European Union External Action

EU-Ukraine Association Agreement enters fully into force

01/09/2017 - 18:19

On 1 September 2017, the EU-Ukraine Association Agreement comes into full force. The Association Agreement, including its Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Area (DCFTA), is the main tool for bringing Ukraine and the EU closer together: it promotes deeper political ties and stronger economic links, as well as respect for common European values.

EU High Representative Federica Mogherini, said: "Today we finally achieve what we have been working on in the last years: a closer association between the European Union and Ukraine. This means closer ties between our citizens, bigger markets and more opportunities for businesses and entrepreneurs, increased sharing of experience, information and expertise. It shows that we share the same objectives and that the Ukrainian people can count on the European Union's support and cooperation for the years to come."

Parts of the Association Agreement have been provisionally applied since 1 November 2014.  This has enhanced EU-Ukraine cooperation on human rights, fundamental freedoms and the rule of law. The Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Area has been provisionally applied since 1 January 2016, constituting a major milestone in bilateral trade relations and offering new economic opportunities to both the EU and Ukraine. Ukrainian businesses receive stable and predictable preferential access to the largest market in the world, with over 500 million consumers. EU businesses are able to benefit from easier access to the Ukrainian market and build new relationships with Ukrainian suppliers and partners. The first concrete results of implementation of the Agreement can already be seen: Ukraine's exports to the EU have increased and the EU has confirmed its position as Ukraine's prime trading partner.

The Association Agreement covers most of the reforms undertaken by Ukraine since 2014 and provides the roadmap for Ukraine's reform process. The Agreement is very ambitious with Ukraine working towards approximating standards and laws in 27 areas of the EU acquis. The benefits in terms of stability, security and prosperity of the AA/DCFTA are reciprocal. For example, security of EU member states is enhanced with a stable and secure neighbourhood, business opportunities for EU economic operators are expanded with the implementation of reforms in partner countries bringing predictability to investments and trade exchanges. 

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