European and Ukrainian Agrifood Industry welcome the European Parliament INTA Committee vote that limits the damage of the emergency safeguards

20 March 2024 – Today the European Parliament INTA Committee voted on the renewal of the ATM’s for Ukraine. CIUS, EFG and UCAB are relieved that the INTA Committee has decided to vote in favour of a compromise that will contribute to both the EU and Ukrainian economies.

While we are glad that the proposed import limiting measures were not made worse by adding 2021 in the reference period, we regret that these unjustified emergency safeguards are included in the first place for sugar. The current unbalanced EU sugar market does not warrant limiting duty-free sugar imports from Ukraine. The annual sugar import need is between 2 and 3.5 million tonnes of sugar each year (explained in slides here). Imports from Ukraine in the marketing year 2022/2023 amounted to 400 000 tonnes. The compromise agreement will already significantly reduce sugar imports from Ukraine for the 2024/25 marketing year, with estimates suggesting a reduction of 3-4 times compared to the previous years of 2022/23 and 2023/24.

We strongly urge the European Commission to include sugar in the scope of products subject to enhanced monitoring, with a view to assessing the impact of  these safeguard measures on sugar using industries and consumers as well as on farmers and sugar manufacturers in both the EU and Ukraine.

We encourage the EU and Ukraine to launch as soon as possible discussions on  bilateral trade with a view to removing remaining tariffs and quotas, as envisaged by the EU-Ukraine Association Agreement.  We look forward to a more constructive way forward as we progress towards accession of Ukraine to the EU.

In the future any eventual safeguard measures should be proportionate and take into account the interests of all stakeholders. The provisions for reinforced safeguards in this agreement are not a model for the future.

Press Release is available here