Dialogue Between EU And Ukraine Should Envision Future Membership - British MP

BRUSSELS, Belgium -- The head of the British delegation to the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe Robert Walter believes that dialogue with Ukraine needs to be conducted keeping in mind the country's future membership in the European Union.

British MP Robert Walter.

"The need for deepening and developing the relationship with Ukraine is natural and needs to be conducted in line with future EU membership of the country," said Walter, commenting on the Ukrainian President's speech at PACE.

The president's speech highlighted the matters of Ukrainian Chairmanship of the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe.

The main focus of the address was the European security and human rights protection in Europe as well as the ongoing reforms in Ukraine in the areas of constitutional law, parliamentary election procedures and corruption prevention.

Robert Walter believes Viktor Yanukovych sounded convincing while talking about domestic reforms.

According to the British politician, Ukrainian president made it clear that Ukraine is taking its commitments to adjust legislation in the way that will allow establishment and development of the democratic institutions seriously.

"I cannot speak on behalf of the EU but as a representative of the EU member I would like to underline the importance of development of relations with Ukraine in this direction [European integration - ed.]," said Walter. "Ukraine is an important Black Sea country for Europe," he continued.

Presently, European integration is one of the foreign policy priorities for Ukraine.

Signing the Free Trade Agreement is the main short-term goal of the Ukrainian integration process.

The 17th round of negotiations with the EU on the Free Trade Agreement is ended on June 24 with Ukrainian officials hoping to sign the Free Trade Agreement by October 2011 and agree upon the Association Agreement provisions in December.

According to the European Parliament Policy Department administrator Inna Kirsch, the Association Agreement is planned to be signed by summer 2012 while all the provisions of the document are to be settled at the Ukraine-EU summit in December this year.

Before signing the Agreement Ukraine is required to implement reforms to arrange for security and freedom as well as bring Ukrainian legislation in compliance with European standards.

Source: Worldwide News Ukraine