We share the strong will of Ukrainians to live in European country and we will work together towards it

Author : Andrej Plenković

Source : 112 Ukraine

Andrej Plenković, Chair of the Delegation to the EU-Ukraine Parliamentary Association Committe, gave an exclusive comment to 112.International regarding the current situation in Ukraine and changes that Ukraine goes through
13:16, 19 February 2016

"Ukraine and its people who clearly chose European future – remain one of the highest priorities for the European Union, despite numerous challenges facing the Union at the moment. Full support for the implementation of the Association Agreement, entry into force of the DCFTA, allocation of substantial financial and expert resources to implementation of reforms and positive recommendations on granting visa-free regime to Ukrainians in 2016 – are concrete examples of how important the success of Ukraine’s transformation is for the EU. We share the strong will of Ukrainians to live in European country where the rule of law is respected and we will work together towards it.

However, the EU support is not unconditional. We expect that Ukrainian leadership is sincerely committed to reforms, among which fight against corruption is a number one priority. My personal experience working closely with Ukrainian counterparts in the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine, meeting on numerous occasions the President, the Prime Minister and other high level-politicians shows that such commitment and devotion to reforms is present in Ukraine.

We in the European Parliament were surprised by the decision of Mr. Aivaras Abromavicius and his team to resign. The reasons of his decision highlight some negative practices, which of course we would not like to see happening after the Revolution of Dignity and taking into account aggression against Ukraine. However, rigid reform process and eradication of corruption is inevitably connected to challenges and risks of political disputes. Therefore, we welcome the announcements made by the President, Prime Minister as well as by Mr. Abromavicius towards developing constructive proposals on how to change the practices which jeopardize transparent and independent decision-making. We have noted also a positive contribution of the civil society experts who came up with their recommendations. Therefore, this is yet another example of how Ukraine manages to go out of the political crisis and to put one more brick into a solid foundation of the democratic European Ukraine.

Nevertheless, this is only beginning of the reform process. I therefore reiterate the necessity to eradicate corruption in the Ukrainian system and continue with pro-European reforms, which requires united coalition. We are looking forward to seeing first concrete results of the anti-corruption institutions which were set up in 2015 and this is an area that will be very much in the focus of our dialogue with our counterparts in the Verknovna Rada in the next few months. I can ensure you that there is a strong willingness, within the European Parliament, to continue our intensive cooperation with the Ukrainian Parliament. It is in the interest of both the EU and the Ukrainian citizens that the transformation goes fast and brings expected results."

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