Discussion of the Association: “New opportunities for Ukrainian business: Agreement about cooperation between Ukraine and the United Kingdom”
On January 28, 2021, the Discussion dedicated to the ratification of the Agreement between Ukraine and the United Kingdom on Strategic Partnership and Free Trade (hereinafter — Agreement) was held and organized by EBA regional Offices. Alla Savchenko, Head of the EBA Dnipro Coordination Council, noted that Agreement is saving the preferential access of Ukrainian goods to the UK market and free trade zone between the countries. It gives also new hopes and opportunities for cooperation between companies of different business sectors.
The EBA member-companies’ representatives and speakers of the meeting commented on the Agreement’s provisions, that in practice businessmen had difficulties with documents and transportation issues, cause the formats are different in Britain and Ukraine and they need more time to solve that.
Oleksandr Lazarev, Head of the EBA Odesa Coordination Council, Co-Chairman of the EBA Customs Committee, mentioned the meeting of the Customs Committee, which took place in December of 2020, and was mainly focused on covering forecasts for the Agreement. In particular, following the UK’s withdrawal from the EU, it was important for businesses to understand how the country of origin of goods would be determined now. Mr. Oleksandr noted that the business community was pleasantly surprised by the speed of adoption and ratification of the Agreement by Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine. Some Ukrainian companies have already faced with some questions in customs clearance of goods in import and export mode.
Special guest Volodymyr Storozhchuk, Head of the Goods Origin Department of the Customs and Tariff Regulation Department of the Customs Payments and Customs Tariff Regulation Department of the State Customs Service of Ukraine, provided comments and shared answers to problematic questions addressed by business owners. In particular, regarding the certification of export products, transport documentation, confirmation of direct transportation and criteria of origin of goods. He noted that the status of an authorized exporter of the EU after Brexit is not valid for those companies that have received an authorization number in the EU and now have to check it in a special system in order to export freely to Britain.
In turn, Igor Sokolovsky, Senior lawyer of Advice Group, Chairman of the EBA Lviv Customs Committee spoke about his concerns about direct deliveries, as well as outlined some nuances of transportation and customs clearance.
The invited speakers and experts highlighted the trade part of the Agreement, which is the most interesting for business and exporters. After signing it, there was a great opportunity to seriously increase its agricultural exports appeared, because the UK is one of the largest markets. Thank you to the participants for the active dialogue!
On December 16, 2020, the Agreement on Political Cooperation, Free Trade and Strategic Partnership between Ukraine and the United Kingdom of Great Britain was ratified by the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine.
Based on data for 2019-2020, the main goods imported to the United Kingdom from Ukraine were iron and steel (177 million pounds) and grain (173 million pounds), which together account for more than half of the goods imported from Ukraine.