Source: Republic of Lithuania
On 17 November, the Vice-Minister of Foreign Affairs of Lithuania Albinas Zananavičius took part in a video conference of European Affairs Ministers, which focused on the agenda for the European Council meeting to be held on 10-11 December. Ministers also took stock of the rule of law developments, discussed the EU enlargement, and the annual work programme of the European Commission.
The European Council will discuss the issue of climate change, the overall coordination effort that has been delivered in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, and trade. According to the Foreign Vice-Minister Zananavičius, Lithuania takes the EU’s climate change ambition very seriously. However, in order to achieve a higher emission reduction target for 2030, it is very important to ensure burden-sharing between member states, taking into account the specificities of each country, and levelling the playing field for producers in the EU in relation to third countries’ producers. Lithuania’s Foreign Vice-Minister also drew attention to the threat posed by the Ostrovets nuclear power plant.“Just a few days ago, there was an incident at the Ostrovets NPP. Therefore, the EU must demand that Belarus fully and without further ado ensure nuclear safety. The EU must take appropriate decisions restricting electricity generated in unsafe nuclear power plants in third countries access to the EU market,” said Zananavičius.As regards the effort to coordinate the COVID-19 response, the Foreign Vice-Minister called on the EU leaders to focus on concrete solutions in their discussions, incuding mutual recognition of COVID-19 tests in all EU countries, functional contact-tracing, productive manufacturing of vaccines, and equitable access for every country in the world to COVID-19 vaccines. The Foreign Vice-Minister also said that due attention should be paid to counter disinformation about response measures and the future vaccination against COVID-19.
For more information about the meeting, please read here.