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No Customs-Union for Ukraine if joins EU Association

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Posted 24 October 2013 - 08:43 PM

No Customs Union for Ukraine in Case of EU Deal – Putin

MINSK, October 24 (RIA Novosti) – Russian President Vladimir Putin said Thursday that it would be impossible for Ukraine to join a Moscow-led Customs Union if the country signs an association agreement with the European Union.


“It will be impossible since such association stipulates the creation of a free-trade zone between the European Union and Ukraine,” Putin said at a session of the Supreme Eurasian Economic Council in Minsk.


However, he noted that Russia is neither for nor against Ukraine’s drive to join the European Union.

“This is not our [Russia’s] business, and this is a sovereign right of the Ukrainian people and authorities on behalf of the president, parliament and the government,” Putin said.


Speaking further about accession to the Customs Union of Russia, Belarus and Kazakhstan, Putin said the member states supported Armenia’s and Kyrgyzstan’s bids to join the bloc. He added that a special working group had been formed to work out a road map for their integration.


Ukraine’s government on September 18 approved a draft European Union association agreement, moving the country one step closer to the final signing of such an agreement, slated for November.


Moscow has been increasingly pressuring Kiev to join the Moscow-led Customs Union, which would keep Ukraine under Russia’s sphere of influence. Although Ukraine has observer status in this bloc, it has clearly indicated that it will not seek full membership.

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Posted 24 October 2013 - 08:58 PM

Armenia’s membership in Customs Union to reduce turnover with EU: German ambassador

>>>>Of six Eastern partnership countries only Moldova, Ukraine and Georgia will sing the agreement, not Armenia<<<<<

YEREVAN, October 24. 2013/ARKA.am/. Armenia’s membership in the Customs Union will lead to reduction in turnover with the EU countries, Germany’s ambassador to Armenia Reiner Morell said Thursday at a conference on responsible finance in Armenia.

He said the EU-member countries will accept Armenia’s decision as a sovereign one, not clarifying though what consequences it may have.

“We regret Armenia is moving towards membership in the customs union not for increasing trade volumes. Apart from that, the country will have no opportunity to take the advantage of tariffs and preferences that the EU can provide”, the ambassador said.

Morel stressed the importance of carrying through the cooperation planned, despite the fact many provisions will have to be revised. At the same time, according to the ambassador, the document will not be materialized at the Eastern Partnership summit in Vilnius.

According to Morel, of six Eastern partnership countries only Moldova, Ukraine and Georgia will sing the agreement.

Armenia said it intends to cooperate with the Customs Union and, at the same time, keep its contacts with other partners, and the EU will continue the cooperation if potential fields are pointed to, Morel said.

The diplomat also stressed the need for reviewing compatibility of interests and understanding the legal basis of relations.

The EU is willing to continue cooperation with Armenia, especially when Armenia have already started implementing reforms, Morel said.

According to ArmStat, Armenia’s foreign trade turnover with the EU countries amounted to a total of $1,059.18 million in January-August 2013, an increase of 1.6% compared to the same period of the year before.

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