On March 20, a ceremony of signing the Digital Trade Agreement between Ukraine and the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland took place. The Agreement provides a legal framework for further development of the digital economy – from e-commerce to cybersecurity – and trade in digital products and services between Ukraine and the UK.
This is a new generation trade agreement focused primarily on preventing barriers in the future. It is important as countries around the world are increasingly regulating the digital sphere. For Ukrainian IT companies, maintaining free access to markets is a basic condition for further development.
On the Ukrainian side, the document was signed by Yuliia Svyrydenko, First Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Economy of Ukraine, and on the British side by Kemi Badenoch, Secretary of State for Business and Trade, President of the Board of Trade, and Minister for Women and Equalities.
Yuliia Svyrydenko expressed gratitude to the British side for the rapid and unprecedented military, financial and technical assistance from the first days of the full-scale invasion, as well as for the support in the field of digital trade.
“Today’s event is indeed a key moment in our bilateral relations, another big step towards expanding cooperation between Ukrainian and British businesses. The implementation of the Agreement will deepen Ukraine’s participation in global supply chains, promote SME development and women’s participation in the digital economy, and reduce barriers to participation in global digital trade,” said Yuliia Svyrydenko.
The First Deputy Prime Minister of Ukraine also emphasized the importance of today’s event in terms of Ukraine’s reconstruction. The signing of the Agreement will lay the groundwork for the practical content of the Ukraine Recovery Conference to be held in London in June this year, which will strengthen the Ukrainian-British investment partnership. In addition, the upcoming Conference will significantly contribute to mobilizing international support for Ukraine’s economic and social stabilization and post-war recovery.
In turn, Kemi Badenoch noted that the UK would continue to stand with Ukraine in its fight against russian aggression. She emphasized that the UK was interested in developing partnerships between businesses of both countries, further trade liberalization and implementation of joint projects to rebuild Ukraine.
It is worth noting that Ukraine became the second country in the world to sign a digital trade agreement with the UK. The first country to do so was Singapore.
The Digital Trade Agreement complements the Political, Free Trade and Strategic Partnership Agreement between the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland and Ukraine. The Agreement will enter into force after all domestic procedures are completed.