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News

02 April 2020, 15:00

Draft energy bills: How to get a European Commission’s opinion

( Information Department of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine Secretariat )

The procedure for obtaining the European Commission’s conclusions on power-industry draft legislations

As the VRU Committee on Ukraine’s Integration into EU reports, all draft legislations as well legislative acts of the Cabinet of Ministers and other central executive authorities in the sphere of power industry will be subject to the European Commission’s expertise so as to check whether they are compliant with EU law and the Association Agreement (AA).

In June 2019, the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine ratified the updated Annex XXVII to the Association Agreement between the European Union and the European Atomic Energy Community and their Member States, of the one part, and Ukraine, of the other part, that commits Ukraine to do so. It is understood that once a bill goes against EU law, it will be deemed as non-compliant with Ukraine’s association agreement commitments.

 

  • The procedure for preliminary assessment of draft legislations submitted by MPs to the Verkhovna Rada/Cabinet of Ministers:

-      a committee secretariat informs the Government Office for Coordination of European and Euro-Atlantic Integration about registration of a bill;

-      the Government Office translates the bill into English and transfers it to the European Commission for pre-assessment;

-      the European Commission sends the pre-assessment results back to the committee secretariat;

-      the committee secretariat, if need be, makes proposals to the bill and files it for the first reading by the Verkhovna Rada.

 

  • The procedure for obtaining the European Commission’s legal opinions on draft legislations submitted by MPs to the Verkhovna Rada/Cabinet of Ministers:

-      a committee secretariat informs the Government Office for Coordination of European and Euro-Atlantic Integration about adoption of a bill;

-      the Government Office translates the bill into English and transfers it to the European Commission;

-      the European Commission sends its legal opinion back to the Government Office;

-      the Government Office transfers the legal opinion to the committee secretariat for taking it into account while drafting the bill for its second reading;

-      the committee secretariat transfers the legal opinion to the President’s Office for taking it into account while signing.

 

  • The pre-assessment procedure for acts of the Cabinet of Ministers:

-      a chief drafter of an act concurrently sends it (both Ukrainian and English versions) formally and electronically to the Government Office for Coordination of European and Euro-Atlantic Integration and to central executive authorities;

-      the Government Office then transfers the draft act to the European Commission for pre-assessment;

-      the European Commission sends the pre-assessment results back to the chief drafter;

-      the chief drafter, if need be, makes his proposals to the act.

 

  • The procedure for obtaining the European Commission’s legal opinions on the Cabinet of Ministers’ acts:

-      a chief drafter of an act sends its draft to the Government Office for Coordination of European and Euro-Atlantic Integration;

-      the Government Office sends the act to the European Commission;

-      the European Commission transfers its legal opinion back to the Government Office;

-      the Government Office, if need be, makes its proposals to the draft act and sends it to the Cabinet of Ministers for approval. 

 

  • The procedure for obtaining the European Commission’s legal opinions on draft legislations made by other central executive authorities and NKREKP and/or other central executive authorities linked to grid codes:

-      a chief drafter of an act sends its draft to the Government Office for Coordination of European and Euro-Atlantic Integration formally and electronically in both Ukrainian and English versions;

-      the Government Office transfers the act to the European Commission in order to get its legal opinion;

-      the European Commission sends its legal opinion back to the chief drafter for proper update and timely approval of the act at issue.

 

On 28 January, the EU-Ukraine Association Council adopted the Guidelines within the framework of Annex XXVII to the EU-Ukraine Association Agreement (AA). These guidelines, in fact, are hands-on instructions on how to reconcile Ukrainian draft legislations with EU energy law.

On 11 March, there was held a trilateral meeting where the parties agreed to elaborate the AA compliance-check procedure for Ukraine’s power-industry draft legislations. The meeting was attended by Ivanna Klympush-Tsyntsadze, Chairwoman of the Committee on Ukraine’s Integration into EU; Vadym Prystaiko, Deputy Prime Minister for European and Euro-Atlantic Integration of Ukraine; and Matti Maasikas, Ambassador of the European Union to Ukraine.