Azarov describes Ukraine's benefit from free trade in CIS as tremendous

2011-10-25 11:17:24

Ukrainian Prime Minister Mykola Azarov, at a meeting of the economic press club on Monday, described as tremendous Ukraine's benefit from signing an agreement on a free trade area within the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS), according to the media liaisons office of the secretariat of the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine.

Azarov noted that the CIS market was very promising for the sale of domestic products. "Ukraine's benefit is tremendous. It's a real opportunity for us to improve our trade balance," he said.

The prime minister said that the signing of the FTA agreement within the CIS was treated improperly: "They say that if you signed this agreement, then you are moving towards Asia. But nothing of this kind: we have been and will remain at the center of Europe, but our products will move freely."

At the same time, the prime minister noted that in any case it was impossible to oppose the free trade area with the CIS and the European Union. He added that a respective agreement with the EU had yet to be signed: "I can say only that negotiations are at a final stage, almost all of the controversial issues have been resolved, and there remain certain moments that I think will be adjusted, but the agreement is ready for signing." According to Azarov, now it is the EU's turn to express its position. Ukraine's position, he said, remains unchanged: "We believe that the agreement is mutually beneficial, no concessions are being made to Ukraine, and there's a mutually beneficial access to the markets of our countries."