Victor Yushchenko welcomes plans by the government to sign a deal enabling Ukraine to become a full member of the World Trade Organization in the first quarter of 2007 and calls on the cabinet of ministers and parliament to join efforts to achieve this goal, his press secretary, Iryna Vannykova, has told a news conference, according to the President`s press-office.

The President believes our country should “walk this path” without artificial obstacles and conflicts. He also hopes Ukraine’s growing transit capabilities will help reinforce its energy security and make its relations with the EU, Russia and Caspian countries more dynamic.

“The President supports initiatives aimed at boosting Ukraine’s economy and international reputation. Thus he expresses solidarity with the government, which wants to develop Ukraine’s economy by becoming a WTO member and improving its transit capabilities,” she said.

Mr. Yushchenko also appreciates plans by the government to modernize oil and gas pipelines and transport oil via the Odesa – Brody pipeline in a European direction but insists that the cabinet must implement these plans lawfully and transparently.