War is not an obstacle for Ukraine to fulfill its obligations in the field of anti-corruption as a member of the Council of Europe, Oleksandr Novikov after the GRECO meeting

War is not an obstacle for Ukraine to fulfill its obligations in the field of anti-corruption as a member of the Council of Europe, Oleksandr Novikov after the GRECO meeting
During the 93rd plenary meeting of the Group of States against Corruption (GRECO), which is taking place these days in Strasbourg, GRECO confirmed that Ukraine is showing steady progress in implementing recommendations in the fight against corruption. The Ukrainian delegation to GRECO is headed by the Head of the National Agency on Corruption Prevention (NACP) Oleksandr Novikov. At the meeting, a report was agreed and approved on Ukraine's implementation of GRECO's recommendations in matters of corruption prevention in relation to MPs', judges and prosecutors. In particular, it was noted that over the past year, our state has made progress in implementing 6 more recommendations. They are considered fully implemented in addition to the 9 recommendations implemented by Ukraine in the previous period. The state of implementation of GRECO's recommendations will be taken into account by the European Commission during the assessment of Ukraine's progress in achieving the criteria for membership in the European Union. Among the key achievements were highlighted:
  • improvement of regulation on issues of conflict of interests of MPs' in connection with restrictions on their employment in business activities;
  • implementation of effective mechanisms for raising awareness of issues of integrity among MPs';
  • guaranteeing the safety of judges;
  • development and submission to the Parliament of the draft code of ethics for MPs' (at the end of last year, the relevant parliamentary draft law #8327 was already registered in the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine);
  • settlement of issues of career advancement in the prosecutor's office.
Also, during the approval of the report, it was emphasized the importance of completing the formation of the High Qualification Commission of Judges by the High Council of Justice . The head of the NACP noted that the completion of the formation of the High Qualification Commission of Judges will facilitate the process of positive evaluation of several more GRECO recommendations. According to him, this should positively affect the process of Ukraine's accession to the European Union and the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), since GRECO reports are a significant indicator of the state's anti-corruption achievements. For Ukraine, this is especially important in the context of the trust of international partners and donors, who focus on the state of anti-corruption in Ukraine.
"Despite all the efforts of the terrorist state to stop us on our way to the EU, Ukraine demonstrates significant achievements in building a virtuous government and a just society. Our partners, the Council of Europe, recognize and confirm this progress. The Anti-Corruption Strategy for 2021-2025, adopted by the Parliament, and the Program for its implementation, approved by the Government, almost completely cover the list of GRECO recommendations that still need to be implemented by April 2024, when the next evaluation will take place within the framework of the current monitoring round. The independence of the judiciary, the law on lobbying and the approval of the code of ethics for people's elected representatives are not only a requirement of the Council of Europe, but also meet the key demand of our society for justice. The NACP will coordinate the fulfillment of these requirements", -  stressed Oleksandr Novikov.
The Head of the NACP emphasized the importance of unity among European countries in matters of support for Ukraine.
"The Russian war against our common European values is a war of autocracies against democracies, which resulted from the corruption of the Russian state and its society. That is why the integrity, especially of the defense forces of Ukraine, is the key to our victory in the battle for democracy and freedom in the whole world", -  said the Head of the NACP.
Ukraine is a permanent member of GRECO. The Group of States against Corruption is the main and only anti-corruption monitoring body of the Council of Europe. It unites 49 member states. Interim report of the 4th round of evaluation of Ukraine's achievements: https://cutt.ly/B4Y1kwU 
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