Eastern Partnership Civil Society Forum

EU Observer conveys on how EU rebukes Russia on Ukraine’s trade

In the August issue of EU observer Andrew Rettman in his article EU rebukes Russia on Ukraine trade talks about the recent comments of the European Commission on Russian attempt to intimidate Ukraine on trade.

John Clancy, European Commission spokesmen, said in a statement on Tuesday (20 August) that: "Any economic threat from Russia directed against Ukraine and linked with a possible signature of the association agreement with the EU is unacceptable."

Citing Russia's commitments as a member of the World Trade Organisation, he added it is "essential that the talks with the EU on a free trade area will not interfere with Ukrainian plans to develop constructive relations with the Customs Union and the Eurasian economic area [two Russian-led trade blocs]."

According to Mr. Rettman, the developments come three months before Ukraine hopes to sign a political association and free trade pact with the EU.

Tension in Ukrainian political circles increased last week due to a publication, by Ukrainian website Dzerkalo Tyzhnia, of a 10-page document siting a Russian strategy paper on how to sabotage Ukraine's EU aspirations.

Its authenticity was lent weight by Volodymyr Ohryzko, a former Ukrainian foreign minister, who told the RFE/RFL news agency the paper proves "there is a systematic ideological, political, economic, and information war being waged against Ukraine."

The paper calls for Russian puppet organisations in Ukraine to counter pro-EU moves with a view to Kiev signing up to Russia's Customs Union by 2015.

Full article can be found here

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