Eurointergration: On January 1, 2020 started the Croatian Presidency of the EU Council, the leading institution of the European Union. This was reported by a correspondent of the European Truth.
The Balkan state representative will chair the EU Council for 6 months, after which he will transfer the German presidency.
The presiding state can influence the formation of the agenda of this institution, also known as the Council of Ministers of the European Union, as well as, with some exceptions, chairs meetings of the EU Council.
Ahead of the New Year’s Eve, the European Union approved the Croatian presidency’s program, which is called “Strong Europe in a world full of challenges” and has four priorities: Europe that develops, Europe that unites, Europe that protects, and influential Europe.
Contrary to expectations which were officially proclaimed by Ukrainian Vice Prime Minister Dmytro Kuleba, Ukraine has not been included in the official priorities of the presidency. There is no mention of Ukraine or the Eastern Partnership in the short program on the EU Council website.
At the same time, in a detailed 52-page document written in Croatian, drafted by the presidency, Ukraine is mentioned twice – both in the context of the EaP and as an important bilateral direction for the European Union.
“The Croatian Chairmanship will continue to work towards the implementation of the Eastern Partnership policy objectives and continue to develop cooperation with Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, Moldova and Ukraine, supporting reform processes, especially in terms of the challenges they face. During the Croatian Chairmanship the priorities and objectives for the period after 2020 will be discussed, in this context the Eastern Partnership Summit will be held.
Measures to fully overcome the crisis in Ukraine and reduce the consequences of the conflict will also be a priority for the Croatian Chairmanship.
The Croatian government is chaired by former MEP and the head of the parliamentary committee for cooperation with Ukraine, Andriy Plenkovych. It is not yet known who will be the head of state during the presidency. On 5 January, the second round of the presidential election will be held in Croatia, during which the current Croatian president will be opposed by the left-wing prime minister.