Wednesday, 20 March 2019
European and Atlantic Integration
Media key category: International

At present mutual relations of issues for protection of environment and safety is an unconditional component of sustainable development of this country. Such interconnection causes the necessity of cooperation of organizations, which deal with safety problems, with all countries of Europe and the world. In this context Ukraine having properly determined its direction towards European and Euro-Atlantic integration actively cooperates with NATO.  

In March 1992 Ukraine became the member of North Atlantic Cooperation Council (NACC). In 1997 Ukraine becomes the co-founder and participant of NACC successor – Council for Euro-Atlantic Partnership (CEAP) that currently combines 26 countries-members of NATO and 20 countries-partners.

Ukraine passed the way from Charter on Special Partnership signed on 09.07.1997 in Madrid, through Action Plan approved on 22.11.2002 in Prague, under which the annual Ukraine-NATO Target Plan is being implemented, to the Intensified Dialogue with NATO for Membership and Respective Reforms, which was initiated on 21.04.2005 in Vilnius. The process of the Intensified Dialogue launched in response to the decisions of the Madrid NATO Summit of 1997 is proposed to the countries, which expressed the interest to become members of the Organisation and it is the first stage of official process of preparation of countries-candidates for NATO membership. 

So far five Target Plans (2003-2007) were implemented. The 2007 Target Plan (adopted by the Decree of the President of Ukraine # 535 of 18.06.07) contained 278 activities. Overall, of 278 activities of the 2007 Target Plan 204 of them were implemented in full, 57 – implemented partially, 12 – not implemented. The deadline of 5 activities was postponed for the current year. Thus, for the reporting period 73,3 % of the activities of the 2007 Target Plan were implemented in full.

Taking into consideration the experience gained in the past and previous years the Government of Ukraine has been focusing the efforts of executive authorities in 2008 on proper implementation of the activities of 2008 Target Plan and on closer cooperation with the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation to implement the Euro-Atlantic intentions of this country.

Since April 1999 under the provisions of the Charter the format of relations was transformed into the joint forum –Ukraine-NATO Commission (UNC). In addition to this consultative mechanism of cooperation Ukraine utilizes also such mechanisms as Ukraine-NATO joint working groups for military reform, armament, economic safety, planning in case of emergencies, for the issues of science and protection of environment as well as regular Ukraine-NATO meetings at the level of political and military steering, economic and special committees. 

The Ministry of Ecology and Natural Resources of Ukraine cooperates with the Ministry of Education and Science of Ukraine under Ukraine-NATO Joint Working Group for Science and Environment.

The VIII meeting of Ukraine-NATO Joint Working Group for Science and Environment took place on 24 October 2008 in the premises of the Ministry of Education and Science of Ukraine.

The Ministry of Ecology and Natural Resources of Ukraine takes part in implementation of activities envisaged by Ukraine-NATO Target Plan for 2008 under Ukraine-NATO Action Plan. At present the MENR coordinated the Ukraine-NATO Target Plan for 2009.

Additionally cooperation of Ukraine with North Atlantic Treaty Organisation takes place under Individual Programme for Partnership between Ukraine and NATO (IPP).This Programme consists of activities of international cooperation proposed by member-states and countries-partners of the Organisation in the format of Working Plan of Euro-Atlantic Partnership.

The Working Plan of Euro-Atlantic Partnership contains a wide list of training courses, seminars, conferences, symposiums, working meetings, meetings of NATO committees.

The MENR, under its competence, takes an active part in cooperation with NATO within IPP.

The other dimension of cooperation of the Ministry of Ecology and Natural Resources of Ukraine and NATO is participation of Ukraine in the „Environment and Safety” Initiative (ENVSEC) that was set up on the basis of Memorandum of Understanding signed between UNEP, UNDP and OECD of 14 November 2003. In 2006 UN EEC and Regional Centre for Environment for Central and Eastern Europe also became the ENVSEC members. NATO is an associated member of the Initiative since 2004. 

The main purpose of the Initiative is to assist the countries in determining and addressing the issues of stability and safety arisen due to environment issues. The other purpose is to improve general mutual understanding through strengthening of dialogue and cooperation for ecological issues.
On 26 February 2008 the Workshop “Environment of Ukraine: Issues, Policy and Actions” was conducted in the MENR premises; during this Workshop “Environment and Safety. Transformation of Risk into Belarus-Moldova-Ukraine Cooperation” Report was officially presented. Managers of regional environment protection departments, representatives of the UN European Economic Commission (UN EEC), UN Environment Programme (UNEP), Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE), UN Development Programme (UNDP), other international organizations and non-governmental organizations took part in the Workshop. 

The Report of “Environment and Safety” Initiative (ENVSEC) emphasizes importance to use mutual links between the issues of environment and safety both for environment protection and for strengthening of stability and neighbourhood relations. ENVSEC assessment includes a systemic analysis of interlinks between environment and safety in Belarus, Moldova and Ukraine; it contains review of challenges in the area of management of cross-boundary waters and ecological systems, in the area of hazardous waste treatment and minimization of consequences of military activity in the past, in the area of usage of energy resources and long-lasting conflict in Pridnistrovya. The Report highlighted also the activities proposed by ENVSEC countries and partners for further analysis and mitigation of risk. Implementation of certain activities has already started. The Report was produced under close cooperation between experts and institutions of Ukraine, Moldova and Belarus involving the partners from ENVSEC.

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