Announcement: press briefing “Critical Infrastructure Protection and Chemical Security Systems: Needs and Possibilities for Ukraine”

A press briefing, held on Thursday, 16 August 2018, at 13:15 at the premises of the Ukraine Crisis Media Centre, will provide a possibility for journalists and experts to get insights of two relatively new security areas where the OSCE as a whole and the OSCE Project Co-ordinator in particular have been providing support to Ukraine: critical infrastructure protection and chemical safety and security. The speakers will include:

  • Vaidotas Verba, OSCE Project Coordinator in Ukraine
  • David Wulf, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Infrastructure Protection, US Department of Homeland Security

Background:

In 2017 and 2018 the Government of Ukraine adopted a series of decisions, including the “Concept for Creating a State System for the Protection of Critical Infrastructure”, aimed at preventing national security threats and protecting systems, facilities and resources critical for the proper functioning and socio-economic development of the country. Based on the concept, the Ukrainian authorities have begun developing the Critical Infrastructure Protection System. Priorities include establishing a co-ordinating authority and competencies of states’ agencies; the regulatory and administrative framework; the methodology for assessing threats; and criteria for designating facilities as critical infrastructure. Effective implementation of these efforts requires close co-operation of national actors and engaging international expertise and capacity building.

In 2015, a broad assessment of Chemical Safety and Security in Ukraine was conducted. Based on this, the OSCE Project Co-ordinator and the OSCE Forum for Security Cooperation Support Section launched the OSCE Integrated Chemical Safety and Security Programme in Ukraine. The Programme supports UNSCR 1540 on nonproliferation, as well as a range of OSCE and European Union commitments. Currently, the OSCE is helping Ukraine with three projects. With the Ministry of Economic Development and Trade, it is reviewing and updating regulations; with the State Border Guard Service and Fiscal Service it is training officials to strengthen border security; and with the Ministry of Health it is establishing a reference laboratory that will be able to identify unknown chemical agents. Also to strengthen emergency response and awareness-raising in the high risk areas, the Project Co-ordinator produced awareness-raising materials that are being used to educate the population, as well as supported table-top exercises for emergency agencies in 2017.

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