Head of government in Chisinau Natalia Gavrilița held talks in Brussels today with the prime ministers of Ukraine and Georgia, Denis Șmîhal and Irakli Garibașvili, in the so-called “Associate Trio of Prime Ministers” format.
In addition to trilateral talks, the three leaders of the governments of some Eastern Partnership countries met in turn with the President of the European Council, Charles Michel, with the Head of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen and, finally, with the President of the European Parliament David Sassoli.
To prepare for this, the three had already met a month ago, in Tbilisi, on October 25.
The forum of the three was formalized this year in May, in Kiev, by the foreign ministers of the three countries. The main goal of this “Associated Trio” is for the three countries to join the European Union together. Purpose that remains, for the moment, very distant. Ukraine is the country that was at the origin of this trio, which so far has not received much encouragement from the EU, within which the initiative is supported mainly by the European People’s Party (EPP) and the Baltic countries.
The three heads of government visit Brussels just two weeks before the Eastern Partnership Summit on 15 December.
Moldova, Georgia and Ukraine are now seeking to be seen by the EU as having a separate status from the other three members of the Eastern Partnership. Indeed, the other three Eastern Partnership countries are either outright dictatorships (Azerbaijan and Belarus) or in a state of chronic instability, such as Armenia, which, on top of that, has joined Putin’s Eurasian Customs Union.
Georgia, Ukraine and Moldova also differ in that in addition to their tendency to become closer to the West, they also have parts of the territory occupied by Russia.
Moldova has a status of neutrality, but Georgia and Ukraine also obtained from NATO in 2008 the promise that one day they will be accepted into the Western Military Alliance.
The President of the European Parliament, David Sassoli, had already met yesterday, Monday, November 29, with the President of the Parliament of Moldova, Igor Grosu, with whom he signed a Memorandum of Understanding.
“We appreciate the high level of assistance provided in the context of overcoming the effects of the pandemic crisis, including the approval of the Economic Recovery Plan worth 600 million euros, which is already being implemented,” Grosu said yesterday.