Prime Minister of Ukraine Denys Shmyhal has stated that Ukraine already meets a significant number of criteria for country candidates for accession to the European Union.
As Shmyhal posted on Facebook, this week the European Commission recommended granting Ukraine the status of a candidate for EU membership. The final decision will be made at the summit on June 23-24.
„It is important to understand that the EU did not give Ukraine this status as a present. In recent years, we have done a lot of work to reform our country. And although there is still a long way to go, our European partners have objectively assessed all achievements. The European Commission also noted that the Government of Ukraine during the war demonstrated an amazing level of institutional strength, determination, and ability to function,” Shmyhal stressed.
According to him, the candidate status for Ukraine means the legal consolidation of the European future.
„This means that Ukraine will not just be able to join the EU one day potentially, but that the process has been launched, and it [Ukraine] already meets a significant number of criteria for candidates,” the Prime Minister noted.
Preparations for membership will include the completion of a comprehensive transformation in all areas. In this, according to Shmyhal, Ukraine will be supported by the European Commission, providing consultations and other assistance.
Ukraine will also become a full-fledged member of EU programs and initiatives open to both EU and candidate countries. As a candidate country, Ukraine will have greater opportunities to have its voice heard in EU policy-making.
„By gaining candidate status and starting to move towards membership, Ukraine will become more attractive to investors. The business climate will be closer to the conditions in the EU – investors will operate on predictable market and have their business protected. Attractiveness for investors will also need reliable security guarantees after the victory over Russia,” Shmyhal stressed.
Ukraine will have access to financial assistance for countries preparing to join the EU, Instrument for Pre-Accession Assistance (IPA). Such assistance may be provided through grants, investments or as technical assistance.
„Moreover, accumulating funds for the reconstruction of Ukraine today through a special Solidarity Trust Fund, the EU will treat such investments not as the post-war reconstruction of a third country, but investing in the welfare of a potential future EU member,” Shmyhal emphasized.
„The movement to the EU will allow us to modernize our country, and we are interested in making all the changes as soon as possible. Ukraine is Europe and Ukraine will soon be a member of the European Union,” he added.