Netherlands benefits big from Ukraine/EU deal the Dutch didn't ratify
In the first nine months of 2016 Dutch companies exported more to the Ukraine than in the same period last year, according to figures from the European Commission (EC). The total trade between the Netherlands increased by 4 percent to 1.17 billion euros. According to the Commission, this can be attributed to the association agreement between the EU and Ukraine, the trade part of which took effect on January 1st, ANP reports.
The Netherlands is the only European Union country that hasn't ratified the association agreement. Which means the agreement can't be fully implemented. This is expected to be an important topic of discussion during the EU-Ukraine Summit that is happening in Brussels on Thursday. During this summit EU President Donald Tusk, EC President Jean-Claude Juncker and Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko will discuss "interrelationships".
A spokesperson for the Ukrainian Embassy in Brussels told ANP that the assocciation agreement is "obviously" on the agenda because "it's a very important issue". A senior EU diplomat told the news wire that Junker, Tusk and Prime Minister Mark Rutte are "constantly" talking about the issue. Rutte and his government is working on a compromise that aims to ratify the agreement, while easing the concerns of the Dutch who voted against the agreement in a referendum in April.
The leaders of the EU Member States will not be at the summit.