Chapter 3: Assessing the external trade policies of the EU and Russia towards Ukraine: geoeconomic competition in Ukraine?
ExtractThis chapter examines trade as a sector of the EU–Russia–Ukraine triangular relationship. First, a section on the EU’s foreign trade policy towards Ukraine and a section on Russia’s foreign trade policy towards Ukraine is presented. Regarding the EU, after a brief overview of its historical trade relationship with Ukraine, its offer of a Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Agreement (DCFTA) is examined. For Russia, after a short survey of its historical trade relationship with Ukraine, its offer to Ukraine of membership in its fledgeling Eurasian integration projects (the Eurasian Customs Union, Eurasian Common Economic Space and Eurasian Economic Union) is analysed. The last section of the chapter first examines Ukraine’s response and then concludes that the triangular relationship was beset by competition, although this competition was somewhat mediated by the prevalent trade interdependence of the triangle. Indeed, despite the apparent zero-sum game at the heart of the trade relationship, the potential for trilateral cooperation remained in the background.
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