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Tag: European Union

How can Kyiv and Brussels improve their relations?

The Ukraine-EU summit, which took place on July 12th, brought Ukrainians back to a reality that they did not want to admit. EU leaders refused to include the words from the preamble of the EU–Ukraine Association Agreement that “the European Union acknowledges the European aspirations of Ukraine and welcomes its European choice” in the joint statement, which is why it was not adopted at all. According to the DW source, the Netherlands firmly opposed such wording, while being indirectly supported by Germany and France.

August 9, 2017 - Nagornyak Ivan

How will Tusk’s re-appointment affect Polish politics?

Poland’s right-wing government suffered its most high profile defeat to date when it failed to prevent the re-appointment of Donald Tusk, whom it accused of interfering in Polish domestic politics, as European Council president, raising concerns that the country was becoming isolated on the European Union’s periphery. Opinion polls show a slump in the ruling party’s lead and boost for the main opposition grouping but it is unclear whether this is a political turning point or short-term blip.

April 7, 2017 - Aleks Szczerbiak

The European quandary of Tusk’s re-election

On March 9th, Donald Tusk was re-elected as the President of the European Council for the second time despite the opposition of his home country, Poland. His candidacy and eventual reappointment for a second term has been challenged by the Polish government led by Prime Minister Beata Szydło. He will hold the position until the end of 2019.

March 21, 2017 - Antonio Scancariello

Georgia: Unpicking the Soviet past

Georgia is among those few former Soviet countries that fought for independence. The euphoric sense of freedom in the wake of the dissolution of the Soviet Union, however, started to slip away soon as the disturbing reality of the Soviet legacy took over before Georgians’ eyes. Living for nearly 70 years under the Russian yoke had completely incapacitated their ability to self-govern. Inexperienced in how to build up state institutions from scratch in a way which would safeguard the inclusivity and diversity of their traditionally heterogeneous society, Georgians became embroiled in a string of ethnic and civil wars throughout the 1990s. The initial attempt to embrace freedom of expression, market economy and other western values, so alien to the Soviet system, backfired as Georgia slowly descended into poverty and chaos.

March 16, 2017 - Shalva Dzidziguri

Energy union. Time for delivery

If the European Union’s ambition is to attain secure, sustainable, competitive and affordable energy for every European, member states should agree on how, when, and to what extent they would be ready to ensure energy solidarity and transparency among them. In the case of natural gas, this could well require strengthening the European Commission’s supervisory powers, at least for some time, in order to accelerate completion of the internal energy market and improving coordination of interactions with third countries, such as LNG exporters.

July 18, 2016 - Jarosław Ćwiek-Karpowicz

The future of Ukraine is the future of Europe

I often say that what happened in Polish-Ukrainian relations after the fall of the Berlin Wall was a geopolitical revolution. I compare it to the French and German reconciliation in the 1950s. While that laid the foundation for a new post-war Europe, a Polish-Ukrainian reconciliation creates the possibility of this construction extending further East. Moreover, the stakes in Polish-Ukrainian relations always were, and indeed continue to be, about more than just Poland and Ukraine.

July 13, 2016 - Yaroslav Hrytsak

EU Association Agreements can become engines of change, even if they do not lead to membership

An interview with Barbara Lippert, Director of Research in the German Institute for International and Security Affairs (SWP). Interviewer: Agnieszka Pikulicka-Wilczewska.

July 6, 2016 - Barbara Lippert

Resolving borders and building bridges

When we think back to June 1991, we see great value in the treaty between Poland and Germany. It was a new beginning in relations between the two states. Yet, the treaty was more than bilateral, it was also a building bloc in the construction of a new Europe, without which there would be no united Germany, NATO or the European Union. Every time I cross the Polish-German border, which nowadays is merely a formal line, seeing as there are no controls or checkpoints, I feel like a free European. I feel the positive aspect of history and the great decisions that led us here. I write this because as a teenager, I experienced a completely different reality, a continent divided by the iron curtain. Even in the 1990s, a time when Poland was already free and Germany had united, cross-border travel was not as pleasant an experience as it is today, because the Oder and Nysa rivers marked the periphery of the European Union. At that time, we still had to wait at the border and go through border control.

June 16, 2016 - Basil Kerski

Equal partners in a united Europe

Interview with Hans Gert Pöttering, President of the European Parliament ret. and Chairman of the Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung. Interviewer: Maciej Makulski MACIEJ MAKULSKI: Can we, as Europeans, be proud citizens of the European Union these days? HANS GERT PÖTTERING: I can only give you an answer from my own political experience. When I was elected to the European […]

June 5, 2016 - Maciej Makulski

Bulgaria on course to diversify gas supply

Bulgaria has recently moved closer to diversifying its sources of natural gas supply. This time, it seems it may be happening with less geopolitical grandeur and fanfare. After years of flirting with Russia over its monster pipeline projects on the Balkans, a 182km long gas interconnector link with Greece may do the trick. The source? Most probably Azerbaijani gas.

June 2, 2016 - Kamen Kraev

EU-Ukraine Trade Agreement. Challenges and Opportunities

In April 2015 Ukraine was granted free access to the European Union’s internal market due to the EU’s unilateral elimination of both tariff and non-tariff barriers. In 2015, 98.1 per cent of EU’s tariff duties were cancelled under the provisions of the Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Agreement (DCFTA) with Ukraine. In practice this means that Ukrainian producers can now sell their products to EU customers without paying custom tariffs on most goods. Apart from simple trade liberalisation through the removal of custom tariffs, the DCFTA also introduced the reduction or removal of non-tariff barriers, the liberalisation of an investment regime, the liberalisation of trade in services and the harmonisation and mutual recognition of regulative and institutional frameworks related to trade and investment.  

May 30, 2016 - Maryna Kornilova

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