The European Union and Ukraine share an objective which transcends bilateral cooperation: gradual progress towards political association and economic integration.
Ukraine is a key partner in the Eastern Partnership, a facet of European Neighbourhood Policy. Since 1998 the Partnership and Cooperation Agreement has enabled the EU and Ukraine to cooperate with one another on all major aspects of reform.
It is to be replaced by the Association Agreement, including a Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Area, the political section of which was signed on 21 March 2014. The remaining sections – notably the Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Area - are expected to be signed after Ukraine's presidential elections.
In mid-2013 the EU-Ukraine Council endorsed an updated EU-Ukraine Association Agenda , designed to pave the way for the Association Agreement and the Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Area.
On 5 March 2014 the European Commission agreed on a financial assistance package of at least EUR 11 bn in loans and grants from the EU budget and EU-based international financial institutions, to: