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Ukraine

Establishing Rules on Processing Official Information (UA0035)

Overview

At-a-Glance

Action Plan: Not Attached

Action Plan Cycle: 2014

Status: Inactive

Institutions

Lead Institution: State Archive Service

Support Institution(s): Ministry of Justice, Ministry of Internal Affairs, Ministry of Defence, Security Service, Administration of the State Service for Special Communications and Information Protection, State Committee on TV and Radio Broadcasting, Ministry of Finance, Ministry of Economic Development, Service of Foreign Intelligence, unspecified NGOs and international organisations

Policy Areas

E-Government, Legislation & Regulation, Records Management, Right to Information

IRM Review

IRM Report: Ukraine End-of-Term Report 2014-2016

Starred: No

Early Results: Major Major

Design i

Verifiable: Yes

Relevant to OGP Values: Access to Information

Potential Impact:

Implementation i

Completion:

Description

Ensuring citizens’ unhindered access to public information by means of: preparing and submitting to the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine in due course a draft resolution on approval of the procedure for recording, storing and using documents and other physical information media containing official information collected during operational and detective, counterintelligence activities, in the field of national defence of the country Expected result: a relevant resolution adopted by the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine Lead institution: State Archive Service Supporting institution(s): Ministry of Justice, Ministry of Internal Affairs, Ministry of Defence, Security Service, Administration of the State Service for Special Communications and Information Protection, State Committee on TV and Radio Broadcasting, Ministry of Finance, Ministry of Economic Development, Service of Foreign Intelligence, unspecified NGOs and international organisations Start date: Not specified End date: 31 January 2015

IRM End of Term Status Summary

5.1. Establishing rules on processing official information

Commitment Text: 5.1. Ensuring citizens’ unhindered access to public information by means of: preparing and submitting to the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine in due course a draft resolution on approval of the procedure for recording, storing and using documents and other physical information media containing official information collected during operational and detective, counterintelligence activities, in the field of national defence of the country.

Expected result: a relevant resolution adopted by the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine.

Responsible institution(s): State Archive Service

Supporting institutions(s): Ministry of Justice, Ministry of Internal Affairs, Ministry of Defence, Security Service, Administration of the State Service for Special Communications and Information Protection, State Committee on TV and Radio Broadcasting, Ministry of Finance, Ministry of Economic Development, Service of Foreign Intelligence, unspecified NGOs and international organisations.

Start date: Not specified                                                                     End date: 31 January 2015

Commitment aim

This commitment attempted to improve public access to government-held information, to establish a more transparent process for handling of official information, and to reduce unjustified denials of information requests. This was to be done by improving transparency of the regulations, and transposing the progressive provisions of the Access to Public Information Law to the bylaws.

Status

Midterm: Substantial

The 2011 Law of Ukraine on Access to Public Information revised the legal framework concerning access to information held by public authorities. In particular, the law introduced a new classification of information with restricted access, including “official information.” In March 2014, Parliament instructed the government to adopt regulations referred to in the OGP commitment by mid-October 2014.[Note 10: See text of the law at: http://bit.ly/1Vrnx6S.] The State Archive Service prepared several versions of the text and published them for public consultations, as well as discussed them with the ombudsman office. Both civil society and the ombudsman office criticised the draft texts, as they did not fully align with the Law on Access to Public Information. As a result, the government failed to adopt the regulations.[Note 11: Independent Reporting Mechanism (IRM) Progress Report 2014-15: Ukraine, 31-32. ]

End of term: Complete

After rejecting several versions of the draft regulations, the government finally adopted the document on 19 October 2016.[Note 12: See text of the regulations at: http://bit.ly/2ily5va. ] The document was approved in the form of a model procedure for recording, storing, and using documents and other physical information media containing official information. This makes it recommendatory by nature. Such an approach reflects the 2011 Law on Information that removed authorisation for the government to pass binding regulations in this regard.[Note 13: Independent Reporting Mechanism (IRM) Progress Report 2014-15: Ukraine, 31. ] The final text of the regulations addressed the criticism of the previous drafts raised by civil society and the ombudsman, by incorporating the harm and public interest tests[Note 14: Harm and public interest tests are used to establish whether disclosure of the requested information will harm any protected interest and, if so, whether such harm outweighs the public interest in the disclosure.] for situations in which access to information is restricted.

Did it open government?

Access to information: Major

Government regulation (“Instructions”) on official information is an important, albeit technical, document that regulates, in detail, how public agencies deal with “official information” (a type of information with restricted access). In the Ukrainian context, public agencies closely follow such regulations, paying close attention to changes. It was essential, therefore, that the regulations were in line with the law, and reflected the progressive provisions of the 2011 Law on Access to Public Information.

After several failed attempts, the final regulations did incorporate important provisions of the 2011 Law on Access to Public Information. In particular, it included the rules on denying or restricting access to requested information; the law requires public authorities to apply public interest and harm tests. The authority that holds information is required to justify any access restriction with legitimate reasons, including the substantial harm that may be caused by disclosure. It also must prove that such harm outweighs the public interest in disclosure. This requirement was embedded in the rules on the  treatment of official information.

However, unlike the previous legislation, the revised 2011 Law on Information and Law on Access to Public Information did not authorise the government to issue mandatory rules for processing official information. Therefore, the final “government instructions” document must be considered a non-binding, recommendatory set of rules. This reduced its importance to some extent, but not significantly, as public authorities’ de facto practice is to follow such recommendations and implement them in their own regulations. It is important that the government model rules are enforced through the internal regulations of the relevant authorities. Therefore, the “government instructions” enhance the level of public access to official government-held information. The rules lay the groundwork for improved implementation of the 2011 Law on Access to Public Information. It does so by defining the rules for managing public information and, more importantly, requiring public and harm tests before denying a public information request.

Carried forward?

The commitment was completed, and was not carried over to the new action plan.


Commitments

  1. Infrastructure Data Portal

    UA0070, 2018, E-Government

  2. Open Standard for e-System

    UA0071, 2018, E-Government

  3. Ensuring Openness and Transparency of Selling Public Assets and Property

    UA0072, 2018, E-Government

  4. Transparency in Public Procurement (Prozorro)

    UA0073, 2018, E-Government

  5. Awarenss Raising About Social and Economic Development

    UA0074, 2018, Aid

  6. e-Calls for Proposals to Support CSOs

    UA0075, 2018, Civic Space

  7. Beneficial Ownership Registry

    UA0076, 2018, Beneficial Ownership

  8. Anti-Corruption Training

    UA0077, 2018, Anti-Corruption Institutions

  9. Publishing Environmental Information

    UA0078, 2018, E-Government

  10. Database of Natural Resources

    UA0079, 2018, E-Government

  11. Interactive Map of Mines

    UA0080, 2018, E-Government

  12. Priority Electronic Services

    UA0081, 2018, Citizenship and Immigration

  13. Online Platform for Executive Bodies and CSOs

    UA0082, 2018, Civic Space

  14. EITI Online Data

    UA0083, 2018, E-Government

  15. Electronic Resources for Education

    UA0084, 2018, E-Government

  16. Online Verification of Education Certificates

    UA0085, 2018, E-Government

  17. Free Access to National Repository for Academic Texts

    UA0086, 2018, E-Government

  18. Administrative Service Decentrilisation and Improvement

    UA0057, 2016, Capacity Building

  19. United State Portal Extension; Electronic Government Information Services Unification; Modern Tools for Electronic Identification

    UA0058, 2016, Capacity Building

  20. System for Entities Performing Government Functions

    UA0059, 2016, Capacity Building

  21. Free Urban Planning Documentation

    UA0060, 2016, E-Government

  22. Beneficial Ownership Verification System

    UA0061, 2016, Beneficial Ownership

  23. CoST Beneficial Ownership Standards

    UA0062, 2016, E-Government

  24. Transpartent Budget System

    UA0063, 2016,

  25. Starred commitment Open Public Procurement

    UA0064, 2016, Capacity Building

  26. Starred commitment Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative

    UA0065, 2016, Extractive Industries

  27. Environmental Public Monitoring

    UA0066, 2016, Environment and Climate

  28. Community Policing System

    UA0067, 2016, Education

  29. Draft Law on Public Consultations

    UA0068, 2016, Legislation & Regulation

  30. Development of E-Democracy.

    UA0069, 2016, Money in Politics

  31. Improve Government Rules on CSO Involvement

    UA0031, 2014, E-Government

  32. Financing of Charities

    UA0032, 2014, Civic Space

  33. Not-For-Profit Status for CSOs

    UA0033, 2014, Civic Space

  34. Public Participation Law

    UA0034, 2014, E-Government

  35. Establishing Rules on Processing Official Information

    UA0035, 2014, E-Government

  36. Access to Urban Planning Documents

    UA0036, 2014, E-Government

  37. Starred commitment Access to Communist-Era Archives

    UA0037, 2014, Legislation & Regulation

  38. Starred commitment Draft Law on Open Data

    UA0038, 2014, Legislation & Regulation

  39. Starred commitment Supervisory Mechanism for the Right to Information

    UA0039, 2014, Legislation & Regulation

  40. Compliance with EITI

    UA0040, 2014, Extractive Industries

  41. Monitoring of Infrastructure Projects

    UA0041, 2014, Anti-Corruption Institutions

  42. Adopt Regional Anti-Corruption Programmes

    UA0042, 2014, Anti-Corruption Institutions

  43. Corruption Risk Assessment Methodology

    UA0043, 2014, Anti-Corruption Institutions

  44. Starred commitment Asset Disclosure on a Single Web Portal

    UA0044, 2014, Asset Disclosure

  45. Law on Administrative Procedure

    UA0045, 2014, Legislation & Regulation

  46. Law on Streamlining Payment of Administrative Fees

    UA0046, 2014, E-Government

  47. Administrative Services Portal

    UA0047, 2014, E-Government

  48. Draft Law on Decentralisation of Administrative Services

    UA0048, 2014, Legislation & Regulation

  49. Draft Law on Social Services

    UA0049, 2014, E-Government

  50. e-Government Laws

    UA0050, 2014, E-Government

  51. Electronic Readiness Assessment

    UA0051, 2014, E-Government

  52. Government Regulations on Open Data

    UA0052, 2014, E-Government

  53. Electronic Democracy Development Roadmap

    UA0053, 2014, E-Government

  54. Open Budget Initiatives

    UA0054, 2014, E-Government

  55. e-Petitions

    UA0055, 2014, E-Government

  56. e-Governance Training for Local Government

    UA0056, 2014, Capacity Building

  57. Laws on Public Participation

    UA0001, 2012, Civic Space

  58. Amendments to the Law on Community Associations

    UA0002, 2012, Civic Space

  59. Amendments to Resolutions on Collaboration with Civil Society

    UA0003, 2012, E-Government

  60. Training for Public Servants on Consultations

    UA0004, 2012, Capacity Building

  61. Harmonisation of Access to Information Laws

    UA0005, 2012, E-Government

  62. By-Laws on Access to Information

    UA0006, 2012, Legislation & Regulation

  63. Guidelines for Classifying Data

    UA0007, 2012, Public Participation

  64. Public Information Recording Systems

    UA0008, 2012, Records Management

  65. Law on Public Broadcasting

    UA0009, 2012, Civic Space

  66. Public Access to Information in State Registers

    UA0010, 2012, E-Government

  67. Starred commitment Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative

    UA0011, 2012, E-Government

  68. Law for Controlling Declarations of Public Servants

    UA0012, 2012, Asset Disclosure

  69. Public Declarations of Officials’ Assets

    UA0013, 2012, Asset Disclosure

  70. Guidelines on Conflicts of Interest

    UA0014, 2012, Conflicts of Interest

  71. Updated Anti-Corruption Laws

    UA0015, 2012, E-Government

  72. Regional Anti-Corruption Programmes

    UA0016, 2012, E-Government

  73. Law on Competitive e-Government Procurement

    UA0017, 2012, E-Government

  74. Starred commitment Administrative Services Reforms

    UA0018, 2012, E-Government

  75. Electronic Access to Administrative Services

    UA0019, 2012, E-Government

  76. Governmental Web Portal of Administrative Services

    UA0020, 2012, E-Government

  77. Administrative Services in a Digital Format

    UA0021, 2012,

  78. Starred commitment Regional Administrative Service Centres

    UA0022, 2012, Public Service Delivery

  79. Programme for Promotion of e-Government

    UA0023, 2012, E-Government

  80. Electronic Collaboration Between Executive Agencies

    UA0024, 2012,

  81. Web-Based Petitions System

    UA0025, 2012,

  82. One Stop Shop for e-Reporting

    UA0026, 2012, E-Government

  83. e-Region Pilot Project

    UA0027, 2012, E-Government

  84. Network of e-Government Practitioners

    UA0028, 2012, Public Participation

  85. Public Libraries as Bridges Towards e-Governance

    UA0029, 2012, E-Government

  86. e-Government Knowledge Management Portal

    UA0030, 2012,