The real decision-making timetable is different. Relations have been off track ever since ex-Prime
Minister Yulia Tymoshenko was sent to prison in 2011 on an abuse-of-office
conviction.The EU Foreign Affairs Council made some progress
towards better defining its conditionality towards Ukraine last December, when
it listed three key areas:
“progress in addressing the issue of
elections; and“implementation of reforms defined in
the jointly agreed association agenda.”
Neighbourhood Commissioner Stefan Fuele and others have recently tried to firm
up the idea of an ultimate deadline this coming November – either Ukraine
finally gets the Association Agreement at the Eastern Partnership summit in
Vilnius, Lithuania, or it will be kicked into the long grass for several years.
Opinions may already begin to harden when the European Commission publishes its
annual report on integration progress in May. So any rabbits pulled out of the
hat before or during next week’s summit seem likely to be pretty small.