09.02.2017 Ukraine requested for the establishment of a panel regarding Russia’s measures concerning restrictions on traffic in transit from the territory of Ukraine through the territory of the Russian Federation to the third countries (Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan).
Since the application of the EU – Ukraine Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Area on 1 January 2016 and the suspension by the Russian Federation of the Treaty on a Free Trade Area between members of the Commonwealth of Independent States with respect to Ukraine, the Russian Federation has adopted and implemented a number of measures concerning suspension of road and rail transit from the territory of Ukraine to the territory of the Republic of Kazakhstan and since 1 July 2016 to the territory of the Kyrgyz Republic through the territory of the Russian Federation.
Experts estimate that about 79% of export supplies from Ukraine to Kazakhstan and 95% to Kyrgyzstan were negatively affected by restrictions and prohibitions applied by the Russian Federation.
As part of the counteraction to Russia’s trade aggression and in order to protect interests of Ukraine and Ukrainian exporters, last year the Ministry of Economic Development and Trade of Ukraine began the process of dispute settlement in the framework of the WTO on above-mentioned restrictions. Since the RF has failed to settle the dispute and has not reversed measures, Ukraine has decided to continue the proceedings and has requested the establishment of a panel in this case.
"Since the measures at issue were applied, export from Ukraine to the countries of Central / Eastern Asia in 2016 decreased by 38.3% compared to the 2015. Overall, the loss of exports to Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan estimated of over $0.4 bln. We strongly believe that the trade aggression of the Russian Federation including restriction of traffic in transit (and de facto almost complete ban) from Ukraine to third countries must obtain an objective assessment of the experts of the WTO and certainly should be abolished. This will eliminate the RF’s violations of the rights and interests of Ukrainian producers and exporters and allow our country to resume its transit potential. We believe in the validity of our position and will make every effort to bring it, "- commented the Deputy Minister of Economic Development and Trade of Ukraine - Trade Representative of Ukraine Natalia Mykolska.
The position of Ukraine is based on clear legal arguments and supported by strong evidence which provides support of key international partners, including, first of all, the EU and the US. We continue to work on counteraction to the Russian Federation trade aggression. The dispute concerning restrictions on traffic in transit is the second case of Ukraine against the RF in the WTO.
Currently, Ukraine gathers the materials for the next dispute, which covers numerous prohibitions and restrictions on Ukrainian imports to the RF.
14.09.2016 Ukraine requested consultations with the Russian Federation.
10.11.2016 consultations with the Russian Federation regarding restrictions on traffic in transit were held. During consultations, Russian party stressed the impossibility to achieve a mutually agreed solution as measures complained have been applied in order to ensure the economic security and national interests of the RF.
09.02.2017 Ukraine requested for the establishment of a panel.