Ukraine\'s accession to Customs Union is impossible, ambassador says

Ukraine's accession to the Customs Union of Belarus, Kazakhstan and Russia is impossible "above all due to economic motives," Ukrainian Ambassador Roman Bezsmetrnyi told reporters in Minsk on August 18, as quoted by BelaPAN.

"At present Ukraine's entry into the Customs Union will be a huge economic loss for it and an even bigger loss for the union's member states," he said.

However, he added, "one should never say never." "If economic motives allow Ukraine to see its interest in this, Ukraine will be happy to join this cooperation," the diplomat said.

Ukraine is a member of the World Trade Organization, which is "an extremely important reason for the entire world market to be open to Ukraine," Mr. Bezsmertnyi said.

"In order to join the Customs Union, we need to quit the WTO. And now choose: the markets of 160 countries or the markets of three countries," he said.

"Our position is to remain a WTO member but look for forms and means of cooperation with the Customs Union countries and ways of cooperation between the Customs Union countries and WTO members."