Joint press statement following the 5th Association Council meeting between the EU and Ukraine

The EU envisaged sending an assessment mission to Ukraine in the beginning of 2019
Joint press statement following the 5th Association Council meeting between the EU and Ukraine
17 December 13:52 2018 Print This Article

The European Union and Ukraine held the fifth meeting of the Association Council on 17 December 2018 in Brussels. The Association Council took place after the first full year since the entry into force of the EU-Ukraine Association Agreement (including its Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Area) on 1 September 2017.

The Association Council expressed its utmost concern regarding the escalation at the Kerch Strait and the Azov Sea, and Russia’s violation of international law, as well as further militarisation in the area. The European Union will continue to follow closely the situation and is determined to act appropriately, in close coordination with its international partners. The Association Council discussed possibilities of providing targeted EU support to the Azov region. The EU stood ready to adopt measures to strengthen further its support, in particular in favour of the affected areas of Ukraine. In this context, the EU envisaged sending an assessment mission to Ukraine in the beginning of 2019.

The EU recognised Ukraine’s aspiration to ensure full energy market integration once the reforms are completed. At the same time, both sides agreed on the need for stepping up the implementation of existing commitments in the energy sector. The parties looked forward to the updating of the Association Agreement’s energy Annex XXVII to reflect the evolving EU acquis. The Association Council reaffirmed Ukraine’s role as a strategic transit country for gas, ensuring affordable, secure and sustainable supplies to the EU. The Association Council stressed the urgency of completing the unbundling of the respective transmission system operators in the gas and electricity sectors, in line with the EU acquis. The Association Council welcomed the appointment of the new supervisory board of Ukrenergo. At the same time it expected further steps to be taken in the coming months to ensure that the corporatisation and certification of Ukrenergo are brought to a successful completion. The Association Council also welcomed the progress made in establishing the Energy Efficiency Fund.

The Association Council agreed to intensify cooperation in the area of justice and home affairs within the framework of the Association Agreement. Areas of mutual interest where tangible results could be achieved may include Integrated Border Management, national asylum systems and biometrics-based identity management, countering money laundering and financing of terrorism, fight against organized and serious international crimes.

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