Friday, September 20, 2013

Ukraine Makes Significant Progress In Meeting EU Criteria - Lithuanian Ambassador

KIEV, Ukraine -- The Lithuanian Ambassador to Ukraine Petras Vaitiekūnas is convinced that the EU-Ukraine Association Agreement (AA) will be signed at the Eastern Partnership Summit in November.

Ambassador Petras Vaitiekūnas

He based his opinion on the current progress of Ukraine in the area of European integration including the unanimous approval of the draft of the Association Agreement between the EU and Ukraine by the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine on September 18.

"Ukraine has made great progress, and every day it is making significant steps to meet the criteria. My personal opinion is that the agreement will be signed in November in Vilnius," stated Lithuanian Ambassador Petras Vaitiekūnas in his interview with Interfax-Ukraine.

In addition, the diplomatic official talked about Lithuania's experience of European integration including lobbying of economic interests, intellectual property, as well as issues of cooperation in the humanitarian and cultural areas.

Believing it would be useful for Ukraine he offered to continue sharing Lithuania's Eurointegration experience.

"Ukraine has made great progress on integration and there are a few steps left for Ukraine to make," said Ambassador Vaitiekūnas on September 16 during a press conference, as reported by Ukrainian News.

He welcomed the Ukrainian government and the opposition uniting their efforts on the issues of European integration and reminded that the decision to sign the agreement would be made by each Member State separately, which is where Ukraine, in his opinion, should intensify its lobbying efforts.

Having no doubts that the EU-Ukraine AA will be signed in November, Ambassador Vaitiekunas stressed, however, that the laws required to sign it should be informative and qualitative.

Notably, just on September 5, 2013, the Ukrainian parliament adopted several new laws providing for the Eastern European country to come closer to meeting the requirements, which were set by the Council of the EU in December 2012, and are necessary for signing the AA.

The three key areas in which the EU expected "determined action and tangible progress" on Ukraine's part included fair elections, reforms implementation and elimination of selective justice.

Suffice it to say on August 30, 2013, President of Ukraine Viktor Yanukovych reconfirmed that Ukraine would fulfill the necessary conditions for signing the Association Agreement with the EU.

Source: Herald Online

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