The 10th EU-Ukraine Summit took place in Helsinki on October 27th 2006. The EU was represented by the Finnish Prime Minister Mr Matti Vanhanen in his capacity as President of the European Council and by the President of the Commission, Mr José Manuel Durao Barroso. Prime Minister Vanhanen was accompanied by Minister for Foreign Affairs Mr Erkki Tuomioja and Minister for European Affairs/Minister for Foreign Trade and Development Ms Paula Lehtomaki. The President of the Commission was accompanied by the Commissioner for External Relations and European Neighbourhood Policy Dr Benita Ferrero-Waldner. The Ukrainian Delegation was led by the President Victor Yushchenkoaccompanied by Ukrainian Minister of Foreign Affairs Mr Boris Tarasyuk.

The Summit was the first such meeting after the Parliamentary elections in March, 2006, and the formation of the new Ukrainian government in August. The elections showed that the consolidation of democracy and the freedom of speech had been key achievements of the past two years. These need to be safeguarded. Three main points on the agenda were developments in the EU and Ukraine, EU-Ukraine relations and international issues.

The European Union and Ukraine agreed on the crucial importance of political and economic reforms in Ukraine and on the need for Ukraine to finalise the WTO accession process which would allow the development of stronger economic and trade relations with the EU. The Parties agreed on a joint comprehensive and ambitious approach to the new Enhanced Agreement between the EU and Ukraine, including a deep free trade area as an important element thereof. Both Parties are looking forward to the launch of official negotiations early 2007. The Parties also welcomed progress made in reforms in all fields covered by the EU - Ukraine Action Plan and agreed on the need to continue the implementation of the Action Plan.

The Summit welcomed increasingly close co-operation in the area of foreign and security policy, in particular as regards issues of regional stability and crisis management. It welcomed the alignment of Ukraine with EU positions on regional and international issues. Ukrainian and EU leaders confirmed their continued commitment to constructive cooperation in order to achieve a sustainable, comprehensive and just settlement of the Transnistrian conflict.  The Summit also welcomed the initiatives of President Yushchenko, which had brought new impetus to the settlement process. The Parties took note of the effective work of the EU Border Assistance Mission on the border between Ukraine and Moldova as an example of mutually beneficial and successful EU-Ukraine cooperation.  The importance of the continued implementation of the Joint Declaration by Ukraine and Moldova on customs was highlighted.  The leaders also discussed the situation in Belarus and Ukrainian-Russian relations and welcomed the strengthening of EU-Ukraine Security and Defense co-operation. It was noted that the considerable needs Ukraine is facing in the area of destruction of outdated arms and ammunition call for a global and coherent approach.  The EU's actions in this sector aim at helping Ukraine to enhance her destruction capabilities.

The Summit took note of progress on the joint implementation of the Memorandum of Understanding on energy co-operation. Significant work is being undertaken in cooperation with EU to enhance the security of energy supplies in Ukraine and the gas transit to the EU market. This includes cooperation for identifying options for reform of the Ukrainian gas transit system as well as the adoption by Ukraine of the EU legislation with respect to oil stocks, the electricity and gas sectors, the extension of the Odessa-Brody oil pipeline, the completion of the oil and gas Boyarka metrology centre, energy efficiency and renewable energy sources.

Joint efforts will continue in implementing several energy infrastructure projects in cooperation with the European Investment Bank and the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development aiming in particular at enhancing the transparency of cross border energy flows, the improvement of the efficiency of gas infrastructure, the metering of domestic energy consumption, and electricity network interconnections.

The EU welcomed Ukraine's intention of acceding to the Energy Community Treaty when the necessary conditions are met.

The Parties welcomed the recent conclusion of the « horizontal » air services agreement between the European Community and Ukraine that ensures legal certainty for air operations between the EU and Ukraine. They emphasised the importance of strengthening aviation relations between both sides and welcomed the Ukrainian efforts to further integrate into European aviation structures. In that context, they underlined the significance of full membership of Ukraine in the Joint Aviation Authorities.

The Parties reaffirmed the importance of cooperation in the area of Justice, Liberty and Security (JLS) and welcomed the progress that has been made in revising the EU - Ukraine Action Plan on Freedom, Security and Justice.

The Summit welcomed the successful completion of negotiations on the EC-Ukraine visa facilitation and readmission agreements and initialed both documents.

The Summit took note of the recent signature of a Memorandum of Understanding on a structured dialogue on agricultural issues.


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