The Ukrainian government has been actively analyzing and addressing unnecessary trade barriers that encumber trade, working to make the business environment simpler and more transparent for local and foreign companies. While the environment is improving, many trade barriers in Ukraine persist, including unpredictable discriminatory fees and product certification procedures. Non-tariff barriers include inconsistent customs values to imports, non-transparent certification requirements, cumbersome procedures for phytosanitary certifications, import licenses, and labeling requirements.
Although Ukraine zeroed its compulsory certification lists, its certification system remains in place. The certification system is based on the Law on Standards, Technical Requirements and Compliance Evaluation Procedures, Law on Standardization, Law on Conformity Certification, and the Presidential Decree “Provision on State Inspection on Consumer Rights Protection.” These regulations envisage the following compliance documents:
- Technical Regulations are legal public acts establishing mandatory requirements for products, services, or production processes to eliminate threats to national security, to protect life, health, and property rights of consumers, protect animals, plants and the environment. It may also contain requirements for terminology, labels, packaging, marking or labeling requirements as they apply to a product, process or production method. In recent years, Ukraine adopted over 30 Technical Regulations most of which mimic EU safety directives word-for-word.
- National (State) Standards (DSTUs) are documents approved by the competent authority, which provide guidelines or characteristics that relate to the products, production processes or services with which compliance is not mandatory. The standard also may include requirements for terminology, labels, packaging, marking, or labeling requirements as they apply to a product, process, or service. From the legislator’s perspective, a Standard is an auxiliary document that, if followed, will help achieve compulsory safety requirements listed in a Technical Regulation. However, producers are free to choose other production techniques that can yield the same safety results.
In November 2010, the Ministry of Health of Ukraine signed Order #971, approving a list of food products that require monitoring for genetically engineered or genetically modified organism (GMO) content. Among the groups of products to be tested and monitored are soybeans, corn, tomatoes, squash, melons, papaya, chicory, sugar beets, rapeseed, flax and cotton oils, wheat, rice, infant formula and specialty food products that contain the aforementioned plants and products of processing thereof, yeast and leaven, including products containing these ingredients.
The United States continues to engage with Ukraine under a Trade and Investment Cooperation Agreement (TICA) signed in 2008 and other dialogues to urge Ukraine to take steps to eliminate specific market access barriers, improve the transparency and predictability of Ukraine’s regulatory regime, advance the protection and enforcement of intellectual property (IP) rights, and improve the business environment to ensure fair and equitable treatment for U.S. businesses operating in Ukraine.
For more information and help with trade barriers please contact:
International Trade Administration