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BRUSSELS, November 21, 23:54 /ITAR-TASS/. The association agreement between Ukraine and the European Union could have “given momentum” to negotiations on a new standby arrangement with the International Monetary Fund (IMF).
In a statement on Thursday, November 21, Ashton said the Ukrainian government’s decision to suspend the process of preparation for signature of the Association Agreement and Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Area between the EU and Ukraine was “a disappointment not just for the EU but, we believe, for the people of Ukraine.”
“The signing of the most ambitious agreement the EU has ever offered to a partner country would have further enhanced the reform course of Ukraine and sent a clear signal to investors worldwide as well as to international financial institutions that Ukraine is serious about its modernisation pledge and becoming a predictable and reliable interlocutor for international markets. It would have provided a unique opportunity to reverse the recent discouraging trend of decreasing foreign direct investment in Ukraine,” she said.
Ashton believes that the future for Ukraine lies in a strong relationship with the EU and reaffirmed Europe’s commitment to the people of Ukraine.
Earlier in the day, the government of Ukraine has made the decision to stop preparations for signing an association agreement with the European Union and to resume active dialogue with Russia and other Customs Union and CIS countries.
An order signed by Ukrainian Prime Minister Nikolai Azarov said the purpose was to “invigorate economic ties in order to jointly preserve and strengthen the economic potential of the state.