Agriculture Minister Gerry Ritz and International Trade Minister Ed Fast announced this week that the Government of Canada has opened the Ukrainian market for beef from cattle under 30 months (UTM) and ready-to-eat meat. This new market access marks follows the lifting of Ukraine’s ban on Canadian beef products in 2014.
Canadian beef and ready-to-eat meat establishments eligible for export to the European Union are immediately granted access to the Ukrainian market. The Government of Canada is working closely with Ukraine to expand the number of establishments that are eligible to export, pending inspections from Ukrainian authorities, says the Canadian government in a press release.
Last week, Prime Minister Stephen Harper, alongside Ukrainian Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk, announced the successful conclusion of negotiations toward a Canada-Ukraine Free Trade Agreement. The Agreement will result in the elimination of the vast majority of Ukraine’s agricultural tariffs, including Canada’s beef, pork, pulses, grains, canola oil, processed foods, and animal feed.
“I am very pleased that the Canadian government has completed the negotiation of a free trade agreement with Ukraine,” says Joe Reda, president of the Canadian Meat Council. “A survey of Canada’s meat processors has confirmed the existence of significant long term interest in trade with Ukraine, not only as a supplier of high quality protein to Ukraine’s 45 million citizens, but also in the context of Ukraine’s access to the European Union and its trade with the countries of Eastern Europe.”
Ukraine’s global imports of beef products in 2014 were $17.1 million. Canada exported $35.5 million worth of agriculture and agri-food, and seafood products to Ukraine in 2014.