The EU-Ukraine Association Agreement (AA), which includes a Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Area (DCFTA), entered fully into force on September 1, after a period of provisional application. The DCFTA provides for the mutual opening of markets for goods and services, although the EU reduces and abolishes duties at a faster rate. Ukraine will gradually adopt EU laws and standards in production and services.
The DCFTA has been provisionally applied since January 2016. According to the EU, trade between the EU and Ukraine increased by around 25 percent in the first four months of 2017 compared to the same period in 2016. The EU is Ukraine’s number one trading partner. In July, the European Parliament agreed to the introduction of additional trade concessions which will top up the quantities of agricultural products Ukraine can export to the EU under the AA/DCFTA without paying customs duties and accelerate the elimination of customs tariffs for several industrial products.
Federica Mogherini, High Representative of the EU for Foreign Affairs, commented: “Today we finally achieve what we have been working on in the last years: a closer association between the European Union and Ukraine. This means closer ties between our citizens, bigger markets and more opportunities for businesses and entrepreneurs, increased sharing of experience, information, and expertise.”
EU Commissioner for European Neighbourhood Policy, Johannes Hahn, added: “The first concrete results of the implementation of the Agreement can already be seen: Ukraine’s exports to the EU have increased and the EU has confirmed its position as Ukraine’s first trading partner.”
Under the broader Association Agreement, Ukraine has committed to structural reforms in the areas of democracy, human rights, the rule of law, good governance, trade, and sustainable development. The Association Agreement was negotiated between 2007 and 2011 and signed in 2014
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