On 21, April, High Representative/Vice-President Borrell held a phone call with the Foreign Minister of Belarus, Vladimir Makei, to discuss the global response to the coronavirus pandemic, the EU’s support to Belarus in light of this challenge, and the wider EU-Belarus agenda.
High Representative/Vice-President Borrell acknowledged the steps taken by Belarus so far to slow the spread of the coronavirus in the country and urged to continue the efforts by following the World Health Organisation recommendations. He presented the comprehensive package that the EU has put together to support Belarus, along with the other Eastern Partnership countries, in addressing the short- and long-term socio-economic impact of the coronavirus outbreak. As part of the EU’s global response to the coronavirus outbreak, a support package for the six Eastern Partnership countries has been put in place totalling €80 million for immediate needs in the health sector and €883 million for short-term needs for socio-economic recovery. Out of this support, Belarus will specifically benefit from over €60 million of redirected bilateral funds.
The High Representative and the Foreign Minister also discussed the state of play of EU-Belarus relations. High Representative/Vice-President Borrell expressed his commitment to conclude EU-Belarus Partnership Priorities. Both looked forward to the entry into force of the visa facilitation and readmission agreements later this year, once ratification procedures are completed.
High Representative/Vice-President Borrell expressed strong support to Belarus’ sovereignty. He discussed with the Foreign Minister Belarus’s commitment to continuing dialogue on human rights and democracy, as well as the country’s continued active participation in the Eastern Partnership and its constructive role in the region.
High Representative/Vice-President Borrell reiterated his intention to visit Belarus once the conditions allow it.
- Publication date
- 22 April 2020
- Directorate-General for Neighbourhood and Enlargement Negotiations