Ukraine's foreign policy today needs four things: speed, creativity, ambition and efficiency – Zelenskyy
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy stressed the need to change the style and philosophy of Ukraine's foreign policy – it must be fast, creative, ambitious and effective. This was stated by the Head of State, speaking at the conference of ambassadors of Ukraine "Diplomacy 30. Strategy of Strong State," which is taking place in Huta, Ivano-Frankivsk region.
The President said that the current conference is an important element of the new format of Ukrainian diplomacy, within which such meetings will be held annually.
"In these circumstances, we must change the style and philosophy of our foreign policy. Today, it needs many things. I would like to dwell on four main, in my opinion, priorities," the Head of State said.
"The first is speed. From too conservative, and therefore very slow, our diplomacy must become lively and dynamic, that is, fast. Currently, Ukraine is forced to catch up in many processes. And this is wrong," the President said.
According to Zelenskyy, Ukraine must move fast, and therefore should not waste time on minor things.
"We want to unblock the Donbas peace process as soon as possible, return Crimea, achieve EU membership in the coming years and get a very clear term perspective from NATO, very concrete term. And we want to get it in 2022," the President of Ukraine said.
To achieve all these goals, according to the Head of State, we need the second thing – creativity. After all, the desire for a quick result forces Ukraine to look for all possible ways to achieve it.
"We should not wait for someone to solve our problems instead of us, but look for and offer new mechanisms and new formats every day. Each of you must go beyond the conventional politics. Think about how else we can help our country, Ukraine, other than the usual daily calls to keep sanctions or join NATO. I am very much looking forward to such formats, I am very much looking forward to your new ideas," Zelenskyy said.
In order for these ideas to be interesting and have the support of Ukraine's international partners, we need a third thing – ambition, the President said.
According to the President, a change in Ukraine's own perception will change the perception of our country around the world. According to him, Ukraine should declare itself as a strong strategic partner and a source of opportunities, not problems and threats. It is necessary to continue the formation of Ukraine as a regional leader, through small alliances and initiatives it is necessary to build a new reality, where Ukraine is a driver and leader of processes.
"Not a poor relative who always asks someone for something, but a strong, self-sufficient country that relies primarily on itself. And it is great if other countries rely on Ukraine. This is ambitious," Zelenskyy said.
All these factors, according to the President, will provide the fourth, most important element – the result, which is measured not by the number of applications, but by specific amounts of support, projects, and investments.
"Specificity. Less politics, more economy. After all, it is the economy and the common economic interest of certain states that strengthen the political partnership between countries. There should be more and more Ukrainian products abroad every day. We need to expand free trade area agreements with the EU, Canada and Israel. I strongly believe that we are finalizing the FTA with Turkey. I would like to do it early next year, when President Erdogan will visit Ukraine. Also we should move towards trade liberalization with the United States, Japan and other promising trading partners. We need to move away from the stereotyped vision, and constantly look for new opportunities and for new markets. It is ambitious, and it is about the result," the President said.
According to him, Ukraine should also make more use of the potential of India, China, Latin America, Africa and the Middle East.
The President said that Ukrainian diplomats should transform their work in the host countries into concrete economic and social achievements, because sometimes economic dividends go hand in hand with the economy.
"I am ready to personally visit key capitals, hold talks with leaders where we open embassies, where there are concrete proposals, where there are certain joint businesses, economic projects for our state. I know that a personal visit is really a requirement of some regions. This is how leaders in other countries used to live. And well, it is good, we are open, we are ready. There are no problems with this," he said, adding that such visits from the point of view of economy and trade are needed first of all.
The head of state called on Ukrainian diplomats to look for specific topics where Ukraine could be interesting for the leaders of other states, and what would be interesting for our country: joint initiatives and agreements.
"In short, the result with which my delegation and I should return to Ukraine from each foreign visit measures your effectiveness as ambassador," Zelenskyy said.
Under the new system, exporters will be able to create a request for specific support in entering a foreign market and monitor the status of its implementation. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and diplomats will receive this application and will be actively involved immediately after its verification according to certain criteria.
"Now it is the main tool for promoting Ukrainian exports abroad through Ukrainian embassies," Kuleba said.