Reform of the Ukrainian bankruptcy law

Prof Dr Madaus and Dr Ɖurić at the expert talk on insolvency law with the Deputy Minister of Justice of Ukraine, Banchuk, and the Deputy Minister of Justice of Ukraine, Kolomiets.

Despite the war that is raging against Ukraine, the country is continuing with its rule of law reforms, including in the area of insolvency law. Insolvency law will play a major role in the reconstruction and economic development of Ukraine in the medium to long term. The IRZ was requested by the Ministry of Justice of Ukraine to engage in consultations on the reform of insolvency law, and organised a first online discussion with the Ministry of Justice of Ukraine on 9 March 2023.

The experts were represented by Prof Dr Stephan Madaus, Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg, Chair of Civil Law, Civil Procedure and Insolvency Law and Dr Ɖuro Ɖurić, visiting scholar at the chair at the university.

The focus of the expert talk was the purpose and key points of Directive (EU) 2019/1023 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 20 June 2019 on preventive restructuring frameworks, debt relief and prohibitions on activities, and measures to increase the efficiency of restructuring, insolvency and debt relief procedures.

The application of this EU guideline in Germany was analysed and discussed as to what extent the current Ukrainian insolvency law corresponds to this guideline and where changes should be implemented.

Ukraine obtained EU candidate status in June 2022. Since then, EU legal harmonisation has been the increasing focus of reform efforts in Ukraine. High-ranking representatives from the Ministry of Justice of Ukraine therefore took part in the expert talks: the Deputy Minister of Justice, Oleksandr Banchuk, and Deputy Minister of Justice, Valeria Kolomiets.

The IRZ will continue to support the reform of the Ukrainian insolvency law in an advisory capacity. Expert talks and the preparation of written reports are planned along with other activities.

Focus on constitutional adjudication

Speakers at the German-Ukrainian expert talks on constitutional law held on 3-4 November 2022 with the Constitutional Court of Ukraine.

IRZ continued the long tradition of German-Ukrainian expert talks on constitutional law with the Constitutional Court of Ukraine online on 3-4 November 2022. IRZ had already participated in a multilateral online conference of the Constitutional Court of Ukraine in June 2022.

On the German side, these expert talks were conducted by former judges of the Federal Constitutional Court Prof Dr Reinhard Gaier and Prof Dr Udo Steiner, who have both been working for Ukraine for many years. The acting Chair of the Court, Vice-President Prof Serhiy Holovaty, and numerous other constitutional judges of Ukraine participated throughout the two-day conference for the Constitutional Court of Ukraine.

Administrative mangers and other representatives of the court also attended.

Prof Holovaty first reported on constitutional jurisprudence under war conditions. The talks then explored the possibilities of enforcing constitutional court decisions and the question of the disciplinary responsibility of constitutional judges. The introductory presentations on the subject by Constitutional Judge Prof Oleh Pervomaiskyi and Constitutional Judge Dr Halyna Jurov'ska (on enforcement) and Constitutional Judge Prof Vasyl Lemak (on disciplinary law) were followed by an expert discussion with their German counterparts, who in turn reported on their experiences in Germany. Finally, Prof Gaier described the selection process for the judges of the Federal Constitutional Court and emphasised the importance of the involvement of all the stakeholders to reach a consensus.

The selection procedure for the Constitutional Court of Ukraine is highly relevant, as the opinion of the EU Commission on granting Ukraine EU candidate status is demanding a reform of this procedure. A corresponding reform bill is currently being prepared in the Ukrainian parliament for a second reading. An opinion on this draft from the Venice Commission of the Council of Europe has not yet been issued.

It is hoped that further expert exchanges can take place again soon in face-to-face format in Germany or Ukraine.

Solidarity Statement


IRZ is appalled and outraged by the unilateral military aggression of Russian forces in Ukraine and condemns this war of aggression, which is contrary to international law and is bringing endless suffering to the people of Ukraine. We have a long-standing partnership-based collaboration with both Ukraine and Russia. In doing so, we and our experts have always worked with our partner institutions in both countries in a way that is politically neutral. We are giving our full solidarity and support to Ukraine during these times.

This is a difficult situation and a test for Europe, for the principles of democracy and the rule of law! Hundreds of thousands of Ukrainians are now fleeing the country and are dependent on humanitarian aid. Our thoughts and prayers are with the colleagues, friends and acquaintances who have been unable to leave the country or who are forced to stay.

We will continue to monitor events and hope for an early end to the conflict and that Ukraine can continue on its independent path of democratic reform and rule of law. At the same time, we see the events as a call to continue to work tirelessly for a free democratic social order, for human rights and for the standards of international law.

Christian Lange 

Dr. Frauke Bachler
General Director

Dr. Stefan Hülshörster