Ukrainian exporters say that inefficient and non-transparent VAT refunds system and high levels of bureaucracy are the biggest obstacles for export. The survey also reveals that smaller enterprises tend to be more burdened by complicated customs procedures and lack of transparency in the operation of tax agencies.
The fiscal position of the Government remains comparatively strong. The Government is expected to continue reforms implementation, which would also result in additional support by official international donors. Overall, real GDP is expected to grow by 1.7% in 2016.
Ukraine may find itself with new Government in the very near future. Frequent government changes do not help the country as there is little to ensure continuity in government policies. Budget planning is done on a single-year basis, senior civil servants are frequently replaced along with politically appointed Ministers.
Businesses in Ukraine want the customs procedures to become less income-focused and instead, to be aimed at facilitating trade. As the 2015 survey of Ukrainian businesses by the Institute for Economic Research and Policy Consulting showed, changes in trade regulations and customs rules are needed to boost international trade.
On January 1, 2016, provisional application of the Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Area (DCFTA) with the EU started, which lowers duties on the EU goods. Import duty surcharge (at 5-10%) was cancelled. Further we try to analyse impact of these events on international trade.
2015 was a year of many wins and losses for Ukraine. In the first half of the year, Ukraine faced a near-perfect storm of escalating military conflict, falling commodity prices and political instability. As a result already low export revenues went even further down and foreign currency reserves dropped to 5 billion dollars.
It is settled that provisional application of Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Area (DCFTA) between Ukraine and the EU will start since January 1, 2016. In a response, Russia is expected to increase trade barriers vis-à-vis Ukrainian goods.
Today, when we talk about increasing the export capacity of Ukraine, we can hear about the need to focus on exporting the high-tech products, products with high value added and a high level of processing – it seems very attractive because all of the above are important “export benchmarks” which should be strived for.
The forthcoming heating season of October 2015–April 2016 may be the most challenging season for the Ukrainian energy sector since Ukraine’s independence. Each subsector of energy sector has its own challenges in addition to the general problems such as the military conflict in the East, currency depreciation, debt accumulation, and high inflation.
In February 2015, the Institute for Economic Research and Policy Consulting (Kyiv) held its regular quarterly survey of industrial enterprises as a part of its Business Tendency Survey. The respondents were asked a question “Can your company use the possibility to apply a reduced rate of the single social contribution?”. Let’s take a look at the results.