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President of European Commission calls for EU enlargement

In her annual State of the Union address, the President of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, proposed allocating 50 billion euros to Ukraine over the next four years, and called for EU enlargement.
Screenshot Ursula von der Leyen
President of European Commission calls for EU enlargement

On 13 September, the President of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, delivered her annual State of the Union (SOTEU) address to the European Parliament, the European Pravda reported.

The head of the European Commission has proposed extending temporary protection for Ukrainians in the European Union (EU), allocating 50 billion euros to Kyiv over the next four years for investments and reforms, and called for EU enlargement.

The European Commission proposes to extend temporary protection for Ukrainians who have found asylum in the EU (currently valid until March 2024).

“We will be on Ukraine’s side for as long as it takes. Four million Ukrainian migrants are now in the EU, and we welcome them,” Ursula von der Leyen said in her annual address.

Ursula von der Leyen also called for a significant enlargement of the EU to include not only Ukraine but also Moldova, several Western Balkan countries, and Georgia in the next few years, which would make the world’s largest free trade and free travel area even bigger.

“We know this is not an easy path. Accession to the EU is based on merit. The European Commission will always uphold this principle. It requires hard work and leadership. We see the great strides Ukraine has made since being granted candidate status. And we see the determination of other candidate countries to reform,” von der Leyen said. “History is now calling us to work to complete our Union. In a world where some are trying to pick off countries one by one, we cannot afford to leave our fellow Europeans behin,” von der Leyen added.

The European Parliament is currently debating whether to open a new phase in Kyiv’s EU accession path in December 2023, namely to formally begin negotiations on Ukraine’s membership in the European Union. One of the key conditions for this is the demonstration of Ukraine’s progress in the fight against corruption.

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