President of the Council of Europe Charles Michel stressed that the video conference’s main topic would be countering the third wave of the pandemic, which has already covered European countries.
The development of a new EU strategy towards Russia has been postponed until the next personal meeting of the heads of state of the community due to the exacerbation of the coronavirus pandemic in Europe. The President of the European Council, Charles Michel, wrote about this on Tuesday in an invitation to EU leaders to the summit on March 25-26, held online due to coronavirus restrictions.
President of the European council, “about relations with Russia: I believe it is my objective to inform leaders about the strategic deliberations we had at our next personal meeting on the outcome of my interactions with the Russian President Vladimir Putin. (the next EU summit is to be held in Brussels at the end of June – TASS note),” letter.
The last conversation between Putin and Michel on the telephone took place on March 22. Specifically, the interviewer talks about global problems and the probability of using the Russian Sputnik V coronavirus vaccine in the EU.
Revision of relations with Turkey, which was planned to be held at the recent summit, Michel proposed to discuss “with an eye to the next meeting in June.” Accordingly, the adoption of specific practical decisions is also postponed for three months.
Michel stressed that the main topic of the current videoconference of the heads of state would be countering the third wave of the pandemic, which has already covered European countries. “The top priority should be to accelerate vaccination and improve predictability and transparency in the supply of vaccines,” he wrote, thus confirming that the summit will consider extending the timing of the export control mechanism for coronavirus drugs.
Another section of the discussion on combating COVID-19 will discuss the European Commission’s proposal for the introduction of a “green digital certificate of vaccination.” As expected, the conversation will be preliminary. It will not allow clarifying the prospects for this project since on Tuesday, the European Commission itself admitted that “a tremendous amount of work remains to be done to create European vaccination certificates.” In the best case, the documents will appear by June.
As part of the discussion of recovery from the pandemic, Michel invited EU leaders to discuss “accelerating the European economy’s digitalization.” He did not specify that a lockdown objectively facilitates the rapid growth of the digital services sector in most states, which in the coming days is likely to become more challenging against the backdrop of a rapidly worsening epidemiological situation in the community.
Michel also confirmed that for the first time, US President Joe Biden would take part in the videoconference of EU leaders, with whom they will discuss “strengthening the transatlantic unity.” “President Biden will be welcomed on Thursday evening with his vision of our future cooperation, added President of the European council.