Ukraine EU candidate, Draghi pushes gas price ceiling

The European Union, which has been challenged by Russia over its occupation of Ukraine, is responding with geopolitical action. Approved by the Council of EuropeUkraine and Moldova have the status of candidate countries for joining the European Union. Georgia also gets a “European perspective”, Until it makes some reforms, which will lead to duplication of the nomination. Faced with the war unleashed by Vladimir Putin’s Russia, the Union goes into a state of disrepair until a few months ago.

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French President Emmanuel Macron explains why he was unanimously chosen by European leaders: after NATO said “no” to joining Ukraine, “a vacuum was opened: if we did not extend a hand in Kiev and Chisinau”, a strategic and geopolitical vacuum would only be proposed by the European political community. Without the ‘second circle’ there would have been. He also told Ukraine, Moldova and Georgia in perspective that “the object of this European perspective is to recognize the position of the candidate country”.

Today is a historic day for the EUWe conclude from what the European Parliament asked four months ago, that since February 24, when Russia launched its brutal invasion of Ukraine, “the head of parliament, Roberto Metzola, visited the EU, the first political leader of the European Union. Kiev has always sided with Ukrainians fighting for our values.” Granted candidate status to Ukraine and Moldova at the request of the Commission to report to the Council on each stage of the process and its progress.

However, as for the EU, Democratic Secretary of State Enrico Letta, a former MEP, said in Brussels, “Globally and for Vladimir Putin, the strongest message is: Touching Ukraine is touching Europe. Such strong message has never been given.” Of course, from the status of a candidate country to joining the EU The road is too long: Kiev actually took many years to join the union. Macron recalled that this was only the beginning of a journey.

However, the geopolitical purpose of the decision taken today is not negligible, as these three countries have parts of their territory occupied by Russian troops: Ukraine, which is at war with Moscow, Donbass, Crimea and the South. Country; Moldova in Transnistria and Georgia in Abkhazia and South Ossetia.

However, this is not a question of immediate membership: the process is complex, lengthy and reversible. Albanian Prime Minister Eddie Rama was outraged by Bulgaria’s failure to initiate access talks due to bilateral disagreements over the status of the Bulgarian minority in Macedonia: Northern Macedonia, he recalled as a “candidate”. “18 years to join the EU, Albania eight years. So, we welcome Ukraine: it is good to be granted the status of a candidate country, but I hope the Ukrainian people do not have many illusions.”

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The leaders reiterated their financial support for Ukraine, saying that while the Commission was not in a great hurry to implement the 9 9 billion aid package, the printing of the money would also provide sufficient resources for the Kiev government to work. Financial technologies are being studied because these are guarantees and not monetary guarantees by member states: for internal reasons, Germany is less difficult to provide a billion than a guarantee.

The commitment to provide “more military support” to Kiev is reaffirmed as it enforces its “right to self-defense” against the Russian invaders. However, there is a technological response to the idea of ​​continuing to use the European peace facility, with almost half of its limitless resources being absorbed by military aid in Kiev.

Another major issue closely linked to the Ukrainian document is the Western Balkans and expansion, which, with this Council, many years after losing its center, has been strong on the front. Macron stressed that neighborhood issues were “more urgent than ever” because “war has returned to European soil.” A temporary summit dedicated to the former Yugoslav countries (Croatia will also join the euro next year) and Albania, which are not yet in the EU, was attended by leaders from Serbia, Albania and Albania. He noted the possibility of not going to Brussels, as the start of the last two countries’ merger talks has yet to be blocked by Bulgaria’s veto in Skopje, northern Macedonia.

While Ukraine and Moldova’s candidatures, which were triggered by the war unleashed by Moscow, are OK, the countries of the Balkans that have been in line for some time fear that they will be ignored: EU leaders wanted to reassure them. The region’s European perspective, but the Bulgarian veto has not yet been lifted (Grill Petkov’s government was upset yesterday, among others), which is why talks on joining Albania and northern Macedonia have not begun yet. In the face of Bulgaria’s veto, the Albanian Rama observed that if Vladimir Putin was “not in good health” because the “26 member states” were “weak”, the EU would certainly not be enjoying “good health”. In the results the leaders call for a “quick” deal with Sofia so that talks with Tirana and Skopje can be “opened without delay”.

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High Commissioner Joseph Borel is also angry that he did not hide his “disappointment” at how the expansion continues: “things are not going well”, he reiterated that the consensus rule is “a big problem”. Prevents “decisions” from being made. Although the Republic has made some progress in recent years, a solution is expected for Bosnia-Herzegovina in Georgia’s ways, with the candidacy perspective that a series of reforms must be made first. The results call on Sarajevo in Brussels to “move decisively on the European path” and “expedite the implementation of the promises made on June 12”. However, the EU-Western Balkan summit did not go well, the final press conference was officially canceled for time reasons, and EU sources speak of “open” discussion.

Heads of state and government discussed how to restart the expansion process and, above all, to further integrate countries that are at some point in the access process with the EU. The third geopolitical topic, discussed at dinner, was the second relaxation, based on Emmanuel Macron’s proposal for the formation of an expanded Europe, that is, the gap between the EU and the Russian Federation, and the formation of a European political community. Circle around the union. It also aims to identify countries that need to have closer ties with the Union. Today, however, the euro summit will take place in an inclusive format, with ECB President Christine Lagarde and Eurogroup President Pascal Donohue discussing the economic situation.

In this context Leaders will definitely talk about inflation and energyAn issue that is not officially on the agenda, but there is Fully returned by Prime Minister Mario Draghi. Chief Decisively today, gas prices are pushing on the roof. A senior official points out that there are still some EU leaders who think that interfering in a market that is already “troubled” could create more problems. The possibility of introducing a ceiling on gas prices, in a passage referring to the use of energy as a weapon and recalling the decisions of the Council of Europe on May 30-31, gives the Commission a mandate. This is possible. But this is not enough for Tracy, who is well acquainted with the functioning of the Brussels buildings.

Italy is pressing not to waste any time: EU sources on Wednesday noted that “September-October” is the time when the energy front can make decisions, but by then winter will be upon us, while gas stocks will be replenished. Summer: The problem of high gas prices, benefited by Russia, must be urgently addressed. Hollande’s Prime Minister Mark Rutte is halfway through, he’s always been against setting the price limit: he said he was not “emotionally or in principle against” the hack hypothesis, but feared it would not work. . However, he added that this was an “under assessment” measure.

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Knowing how Brussels could be affected, Draghi did not deal with the overconfident Italian premiers (many remember he ‘scrambled’ Van der Leyne on vaccine-related data at his first Council of Europe), pushing the point. On the accelerator. He called for the convening of the Extraordinary European Council on Energy in July, and the commission to review the price ceiling was issued late last month and so far nothing has been found: think about talking about it again. Autumn, four months later, it was almost a disgrace. However, it was Charles Michael who decided whether to convene the council or not.

Finally, the leaders will discuss the outcome of the conference on the future of Europe, leaving the task of handling the recommendations to other EU institutions. But in general, EU evidence predicts that there will be no hunger for reopening contracts, which will take a long time and there will be a consensus among the 27, or they will not engage in a discussion of “institutional issues”.

In the discussions, but not in the conclusions, the Kaliningrad Enclave (or Exclave, to be more precise) is mentioned, and after Russia threatened to have consequences for Lithuanian civilians, it decided to use EU sanctions on trains running between Vilnius as well. Ancient Koniksberg and Russia. Lithuanian Foreign Minister Gabriel Landsbergs recalled that EU sanctions from December would apply to oil and derivatives. High Representative Joseph Borel said the SEA, the EU’s diplomatic service, would work to refine the guidelines that Lithuania has eagerly used so as not to disrupt freight traffic between Kaliningrad and Russia. Lithuanian President Kidanas Nousada also agreed that EU guidelines should be subject to ‘micro-tuning’. So we are working to prevent the situation from escalating and having far-reaching consequences.

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