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Training on "Legal, economic and political aspects of the Association Agreement and DCFTA" at Agro 2017 Exhibition

On June 8 at the Agro 2017 Exhibition Association4U project together with the Ministry of Agrarian Policy and Food of Ukraine held a one-day training on "Legal, economic and political aspects of the Association Agreement and DCFTA."

Training began with an opening remark by Olga Trofimtseva, Deputy Minister of Agrarian Policy and Food for European Integration. "The process of European integration has a lot of aspects. And these aspects are invisible for most people, – Trofimtseva appealed to the civil servants of the Agriculture Ministry present at the event. – Only you and I know that this is a large amount of daily work. But the results of our work would be felt by all Ukrainians. As we will all consume higher quality products. And not only consume, but also produce. "

To help listeners with a better understanding of the Association Agreement, Marina Chulayevska, senior coach of Association4U project, prepared a speech on the background of signing this document. She recalled what was the process of defining European integration course for Ukraine: from the Soviet times and the first years of independence and ending with the Revolution of Dignity and its consequences.

After Association Agreement entering into force, the Ukrainian government faces enormous task: to implement in national legislation numerous acts of the EU which are mentioned in the annexes to the Agreement. On procedure of planning and monitoring instruments to the Agreement, Association4U senior experts on sectoral policies Victoria Yershova and Alexey Kolesnikov made an address.

"In order to properly plan the stages of implementation of the Association Agreement you must clearly define the tasks of those responsible, indicators, status and terms of work", - explained Yershova.

Alexei Kolesnikov gave examples of weaknesses in planning the implementation of the Association Agreement. And also made emphasis on the evaluation results. "It is important that the result could be measured and compared with the obligation," - said the expert.

The last mentioned in the program speaker - Mark Hellyer, international specialist on DCFTA, was personally introduced by the Association4U Team Leader Janos Zakonyi. "Mark knows about all the advantages and disadvantages of the agreement that Ukraine signed with the EU. Mark knows many living examples of how this agreement works. And Mark, unlike me, is not so optimistic - he is a realist and tells all as it is. So I’m offering carefully listen to him. "

All those present in the room really listened with the interest about the differences between the various types of agreements, European standards, access to the EU market and protected geographical indications. Particularly strong reaction raised questions concerning licenses for the slaughter of animals. "According to EU rules, only those people who have been specially trained and certified are eligible for slaughter - said Heyler in response to a remark from the audience that in Ukraine, this practice is not developed. – Average farmers who kill their animals can eat them by themselves but they are not allowed to sell them to others. "

Separately, Mark emphasized that the Ministry of Agrarian Policy and Food of Ukraine should implement EU standards as soon as possible as Ukraine undertook the responsibility to do this by signing the Association Agreement. It is important not only because of getting the access to the European market of five hundred million customers. But because of getting the access to five hundred million wealthy customers who are willing to buy high-quality products. So let’s do not waste the time!