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EU project

ACCORD: Accountability and Capacity-building for Customs Oversight and Reform Development

Project Description
The project targets vital improvements in the Ukrainian State Customs Service (SCS) to boost efficiency, transparency, and accountability. Challenges include limited civil society engagement due to a lack of open data and understanding of customs' budgetary impact, resulting in a trust deficit with only 3% trust in customs. The absence of reliable data impedes oversight, hindering the identification of corruption and operational inefficiencies. Legal framework alignment with the EU progresses, but implementation challenges persist.

Civil society involvement through the Public Council under the SCS has been ineffective, necessitating an improved dialogue mechanism. Ongoing war-related challenges, such as potential smuggling hotspots, security risks, and resource diversion, further complicate the situation. The project aligns with Ukraine's EU aspirations, emphasizing the urgency of customs reforms. In conclusion, the Ukrainian customs system urgently needs intervention amid ongoing challenges, and the proposed project aims to comprehensively address these issues, fostering collaboration between the SCS and civil society while aligning customs practices with EU standards.
Specific Objective
The proposed project pursues the overall objective of increasing transparency, accountability and efficiency within the Ukrainian customs authority and modernising customs administration in alignment of the EU standards and requirements.
To achieve this overall objective, the project will focus on the following four directions:
(1) strengthening civil society’s oversight of the customs administration,
(2) ensuring transparency, improving accountability and strengthening public trust in the customs administration,
(3) contributing to the policy making in customs area based on the EU standards,
(4) fostering dialogue between government bodies and civil society.
Expected Results
1. The project will strengthen the capacity of civil society organisations and anti-corruption bodies to monitor and report on customs operations. This can be achieved through the development of relevant training materials and educational events. In addition, the project is ready to involve capable CSOs and NGOs located in critical regions (e.g. Odesa, Lviv, Chernivtsi, Zakarpattia) in monitoring customs operations on the ground. Based on the results of their monitoring, policy recommendations will be developed.
2. The business intelligence tool (BI tool) will be developed and implemented to present the data collected in accordance with the developed key performance indicators. It is expected that the analytical data on customs operations will be made publicly available, which will allow to track, monitor and evaluate customs operations, as well as identify areas for further improvement.
3. The project's analytical activities will contribute to the development of evidence-based and data-driven recommendations aimed at improving the performance of the State Customs Service of Ukraine. Annual fraud and corruption risk assessments, shadow reports for the EU enlargement report, needs/capacity assessments and feasibility studies, as well as policy documents with recommendations for reforms will be developed.
4. The existing platform for dialogue between the State Customs Service (SCS) and civil society organisations will be strengthened, contributing to more effective policy discussion and public awareness. The results of the project's analytical work will also be disseminated and stakeholders will be engaged in policy debates, ultimately ensuring a sustainable impact on the development of the Ukrainian customs administration.
Project map
Priority Area:
Partnership that empowers, Partnership that empowers, Partnership that creates, Partnership that protects, Partnership that protects, Partnership that connects
Public Administration Reform, Civil society, Economy & trade, Governance & public administration, Rule of law & human rights, Digital (broadband, mobile, eGov, digital innovation, cyber)
Digital, Human rights, Political relations, Research and Innovation
Project Status:
Start Date:
End Date:
EU Project Number:
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