Expert thinks Yanukovych was Bluffing?

17:46, 01 December 2010
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Director of the European Centre for International Political Economy Fredrik Erixon is convinced that Ukraine will not join a customs union with Russia, Belarus and Kazakhstan.

Such an opinion was shared by him during a telephone quiz organized by the Gorshenin Institute .

According to F.Erixon, Ukraine will not seriously consider a customs union with Russia, Belarus and Kazakhstan anytime soon.

‘There are WTO-technical problems that I think will prevent such action. I am also convinced that Brussels knows that the first priority of Ukraine is to go for deeper trade relations with the EU’, he said.

Also, on the request of the Gorshenin Institute, F.Erixon commented on the resolution on Ukraine adopted by the European Parliament. The expert mentioned that it is balanced and sets out a good case for deeper EU-Ukraine relations. ‘The resolution reaffirms advancements on the Association Agreement and endorses a quick move to conclude the FTA negotiations. It also calls for speeding up negotiations over visas. It is also good for Ukraine that the EU is active on matters concerning flawed electoral laws and practices’, said the expert.

F.Erixon mentioned that the European Parliament is really worried about media freedoms and the overall conditions for political pluralism in Ukraine. ‘There have been too many incidents lately in Ukraine over the status and integrity of political and media pluralism for the European Parliament not to raise the concerns. For the moment the EP has decided to continue endorsing the trade and association agreement track, and generally see such agreement as helpful to the development of political and media freedoms in Ukraine. That can change, however, if conditions continue to deteriorate’, thinks the expert.

As already reported by UNIAN, on the 25 of November, the European Parliament adopted a resolution on Ukraine in which, in particular, it expressed its regret that Ukraine had changed the electoral law a few months before the local elections, expressed its concern as for the attempts of the Government to limit the freedom of media in Ukraine lately and appealed to investigate on the disappearance of journalist Vasyl KLIMENTIEV. The MEPs appealed to the Ukrainian Government to investigate on all the reports of rights and freedoms violations, and on the role of the SBU in the intervention in the democratic process.

The resolution also stresses that Ukraine is a European country that may seek the EU membership.

On the 26th of November, Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych made a statement on the possibility of Ukraine’s joining a customs union with Russia, Belarus and Kazakhstan.

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