Today, the EU reaffirmed its commitment to strengthen its strategic relationship with its Southern Neighbourhood partners during the EU-Southern Neighbourhood Ministerial Meeting chaired by High Representative/Vice-President Josep Borrell, with participation of Olivér Várhelyi, Commissioner for Neighbourhood and Enlargement. The meeting was hosted by Arancha González, Minister of Foreign Affairs, European Union and Cooperation of Spain.
At 10 November 2020 Western Balkans Sofia Summit, leaders from the region agreed to strengthen cooperation in order to develop a common regional market and to implement a green and digital transition. The EU endorses and supports these commitments, which will be instrumental to boosting socio-economic development and accelerating the region’s path towards the European Union.
The Commission adopted on 6 October 2020 the Enlargement package and the Economic and Investment plan for the Western Balkans. The Enlargement package assesses the state of implementation of reforms and presents recommendations to the six Western Balkans partners on their continued path towards the EU. The major Economic and Investment Plan for the Western Balkans aims to accelerate the long-term economic recovery of the region, support a green and digital transition, and foster the region’s integration and convergence with the EU.
Ukraine is a priority partner for the European Union (EU). The EU supports Ukraine in ensuring a stable, prosperous and democratic future for its citizens and is unwavering in its support for Ukraine’s ndependence, territorial integrity and sovereignty. The Association Agreement (AA), including its Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Area (DCFTA) signed in 2014, is the main tool for bringing Ukraine and the EU closer together, promoting deeper political ties, stronger economic links and respect for common values. Ukraine continues an ambitious reform programme to accelerate economic growth and improve the livelihoods of its citizens. Priority reforms include the fight against corruption, reform of the judiciary, constitutional and electoral reforms, improvement of the business climate and energy efficiency, as well as reform of public administration and decentralisation. Since 2014, the EU and the Financial Institutions have
mobilised more than €15 billion in grants and loans to support the reform process, with strong conditionality on continued progress.
The first edition of the EU – Western Balkans Media Literacy Conference took place on 29 September gathering fact-checkers, youth, journalists and authorities from the Western Balkans, the EU and beyond discussing media literacy and fight against disinformation. The Conference conclusions stress the need for all actors – EU, local authorities and civil society - to invest in education, engage with youth, support professional journalism and fact-checkers in order to strengthen democracy and counter disinformation.
20/09/2020 - On September 12, I had a videoconference with my fellow foreign ministers of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN). The European Union shares many common views with this organisation. And in particular the will not to align with China or the US in the growing strategic rivalry between them. We must and will strengthen our ties.
European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen today mapped out in her first annual State of the Union address, a path for the European Union to overcome the fragility laid bare by the coronavirus crisis and build a union of vitality.
09/09/2020 - These days, there is much talk about "Global Europe": how to make the Union a truly global player in a world marked by the strategic rivalry between the US and China, the questioning of multilateralism plus health and environmental crises. You will find here a synthesis of my views, as discussed recently with my fellow Commissioners.
04/09/2020 - On Tuesday, I visited Libya, meeting the authorities of the war-torn country. Shortly after the ceasefire understanding announced on 21 August, the aim of the visit was to explore further support the EU can provide to implement this ceasefire and help resolve the Libyan conflict. There is a glimmer of hope that we need to build on.