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Ukraine to impose new economic sanctions against Russia

Ukraine’s prime minister Volodymyr Groysman has announced that the country’s government will impose bans and special duties on certain goods produced by Russian companies.

Speaking at a government session on May 15, the Ukrainian PM said that the ban applies to goods “that can be fully produced in Ukraine or can be replaced”. Among others, the embargo will be enforced on Russian cement, mineral fertilisers, plywood, as well as certain industrial products and vehicles.

From August, the government also decided to impose special duties on all products imported from Russia, with the exception of economically sensitive goods such as coal, gas, liquefied gas and pharmaceuticals.

“We want to prevent the outflow of capital from Ukraine to the aggressor state, to increase the capacity of domestic producers and, therefore, budget revenues,” Ukraine’s deputy prime minister for economic development Stepan Kubiv said, adding that the government expects budget revenues to increase by 141.2 million US dollars as a result of the new sanctions.

Prime Minister Groysman noted that the sanctions can be lifted if Russia “deescalates the trade war against Ukraine” and agrees to respects the country’s territorial integrity.

The restrictions package comes as a further response to Russia’s 2016 ban on importing Ukrainian goods, mainly agricultural and food industry products.

At the same time, the Ukrainian government expressed confidence that the EU will maintain its sanctions regime against Russia during the next European Council meeting in June. “In view of the behavior that Russia has demonstrated in recent months (…), we have no reason to believe that European countries will doubt the need for prolonging sanctions,” Ivanna Klympush-Tsintsadze, Ukraine’s vice PM for Euro-Atlantic integration told the Ukrainian press.