Russia to Keep Trying to Resolve Trade Dusputes with EU, Ukraine – PutinRussia | December 22, 2015, Tuesday // 17:17| views
Russian President Vladimir Putin gestures as he speaks during his annual news conference at the World Trade Center in Moscow, Russia, 17 December 2015. Photo EPA/BGNES
Russian President Vladimir Putin has said that Moscow will continue making efforts to resolve existing disputes in its trade relations with the European Union and Ukraine, Reuters reported on Tuesday, citing Russian news agencies.
"I think we will return to these issues more than once. We want to normalise relations (in trade) with our partners - with Ukraine and with the European Union," Interfax news agency quoted Putin as saying, according to Reuters.
Last week Putin ordered his government officials to suspend Russia's free trade zone with Ukraine from 1 January 2016 due to "extraordinary circumstances affecting the interests and economic security" of Russia.
Last week, Russian President Vladimir Putin signed a decree to suspend Moscow’s 2011 free trade treaty with Ukraine, starting from January 1, 2016. Currently, trade between Russia and Ukraine is conducted in accordance with the free trade agreement between CIS countries. A free trade deal between Ukraine and the European Union is set to enter into force from January 1 when the economic part of Kiev's association agreement with the EU comes into force.
Russia is unwilling to sacrifice its own economic interests to allow Kiev to benefit from the free trade zone with the European Union after the Ukraine-EU association agreement comes into force, the Russian Foreign Ministry said on its website on Tuesday.
“It’s unclear why Russia has to pay for that choice. We have our own economic interests that we have no plans of sacrificing, especially to satisfy foreign ambitions,” the ministry said, according to sputniknews.com.