Ukraine Ready to Compromise on the Free Trade Zone With the EU

By Worldwide News Ukraine, PRNE
Tuesday, April 19, 2011

KYIV, Ukraine, April 20, 2011 - Ukraine has expressed its readiness to compromise with the
European Union on the free trade zone - the core issue of the ongoing
Association talks, according to the Ukrainian Prime Minister Mykola Azarov as
a result of his meeting with the President of the European Commission Jose
Manuel Barroso

The progress in the Association talks in the recent months has been
already noted. According to the Ukrainian Prime Minister, 90% of the
positions in the free trade agreement have already been agreed upon. The key
priority issues for Ukraine in the free trade zone are the agricultural
production and automotive transportation.

As both parties concluded, the finalization of the Association agreement
remains realistic to be completed by the end of 2011.

"We are close to complete the Association talks. I believe, that the
signing of the Association Agreement, which includes the free trade zone,
will be mutually beneficial and a huge step forward for Ukraine. This will
embrace free access to the market of 500 million people, which will open a
lot of opportunities to Ukraine. On top of that the European Integration of
the country will contribute to its modernization. It will also raise the
country's attractiveness for foreign investments", Jose Manuel Barroso said.

Also, Ukraine may require a transition period and compensation mechanisms
for the local producers in the priority sectors. Such provisions have already
been embodied by the EU in the existing Euro-Mediterranean Partnership, which
comprises Association Agreements between the European Union and nine
countries across the Mediterranean Sea (Syria, Tunisia, Israel, Morocco,
Jordan, Egypt, Algeria, Lebanon,and the Palestinian Authority). The
provisions of these Agreements include the WTO-compatible transition period
of up to 12 years, varying between countries and sectors.

The latest round of the Ukraine-EU talks on the Association Agreement
took place on April 4-8, 2011. Overall, Ukraine and the EU have held 18
rounds of talks starting March 5, 2007. The core of the Agreement is an
introduction of a free-trade zone between Ukraine and the EU. The Agreement
will stipulatedifferent aspects of economic and scientific cooperation
between the EU and Ukraine as well as promote and enhance their political
collaboration in the future.

For more information, contact Maryna Khorunzha +380443324784
news at, Project Manager at Worldwide News Ukraine

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