Ukraine To Withdraw From Economic Pact With 3 Ex-Soviet States

KIEV, Ukraine -- Ukrainian Economy Minister Serhiy Teriokhin said Friday that his country will withdraw from an four-party economic pact with Russia, Kazakhstan and Belarus, the Interfax news agency reported.

However, Ukraine will continue to promote bilateral economic relations with the three countries, said Teriokhin after talks with his Russian counterpart German Gref, adding a special committee will be established to discuss bilateral ties with Russia.

After the committee is established, Ukraine will withdraw from the Common Economic Space (CEP), Teriokhin was quoted by the Interfax.

The Ukrainian minister stressed his country's aim was to develop well-balanced further relations with all nations.

Ukraine, together with the three other ex-Soviet republics, agreed to establish the CEP bloc in Sept. 2003 to boost economic development and improve people's living standards.

The Ukrainian pro-western authorities who came to power after mass opposition protests last year have set the goal of joining the European Union. They are concerned close economic relations with Russia might hurt their aspirations.

Source: Xinhua