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  • Vadym Prystaiko: The joining of interested partners to the Four Freedoms of the European Union can become a new goal of Eastern Parnership
    Service of the Deputy Prime Minister of Ukraine, posted 15 May 2020 13:32

    Ukraine proposes to make the gradual entry of interested partners into the Four Freedoms of the European Union a new strategic goal in the framework of the Eastern Partnership. It is about creating conditions for the free movement of goods, services, people and capital. This was stated by Deputy Prime Minister for European and Euro-Atlantic Integration Vadym Prystaiko during an online discussion "Ukraine in the Eastern Partnership: an ambitious agenda after 2020" on May 14.

    The Deputy Prime Minister stressed the invariability of Ukraine’s strategic course towards the EU and NATO integration. According to him, the Eastern Partnership is an important platform for deepening Ukraine's cooperation with the European Union in addition to the bilateral dialogue.

    "The Eastern Partnership has brought significant achievements in the field of political association, deepening economic relations, and the introduction of a visa-free regime. However, the future of the initiative will be vague if the level of cooperation already achieved by EU associated partners is ignored. The EU's Eastern Partnership policy must be ambitious, future-oriented and positive. The European Union should offer partners new strategic goals. "Ukraine sees the gradual entry of interested partners into the Four Freedoms of the European Union as such a goal," the top official explained.

    Vadym Prystaiko noted that the Conclusions of the Council of the European Union on the Eastern Partnership policy lack ambition and strategic vision. He expressed hope that the Joint Declaration to be adopted at the Eastern Partnership summit would take into account the expectations of the parties and formulate a new positive agenda for deepening integration processes.

    "We expect that the common vision of the associated countries - Ukraine, Georgia and Moldova - on the future of the Eastern Partnership, transferred to the EU institutions, will be taken into account," said Vadym Prystaiko.

    Separately, the Deputy Prime Minister stressed the importance of the security component of cooperation.

    "Security issue is essential for Ukraine. So far, the EU has focused on a softer security dimension, including capacity building in the civil security sector with the support of the EUAM advisory mission. Given the level of "severe" threats, the security aspect needs to be intensified. For example, the regional presence of EUAM should be expanded (at least in Mariupol) and the number of mobile teams should be increased. Ukraine is interested in joining the PESCO defense program when it proves possible," Vadym Prystaiko emphasized.