Commissioner Hahn: EU will continue to support Ukraine
December 1, 2014.
Upon his returned from Ukraine Commissioner for European Neighbourhood Policy & Enlargement Negotiations Johannes Hahn said to the media:
I visited Ukraine on the occasion of the opening session of the new Rada: first Parliament with the necessary majority for reforms
After a remarkable year we noted free and fair conduct of elections for President and Parliament. The new government has a very big majority.
I had the opportunity to speak with leading figures from the key parties, including the opposition. Pro-European course is clear, and so is the will for the necessary reforms eg Decentralisation
The public, the voters and those who risked so much on the Maidan, now expect promises to be kept.
Everyone – politicians, and civil society – know that the country is in a very serious situation: following events in Crimea and eastern Ukraine, Russia's retaliatory measures, nearly a million people displaced, and unbelievable human tragedy
The EU and international community must stay firm. This is why sanctions have just been extended.
It was an important sign of unity, that the President, Speaker, and Prime minister held a joint meeting with me in the Parliament. I also held bilateral meetings with the Prime Minister and Foreign minister.
They are explicitly asking the EU to play a role in their transition.
Internal reforms are essential: the rule of law creates the necessary climate for investment by Ukrainian investors but also from foreign enterprises. Interest is there if the conditions can be created.
IMF has been carrying out an evaluation now with a view to releasing its next two tranches of support (2.7bn US dollars). We will follow this closely
EU assistance: I was able to sign an agreement for regional development worth 55 million US dollarswith the action Minister of the economy Valery Piatnitsky. Also was able to confirm during my visit that the second tranche of the second Macro Financial Assistance programme for Ukraine will be delivered shortly (there will be an announcement from my colleague Moscovici this week).
My key message was: the EU is not just a donor for Ukraine. We need something in return. Ukraine needs to move from an idea of itself as a recipient of aid to the idea of itself as an investment opportunity. We will continue to support Ukraine – not only with financial means but with the expertise for example of the Support Group for Ukraine, to help it make this shift
I have committed to visit the country every quarter to help monitor progress and co-ordinate efforts. I have asked my services to work with colleagues from the EEAS to draw up a single to do list for Ukraine, including some short term priorities
If we all work with commitment and political will, we can achieve the results the country wants and needs. No shortage of determination on our side.