On 27 June 2014, Georgia, the Republic of Moldova (`Moldova`) and Ukraine signed Association Agreements (AA) with the European Union. These agreements have been fully in force with Georgia and the Republic of Moldova since 1 July 2016 and with Ukraine since 1 September 2017. Although they form the basis of the political association and economic integration of partner countries with the EU, they aim to promote economic development, long-term stability, transparency and predictability for businesses. The Association Agreements also provide for the creation of Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Areas (ACFTA) which, by phasing out tariff barriers, non-tariff and regulatory barriers, will create new opportunities for economic cooperation and trade, particularly for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), stimulate foreign direct investment, promote economic modernization and contribute to the creation of new jobs in the three countries. The Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Areas (ACFTA) are three free trade zones established between the European Union and Georgia, Moldova and Ukraine. The CCFTA is part of each country`s EU Association Agreement. They allow Georgia, Moldova and Ukraine to access the European single market in certain sectors and to give European investors in these sectors the same regulatory environment in the associated country as in the EU.  The agreements with the Republic of Moldova and Georgia were ratified and officially entered into force in July 2016, although some of them have already been provisionally implemented. The agreement with Ukraine has been implemented on an interim basis since 1 January 2016 and officially entered into force on 1 September 2017. Follow the link for more information on the implementation of trade and sustainable development (TSD) in trade agreements – TSD committees and civil society meetings Deep and comprehensive free trade zones created on the basis of association agreements with three eastern neighbours are more ambitious in terms of bilateral commitments than the eu`s traditional free trade agreements (FTAs) to date.
This is due to the depth and comprehensiveness of bilateral commitments that provide for the gradual economic integration of Georgia, Moldova and Ukraine into the EU internal market. The agreement regulates the terms of global safeguards, anti-dumping measures, subsidies and countervailing measures in trade. In the event of trade safeguards, the parties will use the corresponding agreements of the World Trade Organization (WTO). The agreement establishes the obligations of the parties to adequately and effectively implement international intellectual property agreements signed by Georgia and the EU, including the WTO agreement on trade-related aspects of intellectual property rights (TRIPS). In addition, the requirements of the agreement respect and specify the rights and obligations of the parties in the TRIPS agreement.