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“This is a historic moment”

Verkhovna Rada ratified a free trade agreement between Ukraine and Canada
15 March, 2017 - 18:32
Photo by Ruslan KANIUKA, The Day

A total of 272 MPs voted for this decision on Tuesday. As noted in the explanatory memorandum, the ratification of the agreement will promote the development of bilateral trade and economic relations between Canada and Ukraine, provide benefits for Ukrainian producers in terms of duty-free market access to Canada, and open new markets, reports Interfax-Ukraine. The agreement was signed on July 11, 2016 in Kyiv.

First Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Economic Development and Trade Stepan Kubiv said during his speech in Parliament that according to preliminary research, being free of import duties to Canada would allow Ukrainian producers of food, chemical, petrochemical, machinery, and light industries to maximize benefits on Canadian markets. On the other hand, the agreement will enable the import of raw materials and advanced technologies that will contribute to economic growth.

According to the forecast calculation, the adoption of this agreement will lead to a slight loss of revenue, especially from the abolition of import duties which will amount to 1.2 million dollars lost during the first year. However, it is assumed that in the medium term the shortfall will be offset by VAT, and by increase in foreign direct investment.

“This is a historic moment for our bilateral trade with Canada. It is a country that has been systematically, permanently supporting Ukraine and helping in the development of the economic potential of our country. This agreement opens a symbolic transatlantic bridge of free trade,” said the president in the statement on the occasion of the ratification, which was published on the president’s website.

Poroshenko said that Ukrainian businesses are going to have access to the North Atlantic market, which will help Ukrainian exports. Also, the agreement will promote foreign direct investment in Ukraine up to the amount of 36 million dollars, will create new jobs in different industries, and provide duty-free access to 98 percent of export goods into the Canadian market.

“In fact, we are creating a free trade triangle: Ukraine-Canada-EU,” the president said. “It is because the free trade zone Canada-EU is also being created,” he concluded.

By Ivan KAPSAMUN, The Day