President Petro Poroshenko is convinced that the signing of the Free Trade Agreement between Ukraine and Israel will not only promote cooperation between the two countries, but also improve the lives of people in both states.
"Today, in Jerusalem, we sign this Agreement and business representatives say that this will help make people's lives better in our countries, because it will make goods of our countries cheaper: Ukrainian goods - in Israel, Israeli goods - in Ukraine. We also plan to launch a new agreement on free trade of services - this is a wonderful idea," the Head of State noted before the ceremony of signing the document.
"This is a historic day in the relations between Israel and Ukraine. A historic day, as we have removed all the barriers in our economic ties, and I want to congratulate you and thank you for such cooperation," Petro Poroshenko added.
The President noted that hundreds of bureaucrats had tried to prepare an Agreement between Ukraine and Israel on free trade for years, to remove all restrictions in the economic sphere between the two countries. But in the end we have managed to do that now.
"We made one hundred pages in one year, and in total, it is one and a half thousand pages. And this became possible after our meeting in New York with the Prime Minister, then we met in Paris, where we actually finished everything. And one month after we completed all negotiations," he said.
The Head of State thanked the First Vice Prime Minister - Minister of Economic Development and Trade of Ukraine Stepan Kubiv and the Israeli side for the fruitful teamwork and implementation of the agreements between the Prime Minister of Israel and the President of Ukraine. "And today we have this historical document," Petro Poroshenko noted.
The President noted that Ukraine had studied the experience of Israel not only in the economic sphere, but also in the military one. "It's very simple. We learned from Israel how to defend our country, how to create a strong army. And we learned how to make a strong economy and ensure the prosperity of our people. We learned this from Israel and I think this is a very successful lesson," he said.
The Head of State also expressed gratitude to Prime Minister of the State of Israel Benjamin Netanyahu for the effective coordination of the work of our diplomats in international organizations. "We had a great success in the General Assembly, in UNESCO, and I want to thank for this very important support from our Israeli friends and partners," he emphasized.
The President expressed conviction that cooperation between Ukraine and Israel will be intensified and invited the Prime Minister to visit our country.
The Prime Minister of the State of Israel, in turn, said that it was the third visit of the President of Ukraine to Israel since his inauguration. "And this is a testimony of a strong relationship between Ukraine and Israel. These ties have deep historical and cultural roots. Ukrainian Jews make up a significant portion of the population of Israel. Ukraine is home to a large Jewish community," he said, noting that this community is the 4th largest Jewish community in Europe.
Benjamin Netanyahu noted the increase of investments and trade between the two countries in recent years. "Today, we are going to do something that will make it even bigger- we are about to sign the Free Trade Agreement. We have been working on this for many years. It is enormous. It is 1500 pages,” the Prime Minister of Israel stressed.
During the visit of the President of Ukraine, the parties also discussed ways of increasing cooperation in the technological sphere, healthcare, aerospace, science and others.
"We are building a more prosperous future for people. Each of us is doing it on our own, but I think that together we can do even better," Benjamin Netanyahu concluded.
Source: site of the Presidential Administration of Ukraine