Deputy Head of the President’s Office discuss judicial reform with senior EU officials.

Deputy Head of the President’s Office Andriy Smyrnov discussed ways to resolve problematic issues in the implementation of judicial reform with high-ranking EU officials.

“During the discussion of the draft laws on the activities of the High Qualification Commission of Judges of Ukraine (HQCJ) and the High Council of Justice (HCJ), Andriy Smyrnov stressed that the main issue remains open - the principles of decision-making by competition commissions. In particular, by the competition commission for the selection of candidates for the position of a member of the HQCJ, the first composition of which must consist of three judges or retired judges nominated by the Council of Judges of Ukraine and three international experts nominated by international organizations with which Ukraine cooperates in preventing and combating corruption or implementing judicial reform,” the press service of the President’s Office informs.

The Deputy Head of the President’s Office stressed that the legislative settlement of the participation of international experts and their role in decision-making must be approached taking into account the experience already gained and the prospects for constitutional control of such legislative changes.

Smyrnov also called on international partners to discuss the proposal made during yesterday's meeting by President of the Venice Commission Gianni Buquicchio to include a seventh member in the competition commissions, who would be equidistant and independent of all public authorities and at the same time enjoy unquestioned trust and authority among other subjects of formation of competition commissions.

"In the rather complex and lengthy discussions with our international partners on the formula for decision-making by competition commissions with the participation of international experts, we are sure to find a fair balance in which the decisions adopted by competition commissions will inspire general confidence not only in the parties but also in society," the official noted.

The meeting was attended by Head of the EU Delegation to Ukraine Matti Maasikas, Deputy Director General of the Directorate for European Neighborhood and Enlargement Negotiations of the European Commission, Head of the Support Group of Ukraine at the European Commission Katarína Mathernová, Managing Director for Russia, Eastern Partnership, Central Asia, Regional Cooperation and the OSCE at the European External Action Service Michael Siebert, and the members of the Support Group of Ukraine at the European Commission.

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