On September 20, informal Ministerial meeting on trade took place in Brussels with the participation of First Vice Prime Minister/ Minister of Economic Development and Trade of Ukraine Stepan Kubiv, EU Commissioner for Trade Cecilia Malmström, Deputy Prime Minister for European Integration of Moldova Iurie Leancă and Minister of Economy and Sustainable Development of Georgia Giorgi Kobulia.
The meeting’s participants focused on the progress of implementation of the Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Area (DCFTA) of the Association Agreement between the EU and partner countries and its impact on bilateral trade in goods and services.
In an opening statement Stepan Kubiv noted the importance of meetings of such a format that enable Eastern Partnership countries to communicate effectively and share expertise in fulfilling their European integration aspirations, as well as to coordinate actions to revive trade with the EU countries and other states.
The First Vice Prime Minister of Ukraine emphasized, "Following a clear European strategy has allowed Ukraine to reorient the national trade to offset the huge losses that Ukrainian producers incurred as a result of a politically motivated decision by Russia to close its market for Ukrainian goods. Presently, the European Union is the largest trading partner of Ukraine with the share of trade in goods 41.8% of the total volume of foreign trade of Ukraine, while the share of the EU in Ukrainian exports of goods is 42.1%."
In the framework of his visit Stepan Kubiv met with EU Commissioner for Trade Cecilia Malmström. During the bilateral meeting, Stepan Kubiv thanked the EU for supporting Ukraine's European aspirations and personally Cecilia Malmström for her support of the course of implementing domestic reforms, as well as of the process of curbing aggression of the Russian Federation.
"The Agreement between the EU and Ukraine is the largest in terms of volume and content, therefore, our common huge objective should be to find the best tools for making full use of opportunities both with the EU and with the countries of the Eastern Partnership. For this purpose, it is important to hold such ministerial meetings on a regular basis. I suggest to conduct the next one in Kyiv", said Stepan Kubiv.
During the discussion on the proposed topics, Stepan Kubiv also presented the experience of Ukraine and the main results of the public procurement reform, which is an important part of Ukraine's commitments in implementing the EU-Ukraine Association Agreement.