Press-releases

14.07.2006

The Third annual meeting of the international network for Ukraine in European Union “Yalta European Strategy” (YES)

 The Third annual meeting of the international network for Ukraine in EU "Yalta European Strategy" opened on 13 July in a conference hall of the Kiev Premier Palace Hotel, hosting a record-breaking number of influential figures of Ukrainian, European and U.S. political elite.
Among the guests and participants of this meeting, there were above 150 policy-makers, public figures and diplomats from Europe and USA, including members of parliaments and EU foreign ministers, heads of EU diplomatic missions in Ukraine, deputies of European Parliament.  Policy-makers and officials represented Great Britain, France, Germany, Poland, Ireland, Slovenia, Romania and Croatia.
The well-known politicians from Europe and Ukraine became participants of the YES meeting, among them: Ivo Sander, prime-minister of Croatia; Alexander Kwasniewski, ex-President of Poland; Carlos Pascual, former U.S. Ambassador in Ukraine; Strobe Talbott, former US State Secretary, president of the Brookings University; Boris Nemtsov, member of the political council of Russia's Right Alliance. From Ukrainian party, the reps of all the leading political forces and institutes took part in the opening of the YES annual meeting, namely: Oleg Rybachuk, chief of the Presidential administration; Yury Yekhanurov, acting Prime Minister, Member of Parliament (Our Ukraine bloc); Aleksander Moroz, one of the leaders of anti-crisis coalition, speaker of the Parliament, and leader of the Socialist party.  Yulia Timoshenko bloc was represented by the Member of Parliament Dmitry Vydrin.
YES board member Stephen Byers, Member of Parliament (UK) opened the meeting. President of the European Commission Jose Barroso delivered a video speech to the YES meeting participants where he specified the following: "The EU firmly supports Ukraine in its reform efforts. Much work remains ahead of us. The Action Plan is guiding us in our tasks. Here are some objectives in our common agenda: strengthening the rule of law and reforming the judiciary; fighting against corruption and   improving the business climate; achieving the WTP accession; finalizing the negotiations for the readmission and visa facilitation agreements; the transforming the Memorandum of Understanding on energy cooperation into concrete action.  
President of the European commission underlined that Ukraine's steady successes facilitate strengthening and deepening of its relations with the European Union. "I look forward to 2007, - Jose Barroso said, - and the start of negotiations for an enhanced agreement to replace the current Partnership and Cooperation Agreement. That agreement must base on our common European values, must be innovative and comprehensive".
The speeches of Ukrainian policy-makers at the solemn ceremony of the opening of the YES Third annual meeting showed that the need for Ukraine's integration was shared by all political forces of the country.
President of Ukraine Victor Yuschenko, in his address to the meeting, noted: "Ukraine in no circumstances will change its strategic European choice, which is literally is a core of the country's advance. Our Euro integration course is irreversible, and this is admitted by all responsible political forces of Ukraine". Victor Yuschenko specified as well that Ukraine needs new ideas and innovative approaches for the efficient implementation of the European integration strategy. The President expressed his hope that the meeting would become a generator of new initiatives that would be useful for the European community.
In opinion of Ukrainian and international analysts, the high representative level clearly demonstrated not merely Europe's objective interest in Ukraine and in issues related to Ukraine's European integration, but also the real achievements of YES as the most powerful public initiation of nowadays. Stephen Byers, specifically, stressed that those initiatives supported and advanced Ukraine's timely entry to EU through an effective and constructive dialogue on the integration-related issues which are organized in Ukraine and in the European Union.
Alexander Moroz in his speech emphasized that such representative level of the meeting means trust to the country. He also said, ‘We will prove that this trust and this interest to our country are not accidental'.
Victor Pinchuk, founder and member of YES Board, specified that aspirations of Ukraine could give more than the very membership of Ukraine in the EU. Specifically, he said:" I consider that Ukraine's rapprochement to the European Union is an inspiring political project that could unite the Ukrainian society and inspire our leaders for modernization of our country along these lines. The EU membership perspectives present a mighty driving power which will stimulate our political elites that confront the painful, still needed reforms.
"Yalta European Strategy" (YES) is an independent international organization which brings together high-level participants in Ukraine and internationally:  policy-makers, business leaders, thinkers, researchers and journalists with the view of facilitation of Ukraine and EU rapprochement.
The wording of speeches and news could be found on the site: www.yes-ukraine.org.
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