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Priorities of the Czech Presidency in the Council of the European Union in 2022

The Czech Presidency of the Council of the EU will focus on five foreign affairs priorities: Ukraine, energy, defense, economy, and democracy. Geographic priorities that Czechia will focus on during its presidency include Eastern Europe, Western Balkans, the Indo-Pacific, and the Sahel.

“In just a few days, Czechia will take over its historical second presidency for the Council of the EU. For our foreign policy, it will be one of the most important events in the last several years, and I personally feel the responsibility that in these turbulent times we will form the EU’s foreign affairs,” stated Lipavský.

The task for the Czech Presidency will be to lead Europe through the current complicated times triggered by Russian aggression against Ukraine, inflation, and the pandemic’s aftermath. Support for territorial integrity, post-war reconstruction, and aid for Ukraine will be essential priorities for the Czech Presidency external relations, seen in examples such as Ukrainian refugee housing, organizing a conference on reconstruction, or securing sufficient support for Ukrainian EU candidacy.  

The Czech Presidency will further focus on energy and the economy. The goal of the Presidency will be to gradually end energy dependence on Russia and secure alternative energy providers. We can do this through completing new free trade deals or through investment into energy infrastructure in foreign resources, fulfilling the European incentive “Global Gateway”.

“Besides energy, we want to focus on newer industries, namely green diplomacy. Climate protection is a common Western matter today, and Europe cannot ignore it in future planning,” said the head of Czech diplomacy. 

The Kremlin’s actions have shown that we must increase defense spending and cooperation among the EU and NATO and other foreign partners in fields like cybersecurity and hybrid threats. 

Last but not least, the Presidency will focus on supporting civil society, democracy, independent media, and strengthening the international sanctions regime.

“Czech foreign policy under my leadership will follow the legacy of Václav Havel. Therefore Czechia will emphasize human rights in international policy during its Presidency,” added Minister Lipavský. He also emphasized democratic institutions, civil society, and free media, including independent Russian and Belorussian media. 

Within European foreign affairs, Czechia will through its Presidency assert political unity against Russia, revision of theEastern neighborhood policy, and promote EU expansion into the Western Balkans, Ukraine, Moldova, and Georgia. 

The Indo-Pacific and Sahel regions are no less important in supporting regional stability, development and technological cooperation, and mutual political dialogue. A key priority will be deepening of the transatlantic partnership and EU-US cooperation in the areas of security, economy, and support of democracy worldwide.