In trilateral discussions in early September 2014, the European Commission, the Ukrainian and Russian governments agreed to postpone the provisional implementation of the agreement until the end of 2015. “We have agreed to postpone the request until 31 December,” EU Trade Commissioner Karel De Gucht said on 12 September 2014 in Brussels, at the end of talks with Alexey Ulyukaev, Russia`s economy minister, and Ukrainian Foreign Minister Pavlo Klimkin. According to Interfax, Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko was in favor of the decision. Pavlo Klimkin said that Ukraine would also benefit from this postponement: “This is a very important decision and we are very grateful to the EU for offering privileged access to the European market. This will allow our businesses to prepare for further trade liberalization.Â  EU countries have not yet been allowed. Unilateral trade facilitation – the abolition of import duties into the EU – remains in force, subject to the approval of the EU Council of Ministers. Customs duties on EU products exported to Ukraine are maintained. The agreement with Kosovo was the first to be signed after the entry into force of the Treaty of Lisbon, which has the legal personality of the EU.   As a result, an EU representative in Kosovo said: “Unlike the SAA with other countries in the region, this will be exclusively the EU agreement. The EU will sign it as a legal entity.Â  The agreement did not have to be ratified individually by each member state, some of which did not recognise Kosovo`s independence.  The representative continued: “Since Kosovo is not recognised by the five member states, we had to adopt a directive stipulating that the signing of the agreement does not mean that the EU or any of the countries recognise Kosovo as a state.”  Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych reaffirmed his commitment to the agreement in his annual speech on Ukraine`s Independence Day on August 24, calling it an incentive for Ukraine to become a modern European state. In the same speech, he also called for building relationships.” Russia, countries of the Eurasian community, other world leaders and new centers of economic development.Â  Pro-European Ukrainian opposition politicians commented that the Russian action was in line with a leaked document that outlined a Russian government strategy to extend the customs union of Belarus, Kazakhstan and Russia to Ukraine and prevent its continued association with Euro-Atlantic structures. The 14-page document lists, among other things, efforts to promote pro-Russian rhetoric in media dominated by anti-Russian views, sanction pro-European Ukrainian entrepreneurs, TV moguls and politicians, efforts to elect pro-Russian Viktor Medvedchuk to the presidency in 2015, and then the cleansing of pro-European officials.
The document also mentions cooperation with Belarus and Kazakhstan in this regard.   Experts who commented on the “leaked document” argued that Medvedchuk had no chance of winning the 2015 presidential elections and could not seriously disrupt the signing of the association agreement.   The Association Agreement is, in its scope and thematic scope, the largest document of international law in the history of Ukraine and the largest international agreement ever concluded by the European Union. . . .