UK signs digital deal with Ukraine to remove trade barriers and support country's war recovery

Mon 20 Mar 2023
Posted by: William Barns-Graham
Trade News

ukraine uk deal

The digital agreement between the UK and Ukraine, which aims to support the country’s recovery from the war with Russia through trade, was officially signed today.

The deal was agreed to in principle last November and allows Ukrainian businesses to trade more efficiently and cheaply with the UK through the use of electronic transactions, e-signatures and e-contracts.

It also gives Ukrainian firms enhanced access to the UK’s financial services sector through provisions on cross-border data flows.

Historic

Business and trade secretary Kemi Badenoch said the deal is “historic” and opens a “new era of modern trade” between the countries.

“We are also extending tariff-free trade on imports from Ukraine to early 2024, providing much needed support to Ukrainian businesses,” she added.

Ukraine’s economy minister Yulia Svyrydenko said the deal highlighted how Ukrainian companies – particularly in the IT sector – remain “in demand around the world despite all the challenges of war”.

Digital recovery

The director general of the Institute of Export & International Trade (IOE&IT), Marco Forgione, welcomed the news, saying it highlighted the role trade plays in driving prosperity.

“International trade is a proven force for good in the world and Ukraine’s recovery will undoubtedly be fuelled on the trade it can conduct with its allies.

“The UK is taking a lead in this regard, putting digital trade at the heart of its efforts to support Ukraine’s recovery. Digitalisation allows governments to remove unnecessary barriers to trade, encouraging more efficient and profitable trade.

“We also support the extension of the removal of tariffs on imports of Ukrainian goods to early 2024. It’s clear the UK is pulling out all the stops to strengthen trade ties with Ukraine at this critical moment in the country’s history.”

Delegation

The signing took place at Mansion House today at the ‘Road to Ukraine Recovery Conference’, at which the Department for Business and Trade hosted a number of Ukrainian ministers, alongside 200 businesses and officials from the UK and abroad

The main Ukraine Recovery Conference – an international event held annually since 2017 – will be hosted in London in June. It was hosted in Lugano in Switzerland last year.