Ukraine Remains On Pro-Europe Course - Foreign Minister

KIEV, Ukraine -- Ukraine's foreign minister said Saturday the country's aim of full membership in the European Union remained unchanged.

Foreign Minister Borys Tarasyuk

"Ukraine's course, which aims at gaining full-fledged membership of the EU, remains unchanged," Borys Tarasyuk said at celebrations to mark Europe Day in Ukraine. "We will make maximum efforts to achieve relevant standards in all spheres."

Tarasyuk said Ukraine was looking to conclude a new agreement with the EU based on integration and association.

He said the establishment of a free trade zone with the EU and Ukraine's accession to the World Trade Organization were the country's main priorities.

"Concluding an agreement on simplifying visa regulations will be an important element of our cooperation with the European Union," he said.

Tarasyuk added that successful implementation of these plans would eventually take Ukraine into the EU.

Europe Day - officially May 9 - marks the symbolic birthday of the EU, as it marks the day in 1950 when French Foreign Minister Robert Schuman made the now-famous "Schuman declaration," seen as the beginning of the creation of the Union.

Ukraine is celebrating the holiday for a fourth time, although it is not an EU member.

Source: RIA Novosti