WASHINGTON – U.S.
Trade Representative Rob Portman and Ukrainian Minister of Economy Arseniy
Yatsenyuk today formally signed a bilateral agreement on market access issues as
part of Ukraine’s World Trade Organization (WTO) accession negotiations. The
bilateral agreement will create significant opportunities for U.S. producers and
exporters of industrial and agricultural goods and well as U.S. services
providers. This agreement is a major step towards Ukraine’s completion of its
"Ukraine’s commitment to broad-based reform and economic liberalization will
provide a welcoming environment for investment, both foreign and domestic. The
agreement also demonstrates Ukraine’s commitment to the international trading
system," said Ambassador Portman.
"U.S. support for Ukraine’s accession to the WTO goes back more than a
decade, and we are pleased to have reached this agreement. Trade Minister
Yatsenyuk and his team have worked tirelessly this last year. We will be working
with Ukraine and other WTO members in Geneva on the remaining multilateral
issues to finalize Ukraine’s terms of accession to the WTO," Portman said.
"In November, the U.S. Senate approved a bill terminating application of the
Jackson-Vanik amendment to Ukraine. I look forward to working with the U.S.
Congress on such legislation that can be sent to President George W. Bush for
signature," Portman added.
Ukraine’s tariff commitments in the agreement include eventual duty free
entry of information technology, e.g., computers and semiconductors, and
aircraft products and harmonization of tariffs on chemical imports at very low
or zero rates of duty.
U.S. service providers will benefit in particular from more open access in
the areas of energy services, branching in banking and insurance, professional
services, express delivery, and telecommunications, among others.
The bilateral agreement also addressed concerns related to specific sanitary
and phytosanitary measures of priority to U.S. exporters, shelf-life standards,
protection of undisclosed information for pharmaceuticals and agricultural
chemicals (as required by the WTO), imports of information technology products
with encryption, the operation of state owned firms based on commercial
considerations, and reduction of export duties on non-ferrous and steel
Congressional action is necessary to terminate application of Jackson-Vanik
to Ukraine. This will clear the way for the two countries to apply the WTO
Agreement between them when Ukraine becomes a WTO member.