Poland hopes Ukraine, EU will end talks on association agreement by end of 2011

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July 4, 2011, 2:37 p.m. | Ukraine — by Interfax-Ukraine
Poland hopes that during its six-month presidency of the Council of the European Union, Ukraine and the EU will complete their talks on signing an association agreement. "Of course, progress in Ukraine's talks [with the EU] on the association agreement and the creation of a free trade area is very important to us. Warsaw hopes that the negotiation process will be completed during our presidency," Polish Ambassador to Ukraine Henryk Litwin said at a press conference in Kyiv on Monday.

He said that the issue concerned the completion of the negotiation process, since the signing of the agreement has a lot of formal and technical conditions.

Speaking about the priorities of the Polish presidency of the EU, Litwin said that the issue concerned European integration as a source of growth, a secure Europe, and Europe benefiting from openness.

He said that that "European integration as a source of growth" implied the adoption of a new EU budget for 2014-2020, the development of a common market - in particular, the improvement of the environment for small and medium-sized enterprises - and the provision of electronic services.

As for the "secure Europe" priority, Poland is planning to propose to strengthen the external dimension of the EU energy policy, strengthen military and civilian capabilities, strengthen border security, and jointly conduct reform of the EU's agricultural policy in terms of enhancing food safety.

The priority "Europe benefiting from openness," according to Litwin, means that Poland, as part of its EU presidency, will seek to continue the current round of multilateral trade talks under the World Trade Organization, and to make progress in implementing the ideas of expansion - in particular, through signing an agreement on Croatia's accession to the EU. The issue also concerns progress in talks in this field with Turkey and Iceland, and the establishment of new cooperation framework between the EU and Russia.

As for its eastern neighbors, Poland is planning to contribute to strengthening cooperation between the EU and these countries.

"The Polish government hopes that the key political decisions in this regard will be taken at a summit of the Eastern Partnership in Warsaw in September," he said.
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