Remarks by José Manuel Barroso on Ukraine
Type: Press conference - summary
Brussels - EC/Berlaymont
On 3 February 2014, José Manuel Barroso, President of the EC, made a declaration during a press briefing on the situation in Ukraine. The Euromaidan is a wave of ongoing demonstrations and civil unrest in Ukraine, which began on the night of 21 November 2013 with public protests demanding closer European integration. The scope of the protests has since evolved, with many calls for the resignation of President Viktor Yanukovych and his government.
Only the original language version is authentic and it prevails in the event of its differing from the translated versions.
||Exterior view of the Berlaymont building in Brussels
||Soundbite by José Manuel Barroso, President of the EC, (in ENGLISH): The first priority in Ukraine now is the end of violence and also the end of intimidation; we should try to get a political solution to the crisis. That is why I've been saying and I've been very clear to President Yanukovych, recently that a genuine dialogue needs to take place so that a common platform can be reached between the government and the opposition that can bring stability to the country and that can bring the country to the next democratic elections.
||Cutaway of a cameraman
||Soundbite by José Manuel Barroso (in ENGLISH): The EU has proven its commitment to Ukraine in concrete deeds. We are the biggest international donor to Ukraine. Since Ukraine's independence, the EU has provided 3.3 billion Euros in grants and further 10.5 billion in loans and this trough just the European Commission budget because we could add to this bilateral assistance from individual Member States.
||General view of the press briefing
||Soundbite by José Manuel Barroso (in ENGLISH): We don't agree with the idea that for a country to join this agreement we should pay something because this conception is completely wrong. In fact our big offer to Ukraine is the agreement itself, we are offering Ukraine access to the biggest market in the world that is the EU internal market; That is the offer and by the way a very generous offer because it is not symmetrical, we are offering them almost unlimited access from day one while they will open their borders on a progressive phase taking 15 years
||Cutaway of a journalist
||Soundbite by José Manuel Barroso (in ENGLISH): The idea that to sign an agreement, we should pay something, it is simply wrong and that is why the EU and Member States very clearly in Vilnius stated that we are not going to a bidding competition to say who pays more for a signature of Ukraine; I don't this is proper in terms of relation between EU and other countries.