Business wants better Ukraine legal framework

8th March 2005, Comments 0 comments

8 March 2005, BERLIN - German business leaders called for better legal protection for investment in Ukraine ahead of talks with Ukrainian President Viktor Yushchenko who arrived in Germany on Tuesday for high level talks. "German business sees good chances... for closer economic cooperation on the condition that the legal framework is improved and there is more transparency and predictability in decision-making," said a statement by the influential business lobby, the Committee on Eastern European Economic

8 March 2005

BERLIN - German business leaders called for better legal protection for investment in Ukraine ahead of talks with Ukrainian President Viktor Yushchenko who arrived in Germany on Tuesday for high level talks.

"German business sees good chances... for closer economic cooperation on the condition that the legal framework is improved and there is more transparency and predictability in decision-making," said a statement by the influential business lobby, the Committee on Eastern European Economic Relations.

Business leaders were due to meet with Yushchenko Tuesday evening following his formal welcome by Germany's mainly ceremonial President Horst Koehler and talks with Foreign Minister Joschka Fischer.

Fischer is under pressure in Germany for having liberalised visa policies for Ukraine which apparently led to many illegal workers entering Germany and the European Union.

Germany is only the seventh biggest investor in Ukraine with about EUR 500 million of direct German investment concentrated in the automotive, construction, energy and agriculture sectors, said the statement.

The total volume of German-Ukrainian trade last year was worth EUR four billion, the statement said.

Political talks with German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder on Wednesday are expected to be dominated by Yushchenko's calls for EU membership for his country.

In an interview with the newspaper Die Welt, Yushchenko predicted Ukraine will be an EU member well before 2016.

The Ukrainian leader is also due to address the parliament in Berlin on Wednesday.

A senior member of Germany's opposition Christian Democratic Union (CDU) rejected admission of Ukraine to the 25-nation E.U.

"Full membership for Ukraine in the EU is unreachable in the foreseeable future given current, enormous shortfalls in its economic development," said Matthias Wissmann, the CDU chairman of the German parliament's European Affairs Committee.

Wissmann said the EU should not make the same "mistake" with Ukraine that it has made with Turkey. EU leaders last year agreed to begin accession negotiations with Ankara - a move opposed by many German conservatives.

Instead of full membership, Wissmann called for Ukraine to be given what he termed "a privileged partnership" with the EU which would include free trade and expanded economic and security ties.

DPA

Subject: German news 

 

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