In April, the formation of the new government resulted in the development of the new Action Program of the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine. According to its preamble, the Program was approved in pursuance of the EU–Ukraine Association Agreement and the Coalition Agreement. It will focus on completion of 17 specific tasks, including those in the field of environmental protection. As compared to previous governmental programs that failed to address environmental issues at all, it is a remarkable positive sign which means that the focus is put on the importance of the environment and its protection as a component of further strategic reforms in Ukraine.

The environmental management system reform and the integration of environmental policies into other sectoral policy areas will be strategic tasks in the field of environmental protection as defined by the Government in its Action Program. However, their further interpretation brings out a patchwork of various environmental issues, related not only to the environmental management system reform, but also to the protection of the environment and its individual components.

We repeatedly indicated the areas of and ways for reforming the environmental management system (back in 2014 and 2015 in particular), reflected in the current governmental program, but we would like to emphasize that in the current context, it is not the CMU Action Program that matters, but the operational plan of anti-crisis activities to be implemented by the end of 2016. The latter will show the extent to which the Government is committed to the environmental management system reform.