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Commissioner Füle to visit Ukraine on 21 – 23 April

Commission Européenne - IP/10/448   20/04/2010

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IP/10/448

Brussels, 20 April 2010

Commissioner Füle to visit Ukraine on 21 – 23 April

Commissioner for Enlargement and European Neighbourhood Policy Štefan Füle will visit Ukraine on 21 – 23 April. The major focus of his visit will be on further enhancement of bilateral relations between the EU and Ukraine.

Ukraine faces many political and economic challenges" said Štefan Füle prior to the visit. "Decisive action on reform is urgently needed if Ukraine is to achieve the stability and prosperity its citizens hope for. A long-term solution can only be derived from a sound business and investment climate, generating growth, jobs and stable public revenue. This, in turn, requires a stable, democratic political environment. the Commissioner stressed.

During his visit he will meet with President Yanukovych, Prime Minister Azarov, Deputy Prime Minister Tigipko, Foreign Minister Gryshchenko as well as other members of the Government. Meetings will also be held with the Speaker of the Verkhovna Rada, Volodymyr Lytvyn and with heads of various parliamentary committees as well as representatives from opposition parties. In the course of his visit, Commissioner Füle will discuss also with representatives of civil society and business and will address an audience of students and academic staff of the Kyiv Institute of International Relations at the Taras Shevchenko National University.

Background

The current legal basis for EU-Ukraine relations is the Partnership and Co-operation Agreement (PCA) which was signed in 1994 and entered into force in 1998. It covers all traditional areas of co-operation, including political dialogue; trade in goods and services (on a non-preferential basis), business, investment.

Negotiations on a comprehensive, ambitious and innovative Association Agreement between the EU and Ukraine were launched in March 2007. Following agreement that Ukraine would accede to the WTO (accession took place on 16 May 2008), the EU and Ukraine also launched negotiations on a Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Area as a core element of the Association Agreement.

On 23 November 2009, the EU and Ukraine formally adopted an Association Agenda. This document which replaces the EU-Ukraine Action Plan serves as the main reference document for reform, facilitating and preparing for the entry into force of the Association Agreement.


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