Ukrainian Minister for Foreign Affairs Borys Tarasyuk met with United States Assistant Secretary of State for Economic and Business Affairs Anthony Wayne and Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs David Kramer.
During the meeting the Foreign Minister expressed his appreciation of dynamic political dialogue between Ukraine and the USA at all levels and the need to further develop practical aspects of bipartite cooperation.
In this context the parties focused on the Ukrainian - American economic relations, in particular, stepping up bipartite trade - economic and investment cooperation and Ukraine's prospects for integration with the WTO.
The US Delegation expressed their support on behalf of US President George Bush and Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice of Ukraine's European and Euro-Atlantic drive, its accedence to the World Trade Organization, as well as realization of the Government's priorities in ensuring supremacy of law, combating corruption, further democratic transformations and economic reforms implementation.

Internal friction and confusion in the decision-making process prevented the government of Ukraine from effectively implementing economic transformations, the process of economic reform has resumed following the approval of Prime Minister Yuri Yekhanurov and other members of the Cabinet of Ministers.

Anthony Wayne, the United States assistant secretary of state for economic and business affairs, expressed this view at the Kiev International University.

According to him, admission of Ukraine into the World Trade Organization remains one of the most important priorities of the President Victor Yuschenko because membership of the organization will remove barriers to export to the almost 150 member-countries of the organization, and stimulate expansion of Ukraine's markets as well as attraction of foreign investments.

He also said that the Ukrainian parliament is conduct active work on draft laws aimed at minimizing state regulation of markets, which is one of the key conditions for Ukraine's admission into the World Trade Organization.

On the issue of protection of intellectual property, Mr. Wayne said that the issue remains a key one for the United States in its economic relations with Ukraine, Cabinet's press office reported.

According to him, the United States will closely monitor Ukraine's fulfillment of its obligations in this area and the decision on restoring Ukraine's preferences under the United states' general system of preferences would depend on the conclusion of experts.

According to Mr. Wayne, President George Bush's administration is seeking abolition of the Jackson-Vanik amendment's provisions in relation to Ukraine as well as establishment of normal trade relations between the two countries.

He stated the need for Ukraine to encourage investment by abolishing excessively bureaucratic procedures well as the need for a clear plan on re-privatization of assets.

He also stressed the need to fight corruption.

On the problems of the Ukrainian energy market and the energy policies of the government, Mr. Wayne said Americans were interested in possible hydrocarbon deposits on in Ukraine's territorial waters, particularly in the Black Sea.

He called on the government of Ukraine to set clear rules for operation in this sector and support the initiatives of American companies that have experience in developing mineral resources on sea shelves.

Foreign Affairs Minister Borys Tarasyuk also met with a delegation from the Swedish parliament on Thursday, the Ukrainian Foreign Affairs Ministry's press service has reported.

A broad range of international and bilateral cooperation issues were discussed during the meeting.

Tarasyuk informed the Swedish delegation about the development of the internal situation in Ukraine, particularly the formation of a new government, and preparation for the next parliamentary elections.

He also informed the delegation about the progress of realization of Ukraine's main foreign-policy priorities: integration into the European Union and NATO, development of inter-regional cooperation, and development of relations with Russia.

The head of the delegation assured Tarasyuk that Sweden would remain an active supporter of Ukraine's European Choice.


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