Ukraine, EU to start updating association agreement to revise list, volumes of Ukrainian exports

KYIV. Nov 3 (Interfax-Ukraine) – Ukraine and the European Union in 2021 will start negotiations on updating the Association Agreement in order to revise the list of goods and services, as well as their volumes supplied to the European market, Deputy Prime Minister for European and Euro-Atlantic Integration Olha Stefanishyna has said.

"From January next year, as planned, we will be able to start the negotiations on the parameters of trade with the EU, while conducting a political assessment of the implementation of the Association Agreement with the EU," she said during an online interview "Trade Wars: the Art of Defense" on Tuesday.

According to her, Ukraine has initiated the process of renewing the agreement, since such an opportunity has been legally opened, and it is also necessary to revise the parameters of trade.

"On the other hand, we have already outgrown the volumes of trade and access to the EU markets, which were laid down in this document. Our position was reinforced by the position of the business with which we are constantly in dialogue," the deputy prime minister said, adding: "Our ambitions include the possibility of revising the agreement on all types of goods and services, as well as expanding their list and including new items that have not been previously negotiated."

According to Stefanishyna, there is a set of issues related to increasing or abolishing quotas, as well as establishing a zero customs rate, which are to be discussed at the negotiations.

According to her, first of all, this is about food products, "to trade leaders who have positively proved themselves since the moment of the agreement."

"We do not expect difficult negotiations here," the deputy prime minister said.

She also said the presence of a complex set of issues regarding trade in the products of the metallurgical complex, which goes beyond the regulation of the Ukraine-EU Association Agreement.

"This is a complex issue. The European market is interested in maximizing its protection, but there will be negotiations," Stefanishyna said.

According to her, it is planned, in particular, to consider the issue of creating incentives for small and medium-sized businesses to enter European markets, on which there has not yet been an agreement.

She said that Ukraine, along with the European Commission, is now developing modalities for the upcoming negotiations on a general review of the agreement, as well as which association agencies and which parameters will be revised.

As for the assessment of the implementation of the Association Agreement, then, according to the deputy prime minister, it is necessary to understand what works and what requires additional agreements or legal initiatives.