EU Hopes For More From Ukraine In February Talks

KIEV, Ukraine -- The European Union (EU) is looking for better results when it meets Ukraine in the next round of negotiations here on Feb. 6 over the eastern European country's bid to join the bloc.

Jose Manuel Pinto Teixeira

Announcing the date for the talks, EU Delegation to Ukraine head Jose Manuel Pinto Teixeira said Friday they would be devoted to concluding an agreement on political association and a free trade zone.

"We hope that this round of talks will be constructive, since the previous round in December in Brussels did not meet our expectations," he said.

Teixeira added the EU hoped to finish the negotiations with Ukraine on the signing of these agreements before the end of this year.

"It is important that these negotiations and the subsequent rounds are successful," the official said.

Teixeira said Ukraine should not forget about developing democracy and freedoms in the country.

Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych said earlier Ukraine and the EU needed continuing high-level political dialogue.

During the EU-Ukraine summit in 2010, the two sides agreed on a visa action plan and signed a protocol to grant Ukraine's access to EU programs.

The Ukrainian president said seeking membership of the EU was the country's priority in foreign policy.

Source: Xinhua