Ukrainian agro dialogues: European integration, subsidies, production and prospects for new markets

Opportunities and challenges of agri-food industry discussed at the meeting initiated by European Business Association in Ukraine.

EBA Agro Dialogues 04.04.24
EBA Agro Dialogues 04.04.24


  • Mykola Solsky, Minister of Agrarian Policy
  • Taras Vysotskyi, Deputy Minister of Agricultural Policy
  • Philipp von Michaelis, CEO of Global Clearance Solutions
  • Oleksandr Samokhvalov, CEO of Loostdorf
  • Vadym Chaikovskyi, Deputy Head of State Service of Ukraine on Food Safety and Consumer Protection

Mykola Solsky, Minister of Agrarian Policy, focused on the export barriers

Of course, the first thing discussed was the situation on the Ukrainian-Polish border. Mr. Solsky emphasized that the situation with the import of products across this border depends very much on the products themselves. In particular, regarding cereals, there is an agreement not to import it through the territory of Poland, regarding raspberries and concentrates, the decision should be made shortly, etc. The issue of transit remains relevant. According to estimates, it (transit) is 200,000 tons of grain and meal. This is approximately 1 day of operation of the port in Odessa. So, really, the question is how it might affect the global value. The issue of assistance to agro business was also raised. Mr. Minister emphasized that, if we are talking about subsidies, then, in particular, until the end of the war, there will definitely not be any in Ukraine, but if and when Ukraine becomes part of the EU, such opportunities will open up. And, in general, the process of Ukraine's accession to the EU will be accompanied by a difficult internal discussion. And, yes, there is a question for whom in agriculture Ukraine is a partner, for whom a competitor, with whom the biggest discussions will take place. In addition, it will be necessary to adapt/develop a large number of documents in the agro direction - approximately 40% of all are related to agro.

Taras Vysotskyi, Deputy Minister of Agrarian Policy, emphasized the program of insurance against military risks.

Thus, within the framework of the Ukraine facility (EUR 8 billion), there is talk of fully launching insurance against military risks in Ukraine (by June). In general, in the context of EU integration, he emphasized that Ukraine has a good position in the context of negotiations on agriculture. But you have to understand that there will be no concessions. And there will definitely be a question whether the European Union is ready to take on such a big player in the agricultural sector. Regarding demining, Mr. Vysotsky noted that, as of today, about 480,000 hectares have been de-occupied (not all of them need demining, about 15% have been demined). In general, there is 2 million UAH in the budget + 1 million UAH of a special fund - for demining rural areas and MinAgro has a special algorithm for compensation of 80% of the cost of demining works; there is no upper limit on the cost. So he suggested that companies study this mechanism. In addition, he informed that the Center for Humanitarian Demining under the Ministry of Economy was recently established, but it is currently in the process of being launched

Philipp von Michaelis, CEO of Global Clearance Solutions presented his company, operating in demining sector in Ukraine

Global Clearance Solutions has its roots in Switzerland and started working in Ukraine already after the start of a full-scale war. Mr Vvn Michaelis confirmed that, indeed, there are some difficulties in the work. In particular, legislative imperfections to take commercial orders. In addition, the question of financing, the question of the qualification of operators. In addition, from the experience of working in other countries (Iraq, for example), the competition is still going on with humanitarian missions dealing with such issues. Nevertheless, he sees great prospects for work in Ukraine and invited other companies not to delay their decisions to start work in the country!

Oleksandr Samokhvalov, CEO Loostdorf, Chairman of the Dairy Committee of the EVA, focused on the dairy industry.

The company is involved in milk processing. With the beginning of the war, export opportunities were disrupted (because before that many products went through ports), logistics were disrupted. It is good that Europe abolished tariffs and quotas at that time - many businesses switched and changed their product portfolio in order to sell milk powder, butter, etc. on foreign markets (because the demand in the domestic market fell sharply). Currently, consumption in the domestic market has not returned until 2021 (last year consumption was 14% lower compared to 2021). It is difficult, in particular, due to problems at the border - logistics costs have increased (before that, 1 ton cost 100 euros, currently the price is 200-250 euros). And, in general, unfortunately, milk production is decreasing every year. If compared with Poland, 14 million tons of milk are produced there, in Ukraine And, yes, it covers domestic needs, but the volumes are not sufficient for export.

Vadym Chaikovskyi, Deputy Head of State Service of Ukraine on Food Safety and Consumer Protection emphasized that Ukraine is currently actively working and opening new markets

the last year 15 certificates were issued for export, this year - 4 certificates (Canada, Kuwait, etc.) - all products of animal origin. Among the nearest plans - the work with the EU in the context of aquaculture , export markets of Colombia and Indonesia, etc. Although, he also summed up, the prospects for EU integration are great, but this will lead to stricter supervision and control, in particular, currently in Ukraine it is possible to conduct no more than 7 inspections per year, after integration this number will be at least 7.

EBA Agro Dialogues 04.04.24 -  Carolien Spaans
EBA Agro Dialogues 04.04.24 - Carolien Spaans

EBA and participant of the event sincerely thank all the speakers for their interesting insights and sincerely hope that together we will be able to actively develop the agricultural sector in the country, adapt all norms and regulations for European integration, and put the agricultural sector in the country on an even higher level.

Source:  Agro dialogues: European integration, subsidies, production and prospects for new markets - European Business Association (