The Committee on Ukraine's Integration into the EU held a meeting with Vice Prime Minister for European and Euro-Atlantic Integration of Ukraine Olha Stefanishyna, the Director General of the Government Office for Coordination of European and Euro-Atlantic Integration of Ukraine and Chairmen of the Verkhovna Rada Subcommittees on European Integration. During the meeting, they discussed the outcomes and decisions of the European Council meeting on Ukraine, the implementation of the European Commission's recommendations contained in the EU Enlargement Policy Report and further government-parliamentary cooperation on the European integration path.

Ivanna Klympush-Tsintsadze, the Chair of the Committee on Ukraine's Integration into the EU, noted that given the historic decision to open negotiations with Ukraine, the Committee's interaction with the Government will intensify. "We are grateful to the Government Office for its constructive work, we always manage to come up with common solutions and look for rationality. This is a good example of cooperation. Obviously, we expect that the Committee's role will also be strengthened in the future," said Ivanna Klympush-Tsintsadze. She noted that this would require amendments to the Verkhovna Rada's regulations: "I would like to see us move from the pilot version in the Verkhovna Rada to amendments to the regulations. Because several times we have managed to stop negative decisions for European integration precisely because we could consider draft laws for the second reading. Then we made sure that the relevant committees took our comments into account."

Olha Stefanishyna, the Deputy Prime Minister for European and Euro-Atlantic Integration of Ukraine, noted that along with the decision to enlarge the EU, a package of sanctions against russia and a decision to provide €50 billion in aid to Ukraine were adopted. "The European Council has guaranteed this assistance and this decision will be considered as part of the EU's general budget on 1 February next year at the next European Council meeting. We expect that there will be a consensus. We are also counting on a decision on the last tranche of financial assistance, which will cover the financial needs for the beginning of the year, and this decision should be made in the coming days," the Deputy Prime Minister said.

According to her, Ukraine has now carried out self-screening. Moldova has started the same procedure. "Today we are talking about about 30% of the EU acquis to be implemented before accession. Regardless of the course of the negotiation process, every year we will be assessed as an enlargement country, every year we will have a report like the one presented this year on 8 November. Based on the results of such a report, the next steps in the negotiations will be proposed," the Deputy Prime Minister said.

The screening process, according to Olha Stefanishyna, can take about 8 months. "Based on the results of this year's report, we have more than 90 recommendations in various policy areas. Not only in the political block, in the rule of law block. We have divided these 90 recommendations into almost 160 different tasks and presented them in the form of an Action Plan," she said.

The Deputy Prime Minister for European and Euro-Atlantic Integration also thanked for parliamentary diplomacy: "I am grateful for the support of the decisions made by various political groups and the European Parliament itself. In such turbulent issues, it is very important that parliamentary diplomacy retains control over these decisions and keeps it in focus."

Ivanna Klympush-Tsintsadze, the Chair of the Committee on Ukraine's Integration into the EU, stressed that it is important to continue working together. And it is important that this work takes place in the format of parliament-government and civil society. She is also convinced that all possible formats of cooperation with the EU should be used, including the Parliamentary Association Committee. Given the new challenges, it is important to "revive" it and make it an effective tool for interaction.

 

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