The Ministry of Justice presented the working text of the National Judicial Reform Strategy for the period 2019-2024

On the 24 June, 2019 the Minister of Justice presented the working text of the National Judicial Reform Strategy (“the Strategy”). On the presentation of the working text it was pointed out that the text of the Strategy was created by the same working group that created the National Judicial Reform Strategy for the period 2013-2018. In parallel with the development of the Strategy, the Ministry is also working on the development of the Action Plan for Chapter 23. The Ministry says that at the same time the Action plan should serve as an Action Plan for implementing the measures of the Strategy, in order to control the implementation of the activities more effectively.

The Strategy is a way to an independent and autonomous, modern and efficient judiciary, accountable and open to citizens and society. The overall goal of the Strategy is to further strengthen the rule of law, access to justice and legal security in order to achieve efficient protection of the rights and freedoms of citizens and to raise the level of trust in the judicial system. Priorities presented in the Strategy are further strengthening the independence of the judiciary and the independence of the prosecution, which will be achieved through the improvement of the normative and institutional framework. Further priority is strengthening the integrity of the holders of judicial roles, members of the High Court Council and State Prosecutor Council by strengthening the mechanism of responsibility of judges and public prosecutors by monitoring the results of disciplinary proceedings. Further enhancement of the quality of the Judicial System, which is an objective that can be achieved by strengthening the skills and knowledge of judicial officials and employees in the judiciary. Later priority is further raising the level of efficiency of the judicial system which will, among other things, be achieved by the analysis and adjustment of the judicial network, by reducing the total number of unsolved cases with an accent on old cases and by preventing creation of old cases. And final priority is to raise the level of public confidence in the work of judiciary, which would be most effective through accessible judicial institutions and continued transparency of their work. For the current state of affairs in the field of justice the Strategy states that great progress has been made over the past six years in establishing the transparency of the judicial system and access to justice, numerous services have been established for citizens which have become more accessible to them through e-justice system. For now, the availability of court practice has been partially achieved, and court practice is certainly an essential for the equal application of law.

As the Action Plan for Chapter 23 has been sent to the European Commission in order to give its comments, after the European Commission sends its remarks it will be open a new public consultation with state authorities and interested public. With the adoption of the Action Plan the presented Strategy will also be adopted.