The Eastern Partnership is useful for Ukraine if it brings the Ukrainian state closer to membership in the European Union, as stated by President Volodymyr Zelenskyy during a speech at a video conference of the Eastern Partnership leaders.
“The Eastern Partnership should not limit the ambitions of the partners. For someone political dialogue is enough, for someone strategic partnership with the EU is enough, someone strives for integration into the common market on the basis of the “four freedoms”, and someone, like Ukraine, demands full membership in the EU,” Volodymyr Zelenskyy said.
The Head of State reminded that from the beginning the goal of the initiative was to build the EU community with partners who share European values and principles. At the same time, the benefits of such an association should be enjoyed by all citizens of the countries – participants.
The President of Ukraine expressed confidence in the possibility of jointly overcoming the challenges of today, in particular the consequences of the coronavirus pandemic, by deepening integration and increasing coordination between countries, rather than by political self-isolation and protectionism.
“This meeting is a great opportunity to discuss further cooperation to overcome the current crisis and overcome similar challenges in the future. We are facing very difficult tasks: to protect the lives and health of citizens, to restore people-to-people and business contacts, to bring the economy out of the crisis trajectory,” the President said.
The President also thanked the European Union for its support, in particular for the new € 1.2 billion macro-financial assistance program, which is important and timely. In addition, according to Volodymyr Zelenskyy, Ukraine counts on cooperation with the EU in the purchase of the COVID-19 vaccine as soon as it is produced.
The Head of State noted that Ukraine, for its part, also supported European partners. In particular, Ukrainian medics came to the aid of Italian colleagues, and Ukrainian planes delivered medical supplies to many EU countries.
“I am sure that the slogan Stronger Together is more relevant today than ever,” the President of Ukraine said.