On 1 January 2016, the European Union (EU) and Ukraine start applying the Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Area (DCFTA). With the entry into force of the DCFTA both sides should ensure that markets for goods and services will be mutually opened on the basis of predictable and enforceable trade rules so that new opportunities will be created for the EU and Ukraine businesses, investors, consumers and citizens.
- Nevertheless, at the present, the logs export ban from Ukraine to EU territories is still into force.
Moreover, on 21 December 2015, a trilateral meeting was held between EU Trade Commissioner Mrs Malmström, the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine, Mr Klimkin and the Minister of Economic Development of the Russian Federation Mr Ulyukayev.
The discussions were focused on Russia's concerns on the implementation of the EU-Ukraine Association Agreement/Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Area (DCFTA), which should be provisionally applied as of 1 January 2016.
Regretfully, a political agreement on the practical solutions to Russia's concerns related to the DCFTA between the EU and Ukraine was not reached.
The EU Commission has offered to keep talking in a trilateral working group after 1 January 2016 in order to find practical solutions to all specific concerns raised by Russia on the condition that Russia did not take further retaliatory measures. Clearly, the EU Commission has expressed concerns and regrets concerning the decree by President Putin on 16 December that suspended all Russia's obligations vis-à- vis Ukraine – including the trade preferences- under the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) FTA. This decree might represent a breach on the part of Russia of the Ministerial agreement from September 2014 on the implementation of Minsk provisions.