KYIV, Ukraine, September 25, 2013 /PRNewswire/ --
Ukraine's aspirations for the European integration define the country's development path. This was stated by the Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych in his speech at the 68th Session of the UN General Assembly in New York.
Ukraine contributed to the "larger" Europe, uniting interests and development goals of the east and west of the continent, said the president. He added that the anticipated signing of the EU-Ukraine Association Agreement, planned for November 2013, will benefit Ukrainians' welfare.
"I strongly believe that the signing of the Association Agreement between Ukraine and the EU in November of the current year, including the creation of a deep and comprehensive free trade area, will become an important tool for improving the welfare of Ukrainian citizens and thus will contribute to the achievement of our country's Millennium Development Goals," commented Yanukovych.
He emphasized that Ukraine gradually moved toward integration and worked for the Association Agreement to be signed at the upcoming Eastern Partnership Summit in Vilnius. This was stated at the meeting with EU member-states' Presidents Bronisław Komorowski (Poland), Ivan Gašparovič (Slovakia), Toomas Hendrik Ilves (Estonia), Andris Bērziņš (Latvia), Rosen Plevneliev (Bulgaria), Ivo Josipović (Croatia), and Borut Pahor (Slovenia). Viktor Yanukovych reassured his European colleagues, who supported Ukraine's European aspirations, that Ukraine was consistently dealing with the issues of European integration.
At the same time he highlighted that social justice served as the main criteria for conducting necessary reforms in Ukraine. According to the speech, the Eastern European country is currently undergoing the most extensive in its modern history program of reforms, aimed at social and economic improvements, as well as strengthening democratic regime and the rule of law.
"We want to consolidate the existing positive trend of many key indicators of national development. Among these indicators - eliminating poverty, providing quality education, protecting the environment, improving maternal health, reducing child mortality, etc.," said the president at the UN Assembly.
Notably, on September 24, 2013, EU member states agreed to offer provisional application of the EU-Ukraine Association Agreement, which would become possible immediately after the document is signed. This decision, however, does not in any way alter the conditions the EU set before Ukraine in December 2012 for signing the Association Agreement.
SOURCE Worldwide News Ukraine