Belarusian agro-ministry denies there are problems with sanitary certificates for Ukrainian agro-suppliers
The Agriculture and Food Ministry of Belarus has denied there are problems which make it difficult for Ukrainian companies to receive sanitary certificates and it does not see any reason for Ukraine to introduce duties on Belarusian products.
"It's hard to name this retaliatory action. We've introduced certification for all countries, not violating the law, not for the concrete country. No one, apart from Ukraine, has introduced restrictions against Belarus. All companies come and receive certificates," Agriculture and Food Minister of Belarus Alexei Bogdanov told reports at the Milk Business 2015 conference in Kyiv on Thursday.
Bogdanov said that the introduction of the certification did not affect imports of Ukrainian agricultural products to Belarus.
In January-September 2015 imports from Ukraine to Belarus fell by only 6.5%, while exports of Belarusian agricultural products fell by one third, to 34% of last year’s level.
In turn, Deputy Agricultural Policy and Food Minister of Ukraine Dmytro Shulmeister said that Ukraine expected Belarus to be friendlier while issuing certification and he said that Ukraine is ready to hold talks on the current situation.
"We held talks… Unfortunately, this decision was made… They introduced certification for all countries, but we expected that they would be friendlier to us. We will hold negotiations," he said.
Bogdanov said that no negotiations were held before Ukraine introduced the imports duties on Belarusian goods.