Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky/Picture: Reuters
European Union (EU) member states have decided to grant Ukraine the status of a candidate for accession to the EU.
On the 23rd (local time), the President of the European Council, Charles Michel, announced on Twitter that the heads of 27 member countries had decided on the status of EU membership candidates for Ukraine and Moldova at the summit held in Brussels, Belgium.
President Michel congratulated Ukraine and Moldova, calling it a “historical moment” and “Today is a significant step in your path to the EU”.
Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelensky later tweeted that it was a “very special and historic moment” and that “Ukraine’s future lies in the EU”.
Ukraine, which had been invaded by Russia on February 24, submitted an application for membership to the European Union on the 28th of the same month, four days later, and obtained the status of a candidate for membership in four months.
However, there are speculations that it may take years or decades for Ukraine to become a formal member state.
Even after the application and obtaining the status of a candidate country for official membership, the official membership negotiation process and approval must go through. Even if it acquires candidate country status, the negotiation for accession begins only when the governments of the 27 EU member states agree to it. In addition, approval of accession after negotiations requires the support of the governments of all EU member states, the European Commission and the European Parliament, and ratification by the parliaments of each member state.
Croatia, the last member of the EU, took about 10 years from the time it applied for membership to become an applicant country. Currently, in the case of Ukraine, it is known that some member countries are showing a lukewarm attitude toward the status of candidate countries, so it will take a long time to become an official member.
Kim Soo-young, reporter at Hankyung.com firstname.lastname@example.org
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