Ukrainian Prime Minister Mykola Azarov welcomes Russian President Vladimir Putin's proposal for intergovernmental consultations before Kyiv signs an association agreement with the European Union.
"Important proposals have been heard lately from Russian President Vladimir Putin regarding bilateral dialogue with the aim of determining the real influence of a free trade area with the EU on trade and cooperation between Ukraine and Russia. The Russian leader's position provides a constructive foundation for negotiations," Azarov said at a government meeting on Wednesday. Ukrainian Deputy Prime Minister Yuriy Boiko and Russian Deputy Prime Minister Igor Shuvalov had consultations on Tuesday to impartially assess the potential impact of the signing of a Ukrainian-EU association agreement on Ukraine's trade relations with Russia and the Customs Union, he said. "As Boiko reported to me, a substantive and constructive dialogue took place. We are seeking not simply to take stock of problems but also to find a solution on how to eliminate risks threatening our trade and industrial cooperation," he said.