European Commission's recommendation on EU accession talks with Ukraine is basis for positive decisions
Olha Stefanishyna, Vice Prime Minister for Euro-Atlantic Integration of Ukraine, believes that the European Commission's decision to start negotiations on Ukraine's accession to the EU could be implemented as early as December this year
She said this on Espreso TV.
"Now we are not talking about any concessions for the sake of Ukraine's membership in the EU. On the contrary, we understand that for all EU countries, not only the neighboring ones, we have to demonstrate our ability to be part of a larger Europe. We have to become a country that can find consensus in difficult situations while defending our own interests," Stefanishyna emphasized.
The Vice Prime Minister noted that Ukraine could receive positive decisions on opening negotiations to join the EU as early as December.
"We feel very confident that we are fulfilling all the EU membership requirements. We have a lot of support from national minorities, including the Hungarian minority, on this issue. However, I do not want to focus on Hungary. I just want to emphasize that this process is being established. Starting tomorrow, after the European Commission's decision, our priority is to work with the EU countries. After all, today's decision has laid a very solid foundation for the vast majority of EU countries to make a positive decision to open negotiations in December," she added.
Ukraine's accession to the EU
Ukraine applied for EU membership on 28 February 2022 during the Russian-Ukrainian war.
On June 23, 2022, Ukraine was granted candidate status for EU membership.
In May, Ukraine’s Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal said that Ukraine should be ready to join the EU in two years - the country expects to receive a political decision to start accession negotiations this year.
According to Espreso's sources, the European Parliament is considering the possibility of starting negotiations on Ukraine's accession to the EU this fall.
However, on August 17, Deputy Prime Minister for European and Euro-Atlantic Integration Olha Stefanishyna said that Ukraine would not be able to implement all 7 EU recommendations by October, as these are changes that have been implemented over the years.
Maria Mezentseva, Deputy Head of the Verkhovna Rada Committee on Ukraine's Integration with the EU, Head of the Permanent Delegation to PACE, noted that it is necessary to wait for the October report of the European Commission on the implementation of 7 EU recommendations by Ukraine.
On August 28, European Council President Charles Michel said that the European Union should be ready to accept new member states by 2030. The EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Josep Borrell, expressed support for setting a tentative ‘time target’ for new members to join the EU.
On September 8, Lithuanian President Gitanas Nausėda said it was important that negotiations on Ukraine's accession to the EU begin by the end of this year. A clear European perspective will inspire Ukrainians on the battlefield.
On September 21, the head of the Servant of the People parliamentary faction, Davyd Arakhamia, said that the Ukrainian parliament has passed 99.9% of what is needed to start negotiations on EU membership.
Media reports suggest that Ukraine will receive a recommendation to start negotiations on November 8, but that additional conditions will be put forward. And on December 14-15, the EU summit will decide whether to start membership talks with Ukraine.
On October 26, Stefanishyna expressed confidence that Ukraine would be able to reach a good political decision on joining the EU in December.
On October 28, President Zelenskyy addressed the leaders of the European Union, calling for unity in the decision to start negotiations on Ukraine's accession to the EU.
On October 31, Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba assured that Ukraine would start negotiations on EU membership this year, barring force majeure.
On November 4, Zelenskyy said that Ukraine is not asking for "concessions" on its path to EU membership.
As of early November, the European Commission considered four of the seven criteria for granting Ukraine the status of a candidate for EU membership to be fully met.
On Tuesday, November 8, the European Commission released a report in which it recognized Ukraine's progress and recommended that the process of negotiating Ukraine's accession to the EU be launched.