On the referendum on EU Association-Ukraine in the Netherlands about 61% of voters rejected the agreement, but the turnout was very low — 32%, reminiscent of The Financial Times
in an editorial article. According to the newspaper, the democratic legitimacy of the results is not as great as the 2005 referendum on the European constitutional Treaty, when the turnout was 63%.
And yet, this referendum will have consequences. Movement of eurosceptics crave to the advantage of the doubt in the level of democracy and accountability in the EU. «We should expect further attempts to put the political establishment of Europe in an uncomfortable position and weaken the EU,» the publication predicts.
«Meanwhile the Pro-EU Ukrainians accept the results of the Dutch referendum as a slap in the face,» says the newspaper.
European right-wing populist movements depict the results of the referendum as a popular uprising against the EU and its further expansion in Eastern Europe. «It’s a lie, because Ukraine is not a candidate member of the EU. The Dutch government should have been more clearly to explain it to voters during the campaign,» writes the FT.
«European governments rightly want to help Ukraine, by expanding trade and encouraging Kiev to transition to the EU standards in public procurement law and corporate law. If the results of the referendum in the Netherlands will force the EU to abandon those elements of the Association Agreement, would undermine the reputation of the EU as a reliable partner. Will be the loudest to applaud the Russian President Putin. Hostility to the EU common position of Putin and the leader of Ukip Nigel Faraj, «writes the newspaper, advising the British voters to take this into account.
The terms of the Agreement with Ukraine concerning trade, temporarily entered into force on 1 January, and their action cannot be suspended without the unanimous approval of all EU members. «Even if the Dutch government decides not to ratify the Agreement, EU efforts to establish closer ties with Kiev can and should continue,» the paper concludes.
Financial Times. Dutch disadvantage for Europe and Ukraine (editorial) 08.04.2016