Ukraine: legal and institutional assistance

In 1999, in the TACIS project, managed by the IOWater/Verseau group, a working group of the Ukrainian Ministry of the Environment and Natural Resources started learning about water resource management at the level of river basins.

At the end of this training period, this group started the drafting of texts for the creation of a Commission for the South BUG basin, having a co-ordination and planning assignment for actions of common interest in the basin.

The results obtained in the Bug basin have been sufficiently conclusive to go further than the pilot experiment and start a redesign on a national scale. The Ministry thus initiated a reform of the legislative and institutional framework in force.

The current co-operation project, financed by the French Ministries for Foreign Affairs and of Ecology and Sustainable Development, deals with the 4 following actions:

  • transfer of legal and institutional know-how on integrated water resource management at the level of river basins, based on the European Framework Directive of 2000 and on the French Water Law,
  • assistance with the drafting of a water law adapted to the Ukrainian and international context as this country has 4 large transboundary rivers: Dniepr, Dniestr, Western Bug and Donets,
  • assistance with the creation of an executive body for the South Bug Commission, starting with the Environmental Fund, and preparation of the implementation in other basins, the Dniepr included,
  • drafting of documents preparing this body and defining its assignments and means, especially economic and financial means with the aim of controlling pollution and conserving water resources.
This approach shows the will of some Eastern Countries of having their water legislation changed and closer to the vision of the European Union regarding integrated water resource management. Ukraine, together with Russia, is one of the more advanced country in this field.