EU expects fulfillment of conditions for SAPO, selection of judges to allocate EUR 1.5 bln of macro-financial tranche to Ukraine in Dec
The European Commission is currently completing an assessment of Ukraine's outstanding conditions that must be met by the end of the EU Macro-Financial Assistance + program in 2023, which will allow the final tranche of this assistance in the amount of EUR 1.5 billion to be issued in December, said Head of the Trade and Economic Section of the EU Delegation to Ukraine Alberto Fernandez-Diez.
It is noteworthy that the most important of them relate to the rule of law. Some examples are the strengthening of the SAPO (the Specialized Anti-Corruption Prosecutor's Office), as well as changes in the selection of judges in Ukraine, he said during the presentation of the pilot monitoring of Ukraine's implementation of IMF and EU programs by the RRR4U consortium in Kyiv.
As representatives of the consortium clarified, in the case of the selection of judges and the SAPO, we are talking about the adoption of bills approved at first reading on November 21, namely No. 10140-d with amendments to the law on the judicial system and status of judges and some legislative acts on improving the procedures for a judicial career and No. 10060 on increasing the institutional independence of the SAPO.
In addition, RRR4U pointed out, it is necessary to adopt bill No. 5420 on the criminalization of smuggling, which was approved at first reading in mid-July of this year.
We therefore view macro-financial assistance not only as a tool to help Ukraine cope with the balance of payments difficulties it faces, but also as a way of encouraging and stimulating reforms that have become more urgent since Ukraine became a candidate country last year, he said.
He emphasized that the same principle of linking funding to conditions will be implemented in the currently preparing Ukraine Facility program worth EUR50 million for 2024-2027, and these conditions will be recorded in the so-called Ukraine Plan, which is currently being discussed with a whole group of Ukrainian ministries.
The conditions that will be reflected in the plan, in essence and content, will not differ from what we already have in the field of macro-financial assistance... This will mark the beginning of a new era, so to speak, of “conditionality” on the part of Ukraine, which will closely is connected with the country’s accession to the EU, the official said.