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Ukrainian Parliament to introduce trade embargo against Russia

Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine (VRU) allowed the Cabinet to introduce retaliatory trade embargo against the Russian Federation on 1 January 2016
Ukrainian Parliament to introduce trade embargo against Russia

The draft law №3704 «On Amendments to the Law of Ukraine “On Foreign Economic Activity” (with respect to the powers of the government to apply adequate economic measures to Russia, earlier recognized by VRU as an aggressor state) was supported by 291 MPs, Joinfo.ua reports.

The idea of ​​the bill was put forward by the Prime Minister of Ukraine Arseniy Yatsenyuk.

The explanatory note says that Russia’s food embargo, coming into force on January 1, 2015, and the suspension of the Russian Federation of the agreement on free trade zone with Ukraine “in the near future (in the beginning of 2016) will pose a threat to the interests of national economic security and economic interests of Ukraine, to the legitimate interests of economic actors, and contain indications of discriminatory actions against Ukraine in the sphere of trade.”

“The purpose of the adoption of the draft law is a legislative regulation of powers of the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine concerning the operational use of appropriate measures in response to the state, recognized by the Verkhovna Rada as an aggressor, that harm or threaten the interests of national economic security and economic interests of Ukraine or the legitimate interests of subjects of foreign trade activities. The said purposes can be achieved by adopting supplements to the provisions of the Law of Ukraine “On Foreign Economic Activity” regulating Ukraine’s response to the actions of the aggressor state and / or occupying state, which could damage the interests of national economic security “, – stated in the note.

Presenting the law in the parliament, the Prime Minister said that Ukraine will introduce the retaliatory trade embargo against Russia on January 1, 2016.

“The law, which we urge the Parliament to adopt … will introduce similar restrictive measures against the Russian Federation on January 1, 2016. We will protect the internal market of Ukraine “, – said Yatsenyuk.

It should be recalled that on December 16, Russian President Vladimir Putin signed a decree on the suspension of the free trade area agreement with Ukraine.

Russian Ministry of Economic Development estimated the losses due to the introduction of a free trade area between Ukraine and the EU to amount to $3.5 bln.

On December 21, another round of talks regarding Russia’s concerns about the EU-Ukraine free trade agreement brought no results.

Russian Minister of Economic Development Alexei Ulyukayev said that Ukraine and the EU showed unwillingness to meet Russia’s concerns halfway. Thus, the Russian Federation cancels the FTA with Ukraine and put food embargo into force from January 1, 2016.

In turn, the EU Trade Commissioner Cecilia Malmstroem said “there was not enough flexibility on the Russian side” during what was the 22nd round of talks between the three sides over almost 18 months.