26 September, 2013 18:26 ▪
Financial Times: EU steps up attention to Ukraine to get more influence in the East
“The bloc’s goal is to cement closer ties with Ukraine by concluding a political and economic pact, known as an association agreement, at a summit in November that will feature heads of government from a region of Europe where Brussels and Moscow are butting heads,” newspaper urges.
“The EU’s two most senior officials – José Manuel Barroso, the European Commission president, and Herman Van Rompuy, the European Council president – expressed their “determination in moving forward” with the agreement after meeting Ukraine’s president, Viktor Yanukovich, at the UN General Assembly in New York on Tuesday.
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EU member states agreed in a private meeting on Monday to sweeten their offer so that Ukraine could enjoy many of the pact’s benefits, including trade liberalisation, as soon as it is signed,” The Financial Times reports.
“In some aspects, the Russian pressure has helped us,” an EU official in a commentary to the newspaper said.
“In spite of the determination to win over Ukraine, particularly among eastern member states such as Poland and Lithuania that are still wary of Russian domination, others continue to harbour concerns about a formerly communist country with a history of corruption and selective justice,” newspaper reports.
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