European Parliament approves extension of temporary trade support measures for Ukraine

The European Parliament voted on April 23 to endorse the extension of temporary trade liberalisation measures for Ukraine, in a move billed as also protecting EU farmers.

With 428 votes in favour, 131 against and 44 abstentions, MEPs backed extending the suspension of import duties and quotas on Ukrainian agricultural products for another year, until June 5 2025, to support the country amid Russia’s continuing brutal war of aggression.

Under the new regulation, the European Commission can take swift action and impose any measures it deems necessary should there be significant disruption to the EU market or the markets of one or more EU member states due to Ukrainian imports (for example, wheat).

As part of reinforced safeguard measures to protect EU farmers, the Commission can trigger an emergency brake for particularly sensitive agricultural products, namely poultry, eggs, sugar, oats, groats, maize, and honey.

If imports of these products surpass the average of import volumes recorded in the second half of 2021, and all of 2022 and 2023, tariffs can be re-imposed.

As part of the agreement on these new rules, the Commission pledged to launch talks with Ukraine on permanent trade liberalisation soon, and keep the European Parliament closely engaged in the process.

The Council of the EU will now have to formally approve the regulation. The current trade measures expire on June 5 2024, and the new regulation should enter into force immediately following this date.

(Photo: Christa Richert/

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The Sofia Globe staff

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