An agreement on a free trade area between Ukraine and the European Union is almost 90% complete, Ukrainian Prime Minister Mykola Azarov has said at a meeting with members of the European Parliament.

"We have yet to agree the positions linked to the exports of agricultural products to the EU, as well as the realization of the right of Ukrainian companies to provide services, including transportation services. And we have yet to resolve some minor disputable issues regarding geographical names and market protection instruments," he said, UKRINFORM reported.

Azarov said that Ukraine was most concerned about the EU position regarding the quota-based principle of the supplies of Ukrainian agricultural products to the EU market: "This position is not clear to us, because agricultural products such as wheat, barley, meat and other commodities are an important component of Ukrainian exports, which could have at least partially compensated for the deficit of the balance of trade between the EU and Ukraine."

He told the participants in the meeting that EU negotiators wanted to set fairly rigid quotas for Ukraine: "For example, the quota for wheat is to be set at 20,000 tons. This is despite the fact that Ukraine exports about 10-15 million tons annually. The quota for meat and poultry is to be set at 1,000 tons. The share of these products on the EU market accounts for an insignificant part of a percent."

Azarov said that the sides were now trying to reach a compromise on disputable issues. Ukrainian First Deputy Prime Minister Andriy Kliuyev will justify the Ukrainian position on these issues in Brussels on March 2-3.

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