Foreign Vice-Minister A. Zananavičius: We support European Commission’s decision to focus on ecological and digital transitions
On 25 February, the Vice-Minister of Foreign Affairs of Lithuania Albinas Zanavičius attended the General Affairs Council in Brussels, which discussed legislative work in 2020 and multiannual programming.
The meeting discussed the European Commission’s 2020 Work Programme. The document focuses on ecological and digital transformation to tackle climate change, digitalization and migration, emphasizes the strengthening of the EU’s role as a global leader, and highlights the need for the EU to defend the principle of the rule of law.
“Lithuania supports the Commission’s decision to focus on ecological and digital transitions, and to strengthen the EU’s role in the world. On the other hand, we call for more ambition in order to promote economic and social convergence, infrastructure development, energy objectives, and the Eastern Neighborhood initiative,” said the Foreign Vice-Minister A. Zananavičius.
Ministers also started preparations for the European Council meeting of 27 and 28 March by discussing an annotated draft agenda.
“Particular emphasis has to be laid upon the strengthening of the internal market of the European Union, making it fit for the digital age and removing the existing barriers in the internal market, especially for services. It is also crucial for the EU to open accession negotiations with Albania and North Macedonia, while a revision of the EU’s enlargement methodology should not hamper the accession process," said Lithuania’s Foreign Vice-Minister.
The Council also adopted a decision authorising the opening of negotiations for a new partnership with the United Kingdom and negotiating directives that constitute a mandate to the Commission for the negotiations. The formal negotiations with the UK are set to begin in early March. The future agreement should enter into force on 1 January 2021.