With the minister of Belarus
The ministers summarized the current Polish and Belarusian cooperation, referring among others to the 1. session of the Polish – Belarusian Commission for cooperation in environmental protection (Białowieża, 30 September 1 October 2016). They also discussed the potential future cooperation for protection and restoration of certain animal species, joint actions at border waters and cooperation in the area of Augustowski Channel (tourism development and maintenance of infrastructure at the joint border section of the channel).
Minister Kovkhuto pointed out at the importance of cooperation with the Polish National Fund for Environmental Protection and Water Management (NFEP&WM) in delivery of the investments, including among others waste treatment plant in Brest. When referring to climate policy, the ministers agreed on future cooperation in this area.
The Belarusian party expressed also its interest in the Polish proposal of forest carbon farms, which may play an important role in delivery of the emission reduction targets under the Paris Agreement.
With the minister of Ukraine
The discussions focused on the potential areas of cooperation related to implementation by Ukraine of the European Union Association Agreement, which entered into force in January this year. Minister Jan Szyszko proposed Polish support to Ukraine by means of expert advice in implementation of the EU provisions to the Ukrainian legislation and joint investments in environmental protection. Considering the experience gained by Poland in process of accession preparation and membership to the European Union, Minister Semerak welcomed the Polish offer. In addition, he presented the most urgent issues of concern in environmental protection in Ukraine related among others to water management and informed on the scheduled launching by the European Commission of the new programme dedicated to development of the Ukrainian renewable energy industry.
When referring to the Polish successes in environmental protection, including these related to financing the pro-environmental initiatives, Minister Seremak expressed his appreciation for the operation of the National Fund for Environmental Protection and Water Management in Poland and at the same time emphasized his interest in sharing the experiences in the potential implementation of a similar instrument in Ukraine. When referring to joint Polish and Ukrainian investment projects, the Polish party proposed carrying-out of analysis of needs in this area and specifying the scope of the investments to be delivered. The ministers agreed that further cooperation will be executed under the Polish – Ukrainian Working Group to be established in nearly future.
The discussions were also attended by Vice-Minister of Environment Paweł Sałek and President of the Management Board of the National Fund for Environmental Protection, Kazimierz Kujda.