Kyiv, 22 March 2014 – Government Commissioner for European Integration believes that the association agreement is a sort of a recognition, support and manifestation of trust in the current Government.
Among the positive aspects of the agreement signed yesterday, Mr. Pyatnyskyi pointed out one particular sign that had passed unnoticed: in a couple of weeks, the EU will begin to unilaterally apply certain preferences for the Ukrainian goods which will remain effective until November 1 2014. “Even before the Vilnius Summit we had talked about some asymmetry and suggested that the European counterpart should apply some of the provisions on a unilateral basis (provisions of article 29 “Import Duties” and article 31 “Export Duties). Back then, it didn’t happen, and now they were the ones who offered it. It was like extending a hand of friendship. This will enable us to use this time to prepare our business for European conditions, to introduce and launch all internal procedures. Starting on November 1, the agreement will begin to work both ways.”
Mr. Pyatnytskyi refuted the idea that the provisions of the Agreement are impossible to achieve for Ukraine: “If we talk about governmental agencies, they are ready for this. There are a lot of technical issues that govern the work at the European market, this is a sort of a rule book and it takes time to fully implement. Speaking about the part that relates to the European procurement rules, it envisages transparent rules – not selective justice – and specific steps to implement these procedures. Today we are gradually beginning to implement those procedures.” He also believes that special attention should also be paid to seeking new partners and new markets, not necessarily in the EU.
Valeriy Pyatnytskyi noted that he was personally unaware of any statements by EU representatives regarding EU’s readiness to accept Ukraine as a member in the nearest future. “EU accession is a rather complex procedure, it requires the ability to work together and to share common values. What we have signed is a declaration of our readiness to share these values. Some time is required to check whether it really is so. Implementing the right rules is not enough, those rules also need to be complied with. We shouldn’t just declare our intention, we should also prove it with actions.”
Valeriy Pyatnytskyi is a politician and public leader. He is a Government Commissioner for European Integration (since 2011), Head of Ukraine delegation for WTO negotiation (since 2008). Since 2003 he has served in various positions at the Ministry of Economy of Ukraine. From 2005 to 2011 he was the Deputy Minister of Economy of Ukraine.