Ukraine Won't Sign Association Agreement, EU Confirms
Ukraine will not be signing an Association Agreement with the European Union, confirmed EU special envoy Aleksander Kwasniewski.
"Our mission is over," said Kwasniewski, adding that no Association Agreement will be signed at the upcoming meeting in Vilnius next week.
Earlier Thursday, Ukraine's government announced it adopted a decision to stop the country's preparation for signing an Association Agreement with the European Union.
The decision whether to continue work for the Association Agreement was highly anticipated, as Ukraine had to decide between forging closer ties with the EU and joining the Belarus-Kazakhstan-Russia customs union.
The EU Association Agreement could have been signed before the end of November.
According to a statement published at the website of the Ukrainian goverment, the decision to halt the process has been taken "in the interest of Ukraine's national security."
"The decision has been taken in order to study and develop in more detail the complex of measures that Ukraine must fulfil in order to restore lost volumes of productions and the direction of trade and economic relations with the Russian Federation and the other member states of the Commonwealth of Independent States," says the statement.
Ukraine has also proposed the creation of a trilateral EU-Russia-Ukraine commission to better discuss mutual relations of interest to the three parties.
At the same time, Ukrainian PM Mykola Azarov has issued a statement saying he hopes that within 2014 his country will be able "to remove all barriers to trade with CIS countries."
Azarov has stressed that Ukraine's 2014 rotational presidency of CIS will give the country a good opportunity to realize this plan.
He also described the recent CIS summit in St. Petersburg as "exceptionally productive."
Germany's Foreign Affairs Minister Guido Westerwelle has reacted, saying the move is within Ukraine's power for sovereign decision.
Westerwelle stated that the EU hopes that Ukraine will chose a development consistent with European values, and that the door for further cooperation with the EU remains open.
At the same time, EU Enlargement Commissioner Stefan Fule announced that he is cancelling his upcoming visit to Ukraine.
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The European Union has actually done nothing to convince Ukrainian leaders that association with the EU would actually solve its economic crisis, Polish MEP Pawel Zalewski stated earlier this week.
As compared to hundreds of billions of euros channeled into Greek, Spanish and Portuguese economies, he said, one billion offered to Ukraine was inadequate and "ridiculous."
"It's a ridiculous amount compared to the resources allocated to rescue Southern Europe from bankruptcy," Zalewski said as cited by PR Newswire.
In the meantime Russia has the “means and willingness” to offer Ukraine what the EU lacks, which is money, Eric Kraus, Managing Director of Anyatta Capital told RT, adding that Ukraine is a “vital part” of the European Russian speaking space.
“The European Union offers a lot of words,” Kraus said, implying that nothing tangible would have come out of the deal. “What they don’t offer is what Ukraine needs – and that’s money.”
“Ukraine is not vital to the EU,” Kraus explained. “It is a part of a geopolitical chess game and they’d like to take that piece. They are not going to spend a lot of money for it. They can’t, they’ve got Portugal, they’ve got Greece. Pretty soon they’ve got France.”
The financial analyst also explained the economic problems that Ukraine is facing.
“The problem is that Ukraine is in dire economic strains. Ukraine is 2-6 months from default. They cannot raise money in markets. They are running a deficit. They are having a lot of trouble keeping the currency stable.”
Ukraine took the right decision. There is no point whatsoever to marry with the western degenerates. The EU so far has proven its ineffectiveness and pointless existence. We are not partners and can not be partners with them. Ultimately, their goal has never been a real partnership, but rather giving instructions and obeying their ridiculous rules, norms and so. EU is the prostitute of America in Europe, the dirty hand of Uncle Sam through its puppet state - Britain.