On June 6, the Valdai Discussion Club held its fifth annual session within the framework of SPIEF-2019, titled “A New Europe: What Is Russia to Expect?”
The European Union has entered a period of fundamental change; the very model of European integration is changing. The established rules governing the relationship between the Europe and the USA are fading away. Recently, European Parliament elections were held, which also marked the beginning of a new era. The key question is: how significant are the changes? Are they fundamental in nature or are they merely a combination of 'cosmetic elements'? What will the European Union be? What is the future of Euro-bureaucracy?
EU-Russia relations are experiencing uneasy times. The legal framework for this relationship remains the Agreement on Partnership and Cooperation (APC), and more than 20 years have passed since it was signed in June 1994. In July 2008, negotiations began on a New Basic Agreement, which should replace the current APC. However, negotiations were frozen at the initiative of the EU. When and if they're renewed, Russia intends, in the future agreement, to pay special attention to a number of new issues, including Russia's accession to the WTO and the dynamically developing process of Eurasian economic integration. Since the signing of the APC, both Russia and the EU have gone through important political, economic and social changes. The new agreement is intended to reflect these changes and take a qualitative step forward.
The session's participants presented their scenarios for the development of relations between Russia and the European Union, and discussed the desired model for relations at the new stage, taking into account all the contradictions and changes.
Dimitrios VELANIS, Special Advisor to the Prime Minister of Greece
Fyodor LUKYANOV, Research Director of the Foundation for Development and Support of the Valdai Discussion Club
Péter SZIJJÁRTÓ, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade of Hungary
Mario MEHREN, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Wintershall DEA
Vladimir CHIZHOV, Permanent Representative of the Russian Federation to the European Union