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José Manuel Durão Barroso

President of the European Commission

Remarks by President Barroso at the press point after the Chernobyl Pledging Conference

Press Point

Kiev, 19 April 2011

Ladies and Gentlemen,

Let me first thank our Ukrainian hosts, especially President Yanukovich and France as the G8 chair. Today's conference is a success. But a lot remains to be done to reach our ambitious goal and transform Chernobyl into a secure and environmentally safe site.

The European Commission remains totally committed to that goal. We already contributed a quarter of the funds for Chernobyl and a total of 470 million Euros for safety- and social projects. This makes us the biggest donor.

Today, I am honoured to announce an additional pledge by the Commission of around 110 million Euros.

Together with the generous contributions of EU Member States made today, the European Union stands for more than half of the shelter and safety funds and we are proud of that. This is a concrete sign of our solidarity with our Ukrainian friends.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

We cannot go back in time and make undone what happened. We cannot eliminate the suffering of the past. But we can show responsibility for the future.

I believe that today the international community has risen to this challenge.

This afternoon, we will also draw further lessons in the Nuclear Safety Summit. It is clear that we need to look into the global safety standards for nuclear plants.

That is why the EU invites its neighbours and international partners to undertake safety assessments and work for more stringent global rules in the framework of the International Atomic Energy Agency.

Because Chernobyl is a stark reminder that nuclear risks do not stop at our borders. Our responsibility and solidarity should not stop at our borders either.

Thank you.

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