Dutch Derail Kiev's EU Association Agreement: Will the Deal Take Place at All?

© REUTERS / Valentyn OgirenkoA woman attends a flash mob to support a European treaty deepening ties with Ukraine on the eve of a referendum held in the Netherlands, in Kiev, Ukraine, April 5, 2016.
A woman attends a flash mob to support a European treaty deepening ties with Ukraine on the eve of a referendum held in the Netherlands, in Kiev, Ukraine, April 5, 2016. - Sputnik International
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Six months after the referendum in the Netherlands, Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte says that his country is likely to reject the agreement on association between Ukraine and the EU.

President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko speaks during a meeting of the Verkhovna Rada in Kiev - Sputnik International
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Many question what fate awaits the document now, and whether the deal be ratified any time soon.

According to Deutsche Welle, the situation surrounding the ratification of the Association Agreement between the EU and Ukraine is becoming increasingly complicated.

In a referendum that took place in April 2016, more than 60 percent of voters voted against the ratification of agreement between Brussels and Kiev. At that time, Rutte stated that it's necessary to find a legal compromise. However, recently he said that his country probably won't ratify the document at all.

"If the Netherlands won't indeed ratify the document at the state level, there's a possibly they'll also refuse to support it in the EU Council, which is supposed to approve the final version of the agreement at the EU level," the media source wrote.

Ukraine's President, Petro Poroshenko - Sputnik International
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Kiev, in its turn, severely criticized Rutte's statement, considering his stance "unacceptable." According to Ukrainian authorities, this demonstrates the unwillingness of the government to take responsibility for the decisions it made in the past (the main argument here is that the agreement had already been approved by Dutch Parliament before the referendum, namely in July 2015).

In 2014, the European Union signed an agreement with Ukraine to deepen political association and economic integration. Ukraine had to implement a series of political and economic reforms to gain free-trade access to the EU market.

Kiev also awaits the introduction of visa-free travel for its citizens; a final decision will be reached regarding this issue in the near future.

"The introduction of visa-free regime will ensure that Poland and other Eastern European countries will get extremely cheap labor from Ukraine," Russian economist Michail Delyagin told Life.ru. "There are no jobs in Ukraine, in principle, at least those which pay decent wages. And Poland still has farms and small businesses, so the Poles need workers ready to work their butts off for nothing."

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