Mogherini: EU invests in Ukraine more than any other partner has done
EU High Representative for Foreign and Security Policy Federica Mogherini has said that the European Union (EU) has invested in Ukraine more than other partners have done.
Speaking on Wednesday in Brussels at the European Parliament plenary debate on the situation in Ukraine, Mogherini said that since the first debate on Ukraine by the EU five years ago, "Ukraine has come a very long way." "Throughout these years, the European Union has always stood at the side of the Ukrainian people. After 2014 we have put together for Ukraine the biggest support package in the history of the European Union – worth over EUR 15 billion. We have invested more in Ukraine than in any other country in the world. And no other partner has invested in Ukraine as much as we have done," she said.
She recalled that five years ago when Mogherini assumed her post "Ukraine was almost the only issue on our foreign policy agenda." "In one sense I am worried that this is slipping away, as if problems were disappearing. I am grateful to the European Parliament for putting this issue on the agenda," Mogherini said.
She said that the Ukrainian issue will be also on the agenda of the Foreign Affairs Council next Monday, "exactly because I want to make sure that the attention does not get lower at this moment on the situation in Ukraine." The ministers of foreign affairs will also speak with their Ukrainian counterpart Vadym Prystaiko.
"The citizens of Ukraine have been calling for change in their country in these five years. They have been working for change in their country… And they have asked for a strong and close partnership with the European Union. They have not only asked for this, they have also worked for it," Mogherini said.
She said that the Ukraine-EU Association Agreement "is the most ambitious agreement that the European Union has ever developed with any partner." And it has already delivered an impressive increase, for instance, in trade. The EU has supported the creation of thousands of new jobs. The EU made travelling to the European Union easier for the people of Ukraine, thanks to visa liberalisation. The EU also has accompanied the reform of the security sector.
"The very simple message that I – and I would say that both of us [Mogherini and Prystaiko] – are proud to pass on Monday is this: the European Union and Ukraine have never been closer… This is an achievement that we can celebrate together," Mogherini said.