KIEV, Feb.5 (Xinhua) -- Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych pledged Tuesday to promote the economic and social reforms needed for his country to get closer to the European Union (EU)
"Any modernization is always painful, but we have been engaged in a reform process during the past three years, and we will continue following this path," Yanukovych said here during a meeting with European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) President Suma Chakrabarti.
Ukraine should be given more time to implement the needed reforms, Yanukovych said, adding Kiev was still committed to closer ties with Europe.
Yanukovych thanked the EBRD leadership for its contribution to Ukraine's development efforts as a part of its reform plan.
Chakrabarti pledged the bank's further financial support to Ukraine.
"We have supported Ukraine even last year, despite the worsening economic situation in Ukraine and abroad," Chakrabarti said.
The EBRD is the largest financial investor in Ukraine. Last year, the bank committed more than 950 million euros (about 1.3 billion U.S. dollars) through 35 projects.