'On the road to Lugano'
In the months leading up to the ministerial conference, a number of preparatory events will take place in and outside Ukraine under the banner 'On the road to Lugano'. The theme of the conference in Switzerland will underscore that the long-term success of the reforms in Ukraine depends on inclusiveness and shared responsibility among the central, regional and local authorities, the private sector, academia, civil society and the citizens themselves.
On 8 July 2021 in Vilnius, Federal Councillor Ignazio Cassis accepted the presidency of the URC in preparation for the conference in 2022. In the coming year, a series of preparatory events under the banner 'On the road to Lugano' will take place in and outside Ukraine. The aim is to achieve progress that can be presented and discussed at the Lugano conference.
The conference will be preceded by two preparatory processes. One will take place in Ukraine and will allow progress on the reforms to be measured, while the other will take place in the capitals of the Ukraine's principal partner countries. Switzerland will be able to bring added value to the international preparatory process: in its work in Brussels as a bridge builder on Ukrainian issues, in its roles in Washington within the IMF and at the World Bank, and domestically thanks to International Geneva and its financial centre.
In Brussels, Geneva, Washington...and Davos?
The first event officially launching this process could coincide with the meeting between Switzerland's top diplomat and his Ukrainian counterpart Dmytro Kuleba this autumn in Kyiv. Subsequent events should allow Switzerland to demonstrate in concrete terms the added value it brings by mobilising and facilitating the process in Ukraine, Brussels, Geneva and Washington. A side event on the occasion of the World Economic Forum in 2022 might also be prepared.
Priority themes and areas relevant to the discussions have not yet been determined. These will be decided in due course and in tandem with the Ukrainian authorities.