Deputy Prime Minister for European and Euro-Atlantic Integration of Ukraine Dmytro Kuleba is convinced that industrial visa-free regime will create new horizons for the export of Ukrainian goods to European markets, and in case of Ukraine fulfills preparatory work, the EU assessment mission can arrive in the first half of 2020.
The official announced at a meeting with members of the European Business Association.
“As for the industrial visa-free regime: we are heading towards this goal. The focus of our attention, in particular, is a small enterprise that will be able to export its products to the EU,” said Dmytro Kuleba.
The Deputy Prime Minister told a success story of an entrepreneur in Mariupol, who had started her own business producing cat furniture, had found an opportunity to sell products online and had successfully entered the EU market: "That is for such people, in particular, we are creating the industrial visa-free regime."
The Deputy Prime Minister explained that under the industrial visa-free regime we mean not only the products of industry, but opening entire EU markets for non-foods. In his opinion, that will help reorient trade priorities from the agricultural sector, which currently dominates in the export structure, to other product groups. Dmytro Kuleba believes that notably small and medium-sized Ukrainian businesses will benefit from the industrial visa-free regime.
“If we complete our homework by the end of the year and pass the necessary legislation, the EU should send an evaluation mission in the first half of next year. They have not yet agreed to send such a mission: their prudence arises from their economic interests, but we are negotiating,” Dmytro Kuleba said. “The process of achieving the industrial visa-free regime is sometimes difficult. Much has already been done. We have to understand that this is no less complicated story than reaching an agreement on a simple visa-free regime. But we are seriously committed to achieving that,” he added.
The Association Agreement between Ukraine and the EU provides for the prospect of concluding an Agreement on Conformity Assessment and Acceptance of Industrial Products (ACAA, or so-called "industrial visa-free regime). At the beginning, ACAA can cover one or several sectors with gradual extending to all 27 sectors envisaged by the Agreement. It is expected that ACAA can cover up to one-fifth of Ukraine's exports to the EU, notably mechanical engineering industry products, thereby facilitating trade and strengthening the image of Ukrainian products in the global markets. The preparatory work that has been done by Ukraine (harmonization of legislation, quality infrastructure and market surveillance with EU standards) allows ACAAs to be concluded in at least three sectors.