President Juncker at the 20th EU-Ukraine Summit - Hoofdinhoud
Ukraine's continued commitment to reforms was strongly supported by the EU at today's 20th EU-Ukraine Summit that took place in Brussels.
The Summit took stock of the implementation of the EU-Ukraine Association Agreement, progress in reforms and the first year of visa-freedom, with the EU's message being one of additional reforms for additional support.
The President of the European Commission, Jean-Claude Juncker i, and the President of the European Council, Donald Tusk i, represented the European Union. Ukraine was represented by its President, Petro Poroshenko i. The High Representative of the EU for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy and Vice-President of the Commission Federica Mogherini i, Vice-President Maroš Šefčovič, Vice-President Valdis Dombrovskis i, and Commissioner Cecilia Malmström i also participated for the European Union.
At the press conference President Juncker said: "In the last four years, we have done more together than in the last 20. (…) The more Ukraine reforms, the more the European Union will support Ukraine". President Juncker welcomed the reforms achieved in the field to fight corruption, stressing that some aspects of legislation need to be improved and this will be done in coming days. "Since last year, more than half a million Ukrainian citizens have made the most out of visa free travel to the European Union and our bilateral trade has gone up by almost 25%", said the President of the European Commission.
Over €11 billion of the European Union's initial support package of €12.8 billion for Ukraine's reform efforts has now been delivered. Today's summit was an opportunity for EU Leaders to continue to show their unprecedented support for Ukraine's reform agenda.
Leaders welcomed the recent decision of the European Parliament and the Council to provide Ukraine with further Macro-Financial Assistance of up to €1 billion to support economic stabilisation and structural reforms. EU Leaders stressed that the new programme will be conditional on continued progress on reforms, in particular in the area of the fight against corruption, which remains a key area for Ukraine.
The European Union reiterated its continued and unwavering support for Ukraine's independence, sovereignty and territorial integrity. The European Union condemns and does not recognise the illegal annexation of Crimea and Sevastopol by the Russian Federation.
Leaders reiterated the full implementation of the Minsk Agreements as the basis for a sustainable and peaceful settlement of the conflict in eastern Ukraine.
Leaders also discussed the continuing deterioration of the human rights situation in certain areas of the Donetsk and Luhansk regions not currently under the control of the government, as well as in Crimea and Sevastopol. The European Union expects the Russian Federation to immediately release all illegally detained Ukrainian citizens in the Crimean peninsula and in Russia.