US suspends duty preferences for 155 Ukrainian imports due to copyright infringement

09 May 2018 | Ukraine
US suspends duty preferences for 155 Ukrainian imports due to copyright infringement

Ukraine’s Ministry of Economy and Trade published the full list of the items that are no longer allowed to be imported to the U.S. from Ukraine duty-free. It is available here.

The items on the list range widely from food products to clothing to sports equipment.

For example, the decision stops the duty-free import of fruit jams, apparel made of reptile leather, wooden statuettes, LED lamps, mittens, gold necklaces, skis, and more.

The preferential duties for Ukraine were suspended due to poor protection of property rights in the country, Omar Cardentey, deputy pressperson of the U.S. embassy in Kyiv, told the Kyiv Post.

“Ukraine was given a 120-day grace period from the date of the proclamation to address the intellectual property rights concerns, and we will continue to engage with Ukraine intensively on these issues,” Cardentey said on May 8.

Ukraine’s Ministry of Economy and Trade was unhappy with the decision and said it was talking to the U.S. government to “find a solution.”

According to the ministry, the suspension could be lifted only if the Ukrainian parliament passed the draft lawon the effective management of owners’ property rights.

Others have attributed the decision to U.S. President Donald Trump putting pressure on Ukraine.

On May 7, Forbes published an article hinting that the decision was of political nature rather than related to trade quality.

Some 3,500 product categories are still allowed to be imported from Ukraine to U.S. duty-free under the Generalized System of Preferences (GSP) program. Ukraine became one of the GSP beneficiary countries in 2015.

In 2017, Ukraine doubled its exports of goods to the U.S. to $828 million compared to the previous year, according to Ukraine’s State Statistics Service.