability of electricity supply as well as investment in infrastructure have been envisaged.
For the gas market, in particular, the introduction of EU requirements for the common rules for the internal natural gas market, conditions for access to transit networks, reliability of supplies, as well as requirements for transportation tariffs are stipulated for.
Moreover, Ukraine has to implement the EU Directive on the obligation to maintain minimum stocks of crude oil and/or petroleum products. In the field of energy efficiency, Ukraine undertakes commitments on the energy performance of buildings, as well as energy labeling of household appliances and equipment. Separate requirements for the ecodesign of energy-related products have been included. These measures shall improve the environment and reduce energy consumption.
In the nuclear energy sector, Ukraine, in particular, has to introduce the EU requirements for protection against threats posed by the ionizing radiation. Apart from that, Ukraine undertakes to comply with European standards for the supervision and control of shipments of radioactive waste and spent fuel.
Implementation of EU network codes in the sectors of gas and electricity, in particular, the Network Code of the EU on gas balancing in gas transmission systems has been envisaged. This code goes beyond the bounds of Ukraine's obligations within the framework of the Energy Community. Such an approach will allow for a permanent dialogue with the EU in a bilateral format and the country to become a full member of the EU energy market.
Ivanna Klympush-Tsintsadze called the ratification of the energy changes to the Agreement a landmark decision and thanked the MPs for their support, which guarantees the invariability of the process of European integration of Ukraine.