Ukraine gained independence after the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991. Following a series of demonstrations in late 2013, an uprising and early elections in 2014 put Ukraine on the path away from Russia’s orbit and towards a European future – a path that requires major social, economic and political reforms.
WFD’s work is helping the parliament to strengthen its role in scrutinising government, improving accountability for legislative and financial matters, and making society more inclusive of women and underrepresented groups.
By making the parliament more accountable to Ukranian citizens, WFD will help ensure there is robust scrutiny of government policy and performance. This accountability will be boosted by helping the parliament to set up better internal oversight practices, enhancing the independent budget committee’s ability to provide greater oversight over how public funds are spent and ensuring that new financial and economic legislation is introduced in line with international best practice.
WFD is paving the way to support the parliament in introducing new mechanisms to review laws to ensure they are working as intended (a practice known as post-legislative scrutiny). WFD will work with many different sections of the parliament and engage staff on relevant committees and the parliament’s lawyers to support introducing these new ways of working.
Gender equality is mainstreamed across all of our activities, with a particular focus on ensuring women, people with disabilities and other vulnerable groups have greater and equal access to formal and informal ways to participate in politics. To help achieve this aim, the programme will implement a series of workshops and training, with a particular focus on how public spending can lead to a gender pay gap if funds are not appropriately allocated.
The programme is funded by DFID and will run until March 2021.
In partnership with GIZ Ukraine, WFD helped establish a Financial and Economic Analysis Office (FEAO) in the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine (parliament) in 2015, in order to provide the parliament with accessible economic and financial information and help it monitor public spending.
The FEAO supports the reform process in Ukraine by helping the Verkhovna Rada to oversee the actions of the executive by reviewing the use of public funds and providing independent financial and economic research and analysis. This supports the parliament in its role as an effective safeguard for service delivery for Ukrainian citizens and helps ensure that international standards for financial oversight are applied throughout the parliament’s operations, particularly when drafting bills or amending legislation.
WFD worked in partnership with parliamentary officials, committees and parliamentarians from across political factions, giving them the technical and political support which was needed to make progress on the European Parliament’s roadmap on internal reform.
- The FEAO continues to function effectively with a highly qualified office of 12 people, and supports the parliament by providing valuable oversight and information;
- The FEAO completed 300 research studies and analysis; 156 analyses upon the parliamentary committees’ requests, and 13 analyses relating to EU acquis legislative compliance for the Verkhovna Rada.
All products developed by the FEAO experts are available on the FEAO website.
The programme ended in May 2019. While a parliamentary decree was issued in June 2019 confirming the Parliament’s decision to integrate the FEAO’s expertise and structure into the parliament through the Institute of Legislation, the move has been delayed due to parliamentary elections in July 2019. Despite the challenges, WFD’s continues to engage with the parliament regarding formally integrating the FEAO into its structure.
Sponsored by the British Embassy in Kyiv, WFD directly shares British democratic experience with the parliament through our MP’s Partnership Scheme, enhancing relations between members of the Verkhovna Rada and Westminster.
Ukraine required the rapid introduction of new emergency legislation and regulation to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic. Many new laws have been enacted in first months of the pandemic spread in different areas. Due to the necessary speed of the legislative process, there was not much time to scrutinise and analyse draft laws. This means there is a risk that the laws may not do what legislators intended them to do. What is more, Government decisions of the use of public funds related to COVID-19 have been challenged.
WFD is supporting members of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine (VRU) to enhance its post-legislative scrutiny practices. Post-legislative scrutiny is the practice of assessing the effectiveness and impact of laws. With WFD support, the VRU will review and assess COVID-19 emergency legislation, make recommendations for improvements, and document lessons learned to help them design better policies and laws in future emergencies.