PARIS (Reuters) - Unilateral trade preferences that the European Union is offering Ukraine will enter force at the end of this month or early next month, EU trade chief Karel De Gucht said on Thursday.
Brussels is giving Ukraine unfettered access to the 28-nation bloc's 500 million consumers even before a proposed bilateral free-trade accord comes into force later this year to cement Kiev's historic shift away from Russia.
"The trade preferences for Ukraine will enter into force at the end of the month or the beginning of next month," De Gucht told a conference in Paris.
"It's imminent," he said, adding the European Parliament had given its backing to the measures and EU member states would be next to give their views.
(Reporting by Leigh Thomas; editing by Mark John)