Polish President Andrzej Duda said Ukraine has become a participating partner in the Three Seas Initiative – Trimarium – Polish news outlet TVN24 reported on June 20.
The participating partner status is a new type of engagement program for countries that aspire to join the EU, Duda said at the Trimarium summit.
“We have decided to create a special, new type of partnership with the Three Seas Initiative – distinct from the strategic partnership – a participatory partnership,” said Duda.
“This is a new type of partnership that is not only reserved for Ukraine. We gave it to Ukraine today, but we assume that the same kind of partnership can be extended to countries that are located in Central Europe and are not members of the European Union, but aspire to join it.”
Duda added that any EU candidate members, or countries who are working towards the candidacy, can apply for this new type of Trimarium partnership.
Earlier on June 20, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky addressed the summit, urging participating countries to find a partnership format for Ukraine.
“Ukraine should be a part of the Three Seas Initiative,” said Zelensky.
“It’s wrong for our country to remain excluded from the initiative. We have to find a way for us to join (the initiative). One look at the map makes clear that all of our countries could only realize their potential in cooperation with Ukraine.”
Trimarium was established by Poland and Croatia in 2016, to foster economic cooperation between central and eastern European countries along the axis from the Baltic Sea to the Adriatic and Black Seas.
The initiative is comprised of 12 countries: Austria, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Poland, Hungary, Romania, Bulgaria, Latvia, Lithuania, Estonia, Slovenia, and Croatia.