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Poland takes over presidency14th of September 2011
Poland has assumed the rotating presidency of the EU for the first time since it became a member in 2004. Its priorities for the six-month term include building relations with the EU's eastern and southern neighbours, and encouraging economic growth. It also says it wants to promote further EU enlargement.
There is an Eastern Partnership summit this month, gathering leaders from the EU and six former Soviet nations. Poland wants to conclude negotiations on a free trade agreement with Ukraine.
The rotating presidency is less powerful than in the past, now that the EU has a full-time president of the European Council - Herman Van Rompuy - and a foreign policy chief, Baroness Ashton.