European Commission Reports Progress In Free Trade Talks With Ukraine

The European Commission points to a significant progress in negotiations with Ukraine on the introduction of a comprehensive free trade area, European Commissioner for Trade Karel De Gucht said at a meeting with Ukrainian Prime Minister Mykola Azarov on Thursday. Before signing the agreement on a free trade zone between Ukraine and the EU it is necessary to hold another 3-4 rounds of talks. In his words, it does not mean that negotiations will be very long. “We have already accelerated them, and I think that at the summit on November 22 they will get a new impetus,” he underlined.

In turn, the Ukrainian prime minister said that talks on a free trade zone with the EU are moving rapidly. Nevertheless, he added, Ukraine has a number of observations regarding the position of the European Union on this issue. “I would like to draw your attention to a number of issues requiring debates. These questions are fundamental for us, and they must be solved,” Azarov stressed. According to him, first of all it is the refusal from export subsidies in bilateral trade and the mechanism for setting the input prices for agricultural products. “The establishment of such prices immediately makes our products uncompetitive,” the head of government underscored. Moreover, in his opinion, it is necessary to consider the dynamics of tariff quotas and duties in the context of a gradual extension of quotas and reduction of the amount of fee.
Source: UKRINFORM (28.10.2010)