EU relations with Russia

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  • 06/10/2014
    626 65744 1 _blank Statement by the Spokesperson on the terrorist attack in Grozny Statement by the Spokesperson on the terrorist attack in Grozny

    We condemn the attack of a suicide bomber on the City Day celebrations in Grozny. There can be no justification for such an attack against innocent lives. We express our condolences to the families of the victims as well as to Russia's Government and people.

    /statements/docs/2014/141006_01_en.pdf
    10/06/2014 17:43:00 10/06/2014 17:43:00 10/06/2014 17:43:00 nulldate 2014100617 <p>European External Action Service</p> 090126248cbadcd5 N 090126248cbadcd5 /statements/docs/2014/141006_01_en.pdf 437995 pdf Y /statements/docs/2014/141006_01_en.pdf 2 /statements/docs/2014/141006_01_en.pdf /statements/docs/2014/141006_01_fr.pdf /statements/docs/2014/141006_01_zz.pdf N ID_INTERNAL N N
    Statement by the Spokesperson on the terrorist attack in Grozny pdf - 428 KB [428 KB] français (fr)
  • 01/10/2014
    Letter from President Barroso to President Putin
  • 30/09/2014
    619 65744 1 _blank Statement by the Spokesperson on the arrest in international waters and detention of a Lithuanian vessel by authorities of the Russian Federation Statement by the Spokesperson on the arrest in international waters and detention of a Lithuanian vessel by authorities of the Russian Federation

    We are concerned by the forced apprehension of the Lithuanian fishing vessel "Jūros Vilkas" by Russian border guards in high seas waters of the Barents Sea on 18 September, the subsequent detention of the vessel and its crew, as well as its forceful towing to Russian territory.

    /statements/docs/2014/140930_01_en.pdf
    09/30/2014 18:03:00 09/30/2014 18:03:00 09/30/2014 18:03:00 nulldate 2014093018 <p>European External Action Service</p> 090126248cb25063 N 090126248cb25063 /statements/docs/2014/140930_01_en.pdf 481006 pdf Y /statements/docs/2014/140930_01_en.pdf 1 /statements/docs/2014/140930_01_en.pdf /statements/docs/2014/140930_01_zz.pdf N ID_INTERNAL N N
    Statement by the Spokesperson on the arrest in international waters and detention of a Lithuanian vessel by authorities of the Russian Federation pdf - 470 KB [470 KB]

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The Russian Federation's role in the Ukraine conflict has seriously affected EU-Russia relations. Consequently, some of the activities outlined below are at a halt and sanctions have been adopted.

Russia is the EU's biggest neighbour and its third biggest trading partner. Supplies of oil and gas make up a large proportion of the country's exports to Europe.

Legal basis for cooperation

The current basis for cooperation is the 1994 Partnership and Cooperation Agreement (PCA).

Negotiations on a new EU-Russia Agreement were launched at the 2008 Khanty-Mansiysk summit. The new agreement should:

  • provide a more comprehensive framework for EU-Russia relations, reflecting increased cooperation since the early 1990s
  • include substantive, legally binding commitments in all areas of the partnership, including political dialogue, freedom, security & justice, economic cooperation, research, education & culture, trade, investment and energy.

Common spaces

Ongoing EU-Russia cooperation covers 4 policy areas – referred to as common spaces:

  • economy & the environment
  • freedom, security & justice 
  • external security ­
  • research & education, including cultural aspects.

Partnership for Modernisation

Established following the 2010 Rostov Summit, the Partnership for Modernisation covers all aspects of moderni­sation – economic, technical (including standards and regulations), the rule of law, and the functioning of the judiciary. It has become a focal point for cooperation, reinforcing dialogue initiated in the context of the common spaces. For details, see the latest progress report .

Recent Partnership initiatives include:

  • rule of law projects (setting up an appeal system within the Russian judicial system; anti-corruption measures)
  • fostering  civil society in Russia
  • economic and technical modernisation.

International cooperation

The EU and Russia have a long record of cooperation on issues of bilateral and international concern including climate change, drug and human trafficking, organized crime, counter-terrorism, non-proliferation, the Middle East peace process, and Iran.

Sanctions

In response to Russia's illegal annexation of Crimea and continuing destabilisation of Ukraine - including aggression by Russian armed forces on Ukrainian soil - the EU has suspended talks on visas and a new EU-Russia agreement. Most EU-Russia cooperation programmes have been suspended.

Targeted measures have been taken against Russia in areas including:

  • access to capital markets,
  • defence
  • dual-use goods
  • sensitive technologies (including those in the energy sector).

The European Investment Bank and the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development have suspended the signing of new financing operations in Russia.

A trade and investment ban is now in force for Crimea/Sevastopol, bolstering measures taken to mark the EU's non-recognition of the annexation of Crimea. Furthermore, a number of individuals and bodies in Russia and Ukraine are subject to travel bans, and their assets have been frozen.

Russia has taken retaliatory measures, including a ban on the import of certain foods from the EU and several non-EU countries.

For further details of the impact of the Ukraine conflict on EU-Russia relations, including sanctions, see Russia-Ukraine , EU sanctions.