State Secretary Ružička in Luxembourg on Cohesion Policy, Common Agricultural Policy and Brexit

State Secretary Ružička in Luxembourg on Cohesion Policy, Common Agricultural Policy and Brexit

9.4.2019 | Aktivity štátnych tajomníkov | Slovensko a Európska únia

On Tuesday (9 April 2019), the Ministers of European Affairs of the EU member states met in Luxembourg at the meeting of the General Affairs Council. The Slovak Republic was represented by František Ružička, State Secretary of the Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs of the Slovak Republic.

The main topic of the meeting was the Multiannual Financial Framework for 2021-2027. On this occasion, the ministers discussed the Cohesion Policy, the Common Agricultural Policy in the context of the future EU budget. State Secretary Ružička emphasized the need for enough flexibility with regard to the implementation of the cohesion policy. “There is no fit-for-all measure that we can apply to everyone. For example, in the area of social affairs, it is necessary to provide for the funding of infrastructure projects to support the development of housing and community centres,” stated Ružička. Regarding the Common Agricultural Policy, the Slovak Republic advocates taking into account the scale of rural nature areas of member states when taking decisions on any cuts of funds for rural development. “It is not fair to treat the predominantly rural states in the same way as the states that are largely urban,” argued Ružička.

The agenda of the Council meeting also included an item on the action against Hungary and Poland owing to their violations of the rule of law. The European Commission informed the ministers about the current developments regarding this issue. The Council also endorsed conclusions on the sustainability of the EU until 2030, the goal of which is to translate the Agenda for Sustainable Development until 2030 to EU policies. During the working lunch, the ministers informed each other about the actions taken in their countries with regard to the preparations of the elections to the European Parliament and discussed the possibilities of supporting pro-European moods in their societies and the steps taken to encourage election turnout.

The preparations of the extraordinary meeting of the European Council  (Article 50) which will take place on Wednesday, 10 April 2019) were discussed according to Article 50. “It is our preference to have a withdrawal agreement in place with the UK. At the same time, we wish that the unity of the 27 EU member states will be preserved. The United Kingdom will be an important partner for the preservation of strategic relations with the EU also after its withdrawal. The Slovak Republic holds a flexible position with regards to the issue of extending the UK’s withdrawal period from the EU, given that clear rules will be set. The approach of the Slovak Republic takes into consideration the needs of the citizens, so that the negative impact of Brexit will be the smallest possible,” concluded Ružička. The Slovak Republic is also ready for the possibility of the UK’s withdrawal without an agreement, and the National Council of the Slovak Republic has already endorsed the necessary legislation, the so-called lex Brexit.


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