The EU is seeking an increasingly close relationship with Ukraine, going beyond mere bilateral co-operation, to gradual economic integration and a deepening of political co-operation.
Ukraine is a priority partner country within the European Neighbourhood Policy (ENP) and the Eastern Partneship (EaP). The Partnership and Co-operation Agreement (PCA) which entered into force in 1998 and provides a comprehensive and ambitious framework for cooperation between the EU and Ukraine, in all key areas of reform.
At the Paris Summit in September 2008 an agreement was reached to start negotiations on an EU-Ukraine Association Agreement, which is to be the successor agreement to the PCA. Several negotiating Rounds have since been organised, alternately in Brussels and Kiev (see: 4th Joint Progress Report on Negotiations on the Association Agreement [23 KB] ). In November 2009, the Cooperation Council adopted the EU-Ukraine Association Agenda [112 KB] . This Agenda replaces the former Action Plan , and will prepare for and facilitate the entry into force of the new Agreement. In May 2011, the updated EU-Ukraine Association Agenda [94 KB] was jointly agreed by Ukraine and the EU.
At the 15th Ukraine-EU Summit of 19 December 2011, the EU leaders and President Yanukovych noted that a common understanding on the text of the Association Agreement was reached. On 10 December 2012, the EU Foreign Affairs Council adopted Council conclusions on Ukraine which affirmed the EU’s commitment to signing the Agreement (inc. DCFTA) as soon as there is determined action and tangible progress by Ukraine on the benchmarks contained in the Conclusions, possibly by the time of the Eastern Partnership Summit in Vilnius in November 2013.
The Association Agreement will significantly deepen Ukraine’s political association and economic integration with the EU. As Ukraine became a member of the World Trade Organisation (WTO) in May 2008, negotiations on the establishment of a Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Area (DCFTA) could be launched, as an integral part of the Association Agreement.