In late June, Ukraine, Moldova and Georgia signed a number of agreements with the European Union aimed at increasing cooperation with these countries’ Western neighbors. Moldova and Georgia each signed a far-reaching political Association Agreement with the EU, including a Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Area, or DCFTA. Ukraine, which had signed the political portions of the Association Agreement in March, also formalized its partnership by signing the economic portions.
The agreements, five years in the making, will lower trade barriers and promote democratic reform. “For the European Union,” said European Commission President José Barroso, “it is a solemn commitment to support Georgia, the Republic of Moldova and Ukraine, each step of the way, along the road of transforming their countries into stable, prosperous democracies.”
The European Union will lower import tariffs for the three countries and open to them the European Union market with its 500 million customers. It will also work with Ukraine, Georgia and Moldova to bring their products up to EU quality standards.
Meanwhile, the three new associate countries will also gradually open their own markets to EU goods and reduce their own tariffs, as they adjust and align their economies with the European Union.
The United States congratulates Georgia, Moldova, and Ukraine on the signing of the Agreements and establishing Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Areas with the European Union.
“It is not just that these agreements link the EU’s eastern neighbors into its single market and unlock new opportunities for trade and assistance. Today, Moldova, Georgia and Ukraine have signaled their readiness to undertake important economic and legal reforms that will make them stronger, more vibrant democracies,” said Secretary of State John Kerry.
“We continue to support the territorial integrity of Georgia, Moldova and Ukraine. The decision on the best path to security, prosperity, and a better future for their citizens is one that can and should be made by these sovereign nations, and by them alone. We applaud the hard work and determination that has brought them to this point, and we will continue to stand with them as they work to implement key reforms and build more prosperous, stable, and democratic societies.”