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You're reading: Foreign Policy Journal: Ukraine’s historic moment – and how it may be lost

After five years of intense negotiations, Ukraine and the European Union initialed, in 2012, the text of an elaborate Association Agreement providing for both close political cooperation as well as a Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Area. Today, Kyiv is merely a small step away from the treaty’s signing scheduled to take place, at the November 2013 Eastern Partnership summit in Vilnius. The Agreement would, if indeed confirmed, be not only the largest international pact that Ukraine has ever concluded; this exceptionally large accord – its 906-page main text is now freely available on the websites of the “Kyiv Post” and “Kyiv Weekly” – would also be the biggest contract that the EU has ever entered with a non-member state. Should it be signed, ratified and implemented, the Agreement would largely integrate Ukraine into the EU market, as well as politically bind Kyiv to Brussels. It is more than an ordinary treaty: The Association Agreement constitutes a detailed plan for a deep restructuring – or “Europeanization” – of the Ukrainian economy, society, and state. Once fully realized, it would put Ukraine’s relations to the EU on an entirely different footing.

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