Autonomous Trade Measures for Ukraine Renewed

The autonomous trade measures (ATMs) allow Ukraine to continue generating its own income from trade flows with the EU, which is important to support its economy under very challenging circumstances.

More than two years after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, the Confederation of Industry of the Czech Republic together with BusinessEurope (incl. two observer members from Ukraine), reiterate its strong support to Ukraine and its people. More than ever the EU needs to ensure that emergency support continues to flow to the country, and that infrastructure and businesses are kept operational.

In this respect, we support the renewal of the EU’s autonomous trade measures (ATMs) to enhance bilateral trade with Ukraine. Combined with the implementation of solidarity lanes, these liberalisation measures have been critical to facilitate the flow of goods, including commodities, in and out of the country. This is key for the survival of businesses on the ground, to ensure they remain integrated in existing value chains, and to sustain Ukraine’s economy.

While acknowledging these measures must consider sensitivities and the overall EU interests, they should adhere to the principles of the integrity of the Single Market and the EU’s exclusive competence in trade policy. In this regard, we hope the adoption and implementation of the measures will help resolve any remaining concerns that have led to actions at the borders and obstructed the flow of goods between Ukraine and the EU. Transport routes should remain open. This is beneficial for both Ukraine and the EU. Preserving the rule of law and the respect of the EU’s international commitments is essential for the European business community.

The renewed regulation will apply from 6 June 2024 until 5 June 2025 and concerns the continued suspension of all outstanding customs duties and quotas under Title IV of the Association Agreement between the EU and Ukraine establishing a deep and comprehensive free trade area (DCFTA).

The regulation will also include two safeguard mechanisms to protect the EU market

  • a strengthened version of the existing mechanism, which will apply on the basis of regular monitoring, allowing the Commission to impose any safeguard measure if specific conditions are fulfilled
  • a new, automatic safeguard mechanism which will oblige the Commission to reintroduce tariff-rate quotas if imports of poultry, eggs, sugar, oats, maize, groats and honey exceed the arithmetic mean of quantities imported in 2022 and 2023.

Key elements of the provisional agreement

  •  extending the scope of the automatic safeguard mechanism to four additional products (oats, maize, groats and honey)
  • shortening of the time period for activation of the automatic safeguard (from 21 to 14 days)
  • the Commission’s commitment to enhanced monitoring of imports of wheat and other cereals and use of the tools at its disposal in the event of market disruptions

Next steps
The Parliament’s position at first reading is expected to be adopted at one of the April plenary sessions. The regulation is then to be adopted by the Council before entering into force on 6 June 2024.

Sources: BusinessEurope;

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