NATO-Ukraine Action Plan

  • 22 Nov. 2002 -
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  • Last updated: 02 Aug. 2012 11:04


This Action Plan was created pursuant to the decision of the NATO-Ukraine Commission to deepen and broaden the NATO-Ukraine relationship, and reflects Ukraine’s Strategy on Relations with the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO). It builds upon the Charter on a Distinctive Partnership, signed in Madrid on 9 July 1997, which remains the basic foundation of the NATO-Ukraine relationship.

The purpose of the Action Plan is to identify clearly Ukraine’s strategic objectives and priorities in pursuit of its aspirations towards full integration into Euro-Atlantic security structures and to provide a strategic framework for existing and future NATO-Ukraine cooperation under the Charter. In this context it will be periodically reviewed.

The Action Plan contains jointly agreed principles and objectives. To support these principles and objectives, Annual Target Plans (ATP) will be developed, as outlined in Section V, and will include specific measures for Ukrainian and NATO-Ukraine joint action, as appropriate.

Section I. Political and economic issues

1. Political and security

A. Internal Political issues

In pursuit of its goal of closer Euro-Atlantic integration, Ukraine will continue to pursue internal policies based on strengthening democracy and the rule of law, respect for human rights, the principle of separation of powers and judicial independence, democratic elections in accordance with Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) norms, political pluralism, freedom of speech and press, respect for the rights for national and ethnic minorities, and non-discrimination on political, religious or ethnic grounds. This will include ensuring the adaptation of all relevant legislation in pursuit of these policies.

In view of Ukraine’s foreign policy orientation towards European and Euro-Atlantic integration, including its stated long-term goal of NATO membership, Ukraine will continue to develop legislation based on universal principles of democracy and international law.

An important element in reforming the legal system is the participation in the conventions of the Council of Europe, which set up common standards for the European countries. Efforts are being aimed at reforming law enforcement bodies, improving mechanisms to ensure that all state and civil structures obey and adhere to the rule of law, strengthening the role of citizen’s rights protection bodies.


I.1.A.1 strengthen democratic and electoral institutions;
I.1.A.2 strengthen judicial authority and independence;
I.1.A.3 promote the continued development and strengthening of civil society, the rule of law, promoting fundamental human rights and freedoms of citizens;
I.1.A.4 ensure religious freedom;
I.1.A.5 ensure freedom of assembly;
I.1.A.6 complete administrative reform;
I.1.A.7 strengthen civilian and democratic control over the Armed Forces and the whole Security Sector;
I.1.A.8 fight corruption, money laundering and illegal economic activities, through economic, legal, organisational and law-enforcement measures; take the necessary steps to be removed from the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) non-compliance list, in particular by passing and implementing law that meets FATF standards;
I.1.A.9 ensure the balance of power between the three branches of power - legislative, executive and judiciary through constitutional and administrative reforms - and their effective cooperation.

B. Foreign and Security policy

Full integration into Euro-Atlantic security structures is Ukraine’s foreign policy priority and strategic goal. In this context, future internal developments will be based on decisions aimed at preparing Ukraine to achieve its goal of integration into Euro-Atlantic structures.
Ukraine and NATO share a common vision of a united and free Europe, and a determination to combat terrorism, the proliferation of Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD), regional instability and other security threats.
The interests of national security and the present international situation demand an essential deepening of relations between Ukraine and NATO.


I.1.B.1 update Ukraine’s foreign and security policy to reflect its goal of full Euro-Atlantic integration
I.1.B.2 reform State security structures to reflect the Euro-Atlantic Policy of Ukraine;
I.1.B.3 be a key contributor to regional stability and security, including enhancement of Ukraine’s contribution to the international cooperation on conflict settlement and peacekeeping;
I.1.B.4 sustain and enhance participation in appropriate Peacekeeping Operations;
I.1.B.5 fully observe international arms control obligations;
I.1.B.6 further develop civil-military relations;
I.1.B.7 enhance participation in the international fight against terrorism, including full implementation of all relevant United Nations Security Council resolutions and participation in measures foreseen in the Partnership Action Plan against Terrorism;
I.1.B.8 continue to take necessary internal measures to combat terrorism, including through strengthening border and export controls to combat the proliferation of WMD and their means of delivery and money laundering.

2. Economic issues


The principles of the consolidation of the market economy and OECD economic standards, the safeguarding of economic freedoms, stability and well-being through economic liberty, social justice and a responsible attitude towards the environment are crucial for the development of the Ukrainian economy.

In pursuit of its strategic goal of full integration into the Euro-Atlantic security structures, Ukraine is committed to adapting its internal legislation to Euro-Atlantic norms and practices.

Ukraine will continue to strive for sustainable economic growth and a substantial rise in general living standards.

A key element of Ukraine’s economic strategy is to ensure the economy's openness in conformity with World Trade Organisation’s (WTO) standards. This will promote the economic security of the state and ensure the closer coordination of domestic and foreign economic policies of the State.

Ukraine’s foreign economic priority is full integration into the world's economic space, and the deepening of its international economic cooperation.


I.2.1 promote sustained economic growth, including promotion of the structural transformation of the economy to maintain a stable growth of annual GDP, low inflation, real income growth and limited budget deficit;
I.2.2 introduce a moratorium for initiation of draft laws on tax concessions;
I.2.3 meet necessary conditions to enable accession to the WTO;
I.2.4 promote economic cooperation between Ukraine and NATO and Partner countries;
I.2.5 undertake reforms in Defence Economics, to further Ukraine’s goal of integration into Euro-Atlantic structures;
I.2.6 create an institutional environment that stimulates business activities, economic growth based on structural/innovative transformations, the establishment of modern social infrastructures and mechanisms of the social/market economy, while maintaining an adequate social safety net;
I.2.7 implement economic and structural reforms, taking into consideration recommendations of the World Bank, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and other international institutions, including actions to advance privatisation, combat corruption, and increase transparency in government procurement;
I.2.8 enhance the process of land reform;
I.2.9 guarantee the economic rights and freedoms of citizens in all forms, inter alia, by strengthening the protection of intellectual property rights;
I.2.10 create the necessary preconditions for the establishment of a middle class;
I.2.11 limit the gap in real incomes between high and low income population, and strive towards the elimination of poverty;
I.2.12 improve security of its energy supply.

3. Information issues


The principles of freedom of speech and press, and the free flow of information are cornerstones for the establishment of a democratic state and a society governed by the rule of law. Provisions in the Ukrainian constitution on freedom of speech and information conform to Article 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, and Article 10 of the Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms.

Ukraine supports Resolution 59 (1) of the UN General Assembly, which states that freedom of information is a basic human right and a criteria for all other freedoms.

Although relevant legislation contains important provisions for the freedom of speech and information, Ukraine is committed to improving the general and legal environment in which the media operate, and to reinforcing freedom of expression and the unimpeded activities of mass media. On this matter, Ukraine's close cooperation with relevant international organisations, in particular the Council of Europe and the OSCE is essential.


I.3.1 Improve and ensure the implementation of guarantees to the freedom of thought and speech, freedom of the press, free expression of opinions and convictions, and access to information;
I.3.2 ensure the free gathering, publication and broadcast of information by the media;
I.3.3 implement relevant legislation on eliminating obstacles to activities of the media;
I.3.4 further NATO-Ukraine cooperation on information issues, including the Parliamentary dimension;
I.3.5 improve public understanding of NATO through NATO-Ukraine cooperation in the field of information, including through cooperation with the NATO Information and Documentation Centre (NIDC).

Section II. Security, defence and military issues

A. Defence and Security Sector Reform


Ukraine remains committed to carrying forward its defence and security sector reforms with the aim of restructuring and reorganising its national defence and security establishment into a democratically controlled and effective organisation able to ensure its sovereignty and territorial integrity and to contribute to peace and stability in the Euro-Atlantic area.

In taking forward these defence and security sector reforms, Ukraine seeks to adapt its structures and missions to the changing nature of security risks in the Euro-Atlantic area, to shift from the principle of "territorial circular defence of the country", and to build on the need to support both the military and non-military aspects of crisis management.

While reform efforts focused on the armed forces will continue to be a high priority, in the context of the new security risks, Ukraine is seeking to make better use of forces and means currently under the State Committee on Border Guards, the Ministry of Interior and the Ministry of Emergencies. Reform of other security forces, such as the Border Guards, will strengthen Ukraine’s capabilities in preventing the illegal trafficking of drugs, radioactive and other banned substances, dual use technologies and human beings, as well as in fighting cross-border crime.

Ukraine will seek to complement its defence reforms with programs to address the consequences and problems of defence reform, such as assistance programmes for retired and redundant personnel, base closures, safe disposal of obsolete and surplus munitions and military equipment, conversion of defence industries, and cleaning up environmental degradation.

The armed forces of Ukraine will have to undergo a thorough enhancement of their defence infrastructure, forces and capabilities to meet the challenge of the new collective security system and new ways of conducting military operations. This work should be based on a thorough restructuring of the defence industrial complex, to ensure that it is fully able to meet the challenges of a market economy and open competition, both on internal and international markets.


II.A.1 reorganise the Armed Forces of Ukraine into a well-trained, well-equipped, more mobile and modern armed force able to cope with the challenges of security risks, to protect the territory of the State and to contribute to peacekeeping and humanitarian missions under the auspices of international organisations;
II.A.2 strengthen civil control of the Armed Forces of Ukraine and other security forces, including enhanced cooperation and oversight of Parliament and increased participation of civilians in decision-making related to security issues;
II.A.3 strengthen state structures to better reflect challenges highlighted by non-military and asymmetrical threats;
II.A.4 strengthen state interagency coordination among the MOD, Ministry of Industrial Policy, the Border Guards, the Ministry of Emergencies, and the Ministry of Interior to better respond to consequence of man-made and natural disasters, including terrorists attacks.

B. Cooperation with NATO


In the context of both defence reform and adapting to new security threats, NATO-Ukraine cooperation in the area of defence reform, defence-related areas and military cooperation are essential.

Cooperation with NATO in the military sphere is regarded as an important element of the overall NATO-Ukraine partnership. Military cooperation translates military aspects of overall political goals and planning targets into military cooperation activities for their implementation.

In this context, Ukraine will make maximum use of its civil and military cooperation programmes with NATO and NATO Allies to achieve these goals, in particular the Joint Working Group on Defence Reform (JWGDR), which is the focal point for NATO-Ukraine defence and security sector cooperation. The Planning and Review Process (PARP), and cooperation programs in armaments, air defence and airspace management, defence research and technologies, science, civil emergency planning, logistics and standardisation, as well as military cooperation also will be essential tools for reform and cooperation. While the work done in the JWGDR sets the priorities for defence reform, cooperation in defence-related areas promotes interoperability with NATO and increases Ukraine’s overall ability to be a key player in regional security.

Reform efforts and military cooperation also support Ukraine’s strategic goal of Euro-Atlantic integration by gradually adopting NATO standards and practices, and enhancing interoperability between the armed forces of Ukraine and NATO forces, in particular through the implementation of Partnership Goals and participation in NATO-led crisis response operations.


II.B.1 making maximum use of the JWGDR, increase the impact and co-ordination of Ukraine’s cooperation in operational, PfP, and bilateral contexts on supporting implementation of National Defence Reform Objectives and Partnership Goals;
II.B.2 ensure that NATO-Ukraine military cooperation continues to support Ukraine’s goal to develop the ability of its Armed Forces to support the implementation of defence reform plans;
II.B.3 increase Ukraine’s contribution to NATO-led peacekeeping operations in the Balkans and measures by Allies in the fight against terrorism;
II.B.4 develop the full interoperability, sustainability and mission effectiveness of the Armed Forces through effective implementation of Partnership Goals;
II.B.5 improve the professional expertise of Ukrainian civilian and military cadres;
II.B.6 continue to develop and support cooperative agreements between NATO and Ukraine, such as the Memoranda of Understanding on Host Nation Support (HNS) and Strategic Lift, and ensure their full implementation;
II.B.7 maintain the readiness of Rapid Reaction Force units for participation in joint operations with NATO, and training of these units to meet NATO standards;
II.B.8 achieve a required level of compatibility for the actual and future armaments and military equipment and doctrine of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, which allows to have minimum interoperability in order to conduct, on a case-by-case basis, tasks of common interest with NATO, and adapt/adjust acquisition and related practices to those of NATO Allies;
II.B.9 consolidate Ukraine’s role as a key player in regional responses to natural disasters and civil emergencies; support Ukraine in improving its national integrated system of civil emergency planning and disaster response; promote interoperability in the organisation and procedures of disaster response operations, including through Euro-Atlantic Disaster Response Coordination Centre (EADRCC) mechanisms;
II.B.10 improve the system of Ukraine’s air traffic management, including the functioning of air traffic services, to better react to a possible terrorist threat;
II.B.11 mitigate the damage related to the pollution of the environment as a result of conducting large-scale military exercises, including international ones, and testing armaments and military equipment, as well as pollution related to the stockpiling and destruction of chemical agents, explosives, anti-personnel land mines, surplus small arms and light weapons and unsafe munitions;
II.B.12 develop interoperability between Ukraine and NATO communication and information systems;
II.B.13 develop international collaboration between scientists from Ukraine, NATO and Partner countries and develop scientific and technological cooperation within the Science Programme.

C. Resource implications


Defence reforms will also have significant resource implications. Thus, Ukraine needs to implement resource management systems, which follow NATO methodology and draw on international experience in defence budgets.

Ukraine attaches primary importance to cooperation in areas oriented towards the achievement of concrete practical results and that serve Ukrainian national interests and which will support defence reforms in Ukraine.


II.C.1 increase transparency in defence planning and budgeting procedures; transition to modern NATO defence programming, budgeting and financing principles;
II.C.2 reform financial planning and funding procedures in support of defence reform and the transformation of the Armed Forces into a professional force;
II.C.3 train personnel in resource management, budgeting and defence finance issues;
II.C.4 restructure production, procurement, financing and tendering processes in the Defence Industrial Complex, to reflect Ukraine’s Euro-Atlantic orientation and goal of becoming a fully functioning market economy. This will include adaptation to NATO standards in the Defence Industrial Complex.

Section III. Information protection and security


Ukraine is committed to developing and harmonising its national system of protection of classified information according to NATO criteria and standards.

Access to and protection of classified information is based on NATO requirements and Ukrainian national legislation, in particular the Security Agreement between the Government of Ukraine and NATO signed on 13 March 1995, ratified by the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine on 12 September 2002.

Ukraine is committed to the routine exchange of relevant classified information with NATO as a prerequisite for deepened NATO-Ukraine cooperation.


III.1 fully implement the Security Agreement between the Government of Ukraine and NATO, in particular approve and implement the “Guidelines for the Management and Protection of NATO classified information”;
III.2 improve the system of mutual protection of classified information, including the activities of the Centre for registration of classified NATO documents;
III.3 establish arrangements with NATO that will allow for the exchange of classified information with NATO on military planning and reform;
III.4 upgrade state telecommunication and information systems where NATO classified information may pass, in accordance with NATO requirements and standards;
III.5 develop and implement training programs for personnel in different areas of information security.

Section IV. Legal issues


Ukraine remains committed to reviewing existing domestic legislation and regulations with a view to determining compatibility with NATO rules and regulations.


IV.1 review laws, regulations, and international agreements to simplify assistance by NATO or its Member States for all NATO-Ukraine cooperation activities, both in the governmental and non-governmental sector;
IV.2 ensure full implementation of NATO-Ukraine agreements including NATO-Ukraine Security Agreement, SOFA, MOU on Host Nation Support and planned MOU on Strategic Airlift;
IV.3 improve legislation pertaining to defence-related industrial production in Ukraine with a view to approaching NATO legal requirements/standards (property rights, protection of classified information, state guaranties for producers and contractors, conditions for foreign investment in the defence industrial complex, project finance, export control legislation and process);
IV.4 creation of a legal and organisational basis of NATO-Ukraine cooperation in the area of Armaments, Defence Research and Technologies.

Section V. Mechanisms of implementation

Ukraine will present annually its draft Annual Target Plan (ATP) for achieving the principles and objectives of the Action Plan.

Within the framework of the NATO-Ukraine Commission (NUC), NATO member states will provide advice on the proposed specific measures and timelines, and the NUC will agree any joint NATO-Ukraine actions. Ukraine will then approve its ATP at the highest level, which will include joint NATO-Ukraine activities agreed by the NUC and activities Ukraine will undertake on its own.

The annual plans and programmes of all existing and new Joint Working Groups, in particular the Joint Working Group on Defence Reform (JWGDR), the Work Plan of the Military Committee with the participation of Ukraine, as well as all working plans and programs of all relevant NATO-Ukraine joint working bodies/groups, will continue to provide a framework and indispensable building blocks for NATO-Ukraine Cooperation with a view to furthering the achievement of individual objectives and benchmarks.

Ukraine will make full use of existing NUC and PfP mechanisms to support implementation of the objectives set out in the Action Plan. While the burden will fall primarily on Ukraine, NATO member states will continue to support reforms by providing assistance and by sharing their own assessment and experiences.

The NUC will review on an annual basis progress in achieving the objectives in the Action Plan, including through implementation of joint NATO-Ukraine activities and the activities Ukraine has undertaken on its own in the ATP. A Progress Report will be prepared by the IS/IMS, open to comments from Nations and Ukraine. There will be semi-annual and annual assessment meetings of joint PC/PMSC in NUC format prior to the annual submission of the draft Progress Report to NUC Ambassadors for notation. The report will then be submitted to NUC Foreign Ministers for notation.