President of the Republic of Lithuania President of the Republic of Lithuania

The President: the Eastern Partnership needs a new EU strategy

2020-06-12

President Gitanas Nausėda welcomed the guests and participants of the webinar organized by the Office of the President of the Republic of Lithuania at the Eastern Europe Studies Centre.

The webinar is organized to discuss the future of the Eastern Partnership Initiative in preparation for the approaching Eastern Partnership Summit on June 18.

In his welcome address, the President highlighted the need to consolidate efforts and take the Eastern Partnership policy to a new level. According to the President, the Eastern Partnership needs much stronger driving force and enthusiasm than the one we see now.

“The Eastern Partnership definitely needs a new impetus and enthusiasm from the European Union showing a strategic direction. This direction – at least for me – is European integration of the Eastern Partnership countries.  Maybe it will not happen tomorrow, or even next year, but we and they should know that the direction is the European Union. Geopolitical changes do not happen overnight”, said the President in his welcome address and added that his predecessor President Valdas Adamkus actively contributed to the launch of this European initiative and now this initiative has reached a level of maturity and was ready for change.

The President is convinced that new political and legal instruments are needed to encourage the Eastern Partnership countries to implement ambitious and effective reforms. The President emphasized that being a promoter of Western values in the region, Lithuania showed the initiative and leadership to revive the priorities of the initiative and to actively raise them at the highest level in the EU. President Nausėda has repeatedly stressed that the Eastern Partnership policy was among his foreign policy priorities.

According to the President, the Eastern Partnership needed an ambitious long-term strategy for deeper cooperation between the EU and Eastern Partnership countries and a specific EU action plan. For their part, the Eastern Partnership countries must show a strong orientation towards the Western democratic values.

The President believes that the goal of European integration referred to as a fundamental change in the Eastern Europe can only be achieved through intensive efforts, hard work and strong will.

Ideological godfathers of the Eastern Partnership policy, Swedish Foreign Minister Carl Bildt and Member of the European Parliament Anna Fotyga, shared the formation and development of the idea of the Eastern Partnership and discussed the changes of the initiative over the past decade. The ambitions of the Eastern Partnership policy as well as its long-term vision and Russia’s influence on the choices of the Eastern Partnership countries were discussed at the event.

The webinar was attended by Sweden’s Minister for Foreign Affairs Carl Bildt and Lithuanian Minister of Foreign Affairs Linas Linkevičius as well as Members of the European Parliament Andrius Kubilius, Petras Auštrevičius and Anna Fotyga.

The President‘s Communication Group

Last updated 2020.06.12 16:23

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