Federal Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock supports Ukraine’s accession to the EU and called for an efficient procedure: “It is now important not to proceed according to the formula, but to use this historic moment and make it clear to Ukraine with a view to its perspective: You belong in the middle the European Union,” said the Green politician on Monday on the sidelines of a meeting of EU foreign ministers in Luxembourg.
The challenges and tasks for the accession process are “incredibly great”, but nobody wants to look back in a few years and say: “How could we not use this course?”.
Baerbock also supported the EU Commission’s proposal to nominate Ukraine’s small neighbor Moldova as an EU accession candidate. “We have to see what situation Moldova is in these times,” she said. The government not only does everything to live European values in its own country, but also supports Ukraine, which has been attacked by Russia.
With a view to possible EU expansion, Baerbock spoke out in favor of adapting decision-making processes in the community. “It is now not just about putting more chairs in the European circle, but we have to strengthen the European Union together,” she said.
In perspective, this means that majority decisions must also be reached in foreign and security policy so that in the years and decades to come we have the strength we need to defend European values.
The EU Commission recommended on Friday that Ukraine and Moldova should be officially designated as candidates for accession to the European Union. The decision on candidate status must now be made by the governments of the 27 EU countries. Federal Chancellor Olaf Scholz and his colleagues are meeting in Brussels this Thursday to discuss the topic.
The federal government expects approval from the EU-27 at the EU summit, government officials said on Monday in Berlin. Georgia must therefore still meet conditions in order to also receive candidate status.
This is the first step in a lengthy accession process. The government emphasizes that it will ensure that there are no shortcuts along the way and that all criteria have to be met. But it is also clear that the EU also needs reform before it can join, government circles say. What is needed, for example, is the abolition of EU unanimity in foreign policy decisions. “The EU must get fit before it accepts more states.”
The government slowed down when the European Parliament called for a European convention to change the EU treaty. Many states see this proposal critically.