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Component 3. Harmonization of Environmental Legislation.

The PDF-B Project Objective 3 involves the preparation of project proposal designed to monitor legislative changes in the three countries and review existing legislative framework in order to identify harmonization priorities. Currently the reports of Ukrainian and Belarus experts are represented on the Program website (sorry, the reports are available in Russian only).

The Agreement on Cooperation in the Field of Use and Protection of the Dnipro Basin and the Strategic Action Programme for the Dnipro Basin (SAP) specifically state that the countries will “Harmonise the environmental legislation of the riparian countries of the Dnipro Basin with that of the EU”. The takes on special significance for two reasons:

·         The Dnipro River has a significant impact on the condition of the near-shore water and ecosystem of the western section of the Black Sea adjoining the two countries Romania and Bulgaria. Both countries have became EU member states from the beginning of 2007.

·         The Ukraine has stated that it would like to become an “associated member” of the EU in the near future and hopes to submit an application for full membership at some stage. This would then require modifying national legislation to match the legislation of EU.

In addition, the Republic of Belarus and the Russian Federation are also interested in bringing national legislation in line with the EU, particularly where it might be useful in supporting the process of reformation.

This project proposal will include a budget estimate and stepwise harmonization plan. It is important to note that harmonization effort has two dimensions, one of them being the harmonization of environmental legislation of the three countries with the EU legislation (i.e. ‘external’ harmonisation), and the other one relating to the ‘internal basinwide’ harmonisation to ensure the compatibility of environmental legislation adopted in the Republic of Belarus, Russian Federation and Ukraine (unless the ‘internal’ harmonization comes in contradiction with the EU convergence).

The UNIDO contribution to the SAP process involved the review of the national environmental legislation and development of recommendations on harmonizing the environmental legislation of the Dnipro Basin countries with the EU environmental laws. On the basis of the above documents, the national experts under the PMU coordination will prepare a project proposal for monitoring the legislative changes and reviewing the existing legislation in order to ensure better focus of harmonisation efforts.

There is a strong national commitment that has already led to the initiation of legislative change in the three countries. The Full-Sized Project will support the process through monitoring and reporting on change, leaving the implementation of the harmonisation program to national institutions that have already shown they have the resources to deal with these issues.

Given that environmental policy and laws in the three Dnipro countries have evolved from a common heritage, the needs for legislative changes in one country are likely to be reflected in the other two countries. In UNDP and GEF view, the immediate benefits from monitoring and information transfer among the three countries with respect to legal changes and harmonization efforts taken by any of them will be significant.

The objective of work, as specified by the present Terms of Reference (ToR), is to prepare a project proposal designed to support the harmonisation process through its two components:

Component 1.         Preparing a Programme of Harmonisation. To prepare a draft Programme of Harmonisation identifying timeframes and costs associated with priority harmonisation steps, both internal and external, which will eventually result in the coherent environmental legislation of the Dnipro Basin countries, harmonized with the relevant EU laws. It is expected that the Harmonisation Programme will be included into the Full-Sized Project Proposal (FPP), to be financed from the national sources.

Component 2.         Monitoring and Reporting on Legislative Changes and Harmonisation. To prepare a draft Programme of Monitoring and Reporting on Legislative Changes and Harmonisation for inclusion into the FPP, to be financed by GEF and other international donor agencies.

Harmonization of Environmental Legislation. Monitoring of Legislative Changes. Ukraine. (in Russian only)

Harmonization of Environmental Legislation. Belarus. (in Russian only)

Monitoring of Legislative Changes. Belarus. (in Russian only)

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