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Business position on the reorganization of the State Service of Ukraine on Food Safety and Consumer Protection

20/ 08/ 2020
  Yesterday it became known that the Cabinet of Ministers intends to reorganize the State Service of Ukraine on Food Safety and Consumer Protection and establish the State Service for Disease Control. According to the information received, the Government has prepared a draft resolution of the Cabinet of Ministers which they planned to discuss yesterday, however, the discussion was later postponed. According to the proposed concept, the newly created service will implement state policy under the Ministry of Health in food safety, including safety quality indicators, sanitary legislation, sanitary and epidemiological welfare of the population, epidemiological surveillance. At the same time, according to the current CMU resolution on the Regulations on the State Service on Food Safety and Consumer Protection, the Service conducts a state policy in a much larger number of areas and industries including veterinary medicine, quarantine and plant protection, seed and nursery, etc. Therefore, according to business, the changes initiated by the Ministry of Health threaten the stability of many economic sectors, particularly, agriculture, seed production, retail trade, consumer goods. Besides, it is inexpedient to remove safety issues and certain indicators of food quality from the competence of the Mineconomy, which is the relevant central executive authority for the food industry. Therefore, the business representatives were surprised by the information about the reorganization of the Service. The most surprising is the rush of the decision to reorganize the State Service on Food Safety and Consumer Protection. The community has always advocated for the quality work of state authorities and the effectiveness of interaction with business. In 2014, the establishment of the State Service on Food Safety and Consumer Protection was welcomed by the business and it became one of the important reforms to ensure food security in the country. However, its establishment then took a long time and required the business to adapt to the new procedures. However, the epidemiological situation in the country was radically different as it was more stable. So now, the probable reorganization may also be accompanied by drastic changes in the system and, potentially, slow down export-import operations and trade in the domestic market due to delays in obtaining permits, etc., in times of economic crisis caused by COVID-19. At the same time, the State Service on Food Safety and Consumer Protection has operated without a Head for about a year. There were several attempts to appoint a new Head, however, the appointment did not take place. Nevertheless, are impossible wi, any service must have a Head to ensure effective work and coordinated actions of the Service as he will coordinate the work processes, the team and be responsible for the implementation of the responsibilities assigned to the service. Thus, according to the community, reforms of this scale should be widely discussed with all interested stakeholders, and only then the decision can be taken. Besides, when making decisions of this magnitude, it is necessary to carefully assess all the pros and cons, whether the new idea will be useful for the country and what are the possible consequences for the related areas. So now, according to the business, the emphasis should be made on the appointment of a truly effective leader of the existing Service, as well as the strategic development of work processes. Therefore, the business does not support the reorganization of the State Service of Ukraine on Food Safety and Consumer Protection and appeals to the Prime Minister to reject this initiative. The emphasis on efficiency, rather than action for the sake of action, is now essential for the control and surveillance system to function smoothly in the country, especially in the context of the extremely difficult epidemiological situation due to the coronavirus. We hope the voice of business will be heard!   Be the first to learn about the latest EBA news with our Telegram-channel – EBAUkraine.

Yesterday it became known that the Cabinet of Ministers intends to reorganize the State Service of Ukraine on Food Safety and Consumer Protection and establish the State Service for Disease Control. According to the information received, the Government has prepared a draft resolution of the Cabinet of Ministers which they planned to discuss yesterday, however, the discussion was later postponed.

According to the proposed concept, the newly created service will implement state policy under the Ministry of Health in food safety, including safety quality indicators, sanitary legislation, sanitary and epidemiological welfare of the population, epidemiological surveillance. At the same time, according to the current CMU resolution on the Regulations on the State Service on Food Safety and Consumer Protection, the Service conducts a state policy in a much larger number of areas and industries including veterinary medicine, quarantine and plant protection, seed and nursery, etc. Therefore, according to business, the changes initiated by the Ministry of Health threaten the stability of many economic sectors, particularly, agriculture, seed production, retail trade, consumer goods. Besides, it is inexpedient to remove safety issues and certain indicators of food quality from the competence of the Mineconomy, which is the relevant central executive authority for the food industry.

Therefore, the business representatives were surprised by the information about the reorganization of the Service. The most surprising is the rush of the decision to reorganize the State Service on Food Safety and Consumer Protection.

The community has always advocated for the quality work of state authorities and the effectiveness of interaction with business. In 2014, the establishment of the State Service on Food Safety and Consumer Protection was welcomed by the business and it became one of the important reforms to ensure food security in the country. However, its establishment then took a long time and required the business to adapt to the new procedures. However, the epidemiological situation in the country was radically different as it was more stable. So now, the probable reorganization may also be accompanied by drastic changes in the system and, potentially, slow down export-import operations and trade in the domestic market due to delays in obtaining permits, etc., in times of economic crisis caused by COVID-19.

At the same time, the State Service on Food Safety and Consumer Protection has operated without a Head for about a year. There were several attempts to appoint a new Head, however, the appointment did not take place. Nevertheless, are impossible wi, any service must have a Head to ensure effective work and coordinated actions of the Service as he will coordinate the work processes, the team and be responsible for the implementation of the responsibilities assigned to the service.

Thus, according to the community, reforms of this scale should be widely discussed with all interested stakeholders, and only then the decision can be taken.

Besides, when making decisions of this magnitude, it is necessary to carefully assess all the pros and cons, whether the new idea will be useful for the country and what are the possible consequences for the related areas. So now, according to the business, the emphasis should be made on the appointment of a truly effective leader of the existing Service, as well as the strategic development of work processes. Therefore, the business does not support the reorganization of the State Service of Ukraine on Food Safety and Consumer Protection and appeals to the Prime Minister to reject this initiative.

The emphasis on efficiency, rather than action for the sake of action, is now essential for the control and surveillance system to function smoothly in the country, especially in the context of the extremely difficult epidemiological situation due to the coronavirus. We hope the voice of business will be heard!

 

Be the first to learn about the latest EBA news with our Telegram-channel EBAUkraine.

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