For the introduction of external control in Ukraine the West didn’t need to use all possible instruments. It was made not by NATO membership and not by membership in the European Union but by the simple association with EU. The aim was strategic to weaken Russia by contrasting Ukraine, sacrificing the last one. I must say that the West did it at this point.
It was made up a beautiful tale for the Ukrainians about Europe waiting for them, which with the association between Ukraine and the European Union will be able to give them what Russia will never give them. There are some forbidden fruit.
The first fruit is European values. But the first thing that Ukraine will get is refusal from its traditions against what half of the Ukrainians especially nationalists are opposed.
The second fruit is cheap and quality European goods. But they need to refuse from their industry and agriculture.
The third fruit is cheap European loans. But the maximum, which the western loans can bring, is the benefit to Western European banks.
The fourth fruit is the help with the reforms. But everything, that the western partners will do, is the adoption of reforms and laws which will be beneficial to the European Union at last.
There were more deceptive slogans made for strengthening the manipulation of the former Ukrainians moods. From the brightest I can remember “European education and medicine”, “visa-free regime”, “European salaries and pensions”, “free access of Ukrainian goods to the EU”, etc.
Azarov’s government understood what can be the real end of the European tale that was the reason to suspend preparations for the signing of the Association agreement with the EU. The result was “maydan” in Kiev, a state coup, the Crimea’s exit and war in Donbass. But anyway the association was signed by new government of Yatsenyuk in summer 2014, and since the January 1, 2016, free trade between Ukraine and the EU has been introduced.
What did the association really give to Ukraine? In my opinion, nothing good! As soon as free trade of Ukraine with the EU has become a reality, Russia closed its markets for Ukrainian goods immediately. Ukraine lost its main economic partner and its basic commodity market. The trade with the European Union was covered with quotas straightway, as it was stated in the application I-A of agreement about the association between Ukraine and the EU. Of course, they can trade without quotas, but in this case, European duties will make export from Ukraine unprofitable. Actually, Europe protects its market from Ukrainian goods.
What can Ukraine boast for the last half year? It is rapidly becoming a raw-material state. Ukrainian nationalists’ dreams of a cherry garden near the hut are realizing. However, the USSR once was the second republic in industrial potential in the Soviet Union. Now Ukraine is proud of that in the first half year of 2016 sunflower oil accounts for 11% of all the Ukrainian export to the European Unity, about 10% is corn, and 7% is semi-finished steel products.
But the main buyer of agricultural products is not the European Union, with which the association was concluded, but quite other countries: India and China as for oil, Egypt and China as for corn, Indonesia and Egypt as for wheat. The trade turnover with Russia fell by 35% in comparison with 2015, and by 80% in comparison with 2013. If the situation does not radically change the Russian market may be lost forever.
Till February-March Ukraine had exhausted all the quotes, given by the European Unity in 2016 for duty free delivery of sugar, barley, flour and chicken. There are the quotes in Ukraine for beef, pork, eggs, butter, milk, cream, condensed milk and yoghurts, powdered milk, but the Ukrainian manufacturers’ products of meat and dairy do not meet European quality standards. The Europeans require the certificates of quality, but it’s too expensive for the Ukrainian manufacturers.
“The European Union refused from Ukrainian dairy… We all know that they dilute milk in Ukraine – it is not the most frightening. The fact, that we stuff the animals with antibiotics, is more terrible. And there are these antibiotics in milk”, the CEO and founder of the Ukrainian Association of suppliers of retail chains Alexey Doroshenko said. Only 12 Ukrainian dairy companies were certified. The first trial supply of dairy from Ukraine to Bulgaria was held at the end of April.
The free trade practice with the EU is contrast a lot with Ukrainian representatives’ official statements. At the beginning of 2016 they optimistically announced in the press service of the Ministry of economic development: “The most important consequences of Free Trade Area (FTA) for enterprises will be an immediate cancellation of import duty for more than 97 % of all goods, which are exported from Ukraine to the EU, including agricultural goods. Only for 3% of export (some agricultural goods) import customs duties will be not cancelled completely. Even for these goods a definite part of export in the framework of tariff quotes will be realized on duty free basis”
As the economists from Russian Federation alerted, the association with European Union will bring Ukraine nothing but troubles. However, the politicians who came to power in a coup in February 2014 deliberately went to reveal Ukrainian national interests for European interests. Obviously, they got for themselves impressive financial compensations for that immoral act – the sale of the Motherland.
Marina Zheynova, the DPR People’s Council deputy
Official website of the DPR People’s Council