WITHIN TWO YEARS, VERKHOVNA RADA ADOPTED 70 EUROPEAN INTEGRATION LAWS

During the first two years of the Association Agreement signing about 70 laws have been adopted, aimed at its implementation and realization of reforms, and Ukraine has got a chance to reach a compromise with the EU on some issues, including a referendum in the Netherlands.

During the first two years of the Association Agreement signing about 70 laws have been adopted, aimed at its implementation and realization of reforms, and Ukraine has got a chance to reach a compromise with the EU on some issues, including a referendum in the Netherlands.

Coordinator of the Parliamentary expert group Denis Chernikov expressed the hope that on December 15, during a meeting of the European Union, a solution for the ratification of the Agreement by the Netherlands will be found and, respectively, the ratification process will be completed.

“Of course, our legislative activity and the ratification process are not formally linked but would like to in order the lawmaking to give positive signals to our European partners that we make and we have to continue steps forward, to demonstrate the immutability of the course in reforming the legislation,” said the expert.

At the same time, he expressed a concern that over 20 important bills are “hung” in the Parliament. Experience has shown that on average a complex, fundamental bill is considered by the Parliament within a year, most of these twenty documents submitted by the Government to the Parliament in May-June this year, so you can calculate the expected acceptance, stated the expert.

PEG Coordinator stressed that experts had analyzed more than 400 bills that somehow affected the Association Agreement, and found that 210 of them did not meet the obligations assumed by Ukraine, and 50 needed substantial revision.

Another problem is a large number of bills submitted to the Parliament, nearly 5,000 of them were registered; a year ago, the number of them was nearly 2,500. Parliament committees physically cannot cope with such a huge amount and are not able to provide the appropriate conclusions. Priority for European integration and implementation of reform bills are simply sung in that torrent; the Parliament does not consider them as a priority. As a result, the pace of legislative activity is significantly reduced.

According to the expert, there must be some logic in reviewing laws and regulations and a filter in the VR that helps to reduce the amount and focus on the most important ones, removing inconsistent. For example, the Parliament was filed with 25 bills on the creation of free economic zones, what is contrary to the Association Agreement and the European standards and 17 draft laws on waste management, although the agreement provides approval strategies in this area first.

In turn, talking about the Dutch referendum question, PEG expert, Doctor of Law Tetiana Anakina stressed that in the EU there is a compromise practice of adopting a separate act concerning the attitudes of individual Member States. She recalled that at one time there were significant problems with the entry into force of the Maastricht Treaty. For example, Denmark refused to ratify it because of concerns about its national interests (the issue concerned the institution of the EU citizenship that the country was principled about in the context of sovereignty). The way to defuse the situation was the adoption of the Declaration on the citizenship of the Union, the Kingdom of Denmark declared at the Edinburgh European Council summit on December 10-11, 1992, where it was stressed that “the issue of acquisition of national citizenship is decided exclusively by the Member State under its national law”. There are also other declarations which accompanied the Lisbon Treaty, without which, obviously, it would not come into force.

For Ukraine, the best solution would be a decision of such a declaration regarding the position of the Netherlands, and it could be a supplement to the Association Agreement, according to T. Anakina. “This is a political act that would have reduced the “degree of tension” in the parties’ dialogue and wouldn’t place on them any new obligations instead,” she said.

“In any case, there are Agreement sections between the EU and Ukraine about the exclusive competence of the EU, they refer to a full-scale and comprehensive free trade area, actually most interested in what our country is. Consequently, a future meeting of the EU Council has to put an end to the issue of the Association Agreement, and its result will not be a threat to progress achieved in the dialogue with the EU,” T.Anakina summarized.

Information Note. Parliamentary expert group on European integration was created on the initiative of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine on European Integration in June 2015. The project is funded by the International Renaissance Foundation. PEG examines the submitted to the Parliament bills on compliance with European law, monitors implementation of government plans for the implementation of the EU law’s acts, which allows to track the progress of bills to be developed for implementing the European integration commitments.

Contacts: Denis Chernikov, (067) 930 62 80

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