"We discussed a wide range of issues of Ukraine-EU relations. The main focus was on four issues: security situation; EU’s assistance to Ukraine amid the threat of further military invasion by the Russian Federation; trade and economic relations; and prospects for Ukraine's accession to the European Union and Ukraine’s implementation of the Association Agreement," Shmyhal said at a joint press briefing with Dombrovskis on January 31, an Ukrinform correspondent reported.
The Head of Government added that Ukraine appreciated the assistance provided by international partners, including financial. He also thanked for the sanctions that the partner countries imposed on Russia to deter aggression against Ukraine.
Shmyhal pointed out that painful sanctions were the most effective tool able to stop Russia’s further aggression. According to him, this issue was also coordinated during the meeting with Dombrovskis.
The PM added that the discussion confirmed the common views on overcoming the security challenges facing today by Ukraine and the entire transatlantic world.
"We want peace, not war, but at the same time we do everything possible to strengthen the defense and economic stability of our state," he said.
According to Shmyhal, he informed Dombrovskis about 63% progress of Ukraine's implementation of the Association Agreement and stressed that Ukraine was ready to continue working hard in this area.
"Of course, we want to hear specific dates in response to the progress of the Association Agreement: when Ukraine will be able to become a candidate country, when Ukraine will be able to join the European Union," Shmyhal said.
In addition, the Prime Minister stressed that Dombrovskis' visit was a gesture of strong support from the EU for Ukraine and a clear signal that the active work on the economic and trade agenda continued despite the difficult security situation.
As Shmyhal noted, the threat from the Russian Federation due to the build-up of its troops is currently quite high, but the authorities do not overstate this threat as the build-up of troops does not mean the formation of strike groups. In addition, Shmyhal noted that the sanctions developed by the European Union and the United States of America acted as a deterrent.
"Of course, our military developed both state defense plans and plans for individual operations. They are classified, so I will not disclose them publicly," Shmyhal said.
The key factor is the trust of the Ukrainian society in the Ukrainian army, he stressed.
"From the point of view of strengthening our defense potential, we, of course, expect concrete assistance from the EU Member States so that Ukraine will be able to defend itself," Shmyhal said.
As reported, Executive Vice President of the European Commission Valdis Dombrovskis was on a visit to Kyiv on January 31.
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