News Tag: CUFTA
The CUTIS project improves government officials’ knowledge of international investment law

The CUTIS project held a 2-day webinar for government officials on international investment law.

The speaker – J. Anthony VanDuzer, Hyman Soloway Professor of Business and Trade Law, University of Ottawa.

The webinar provided an overview of the international investment regime, including bilateral investment treaties and investment chapters in free trade agreements, and current reform discussions. The emphasis was on policy implications rather than the technical detail of investment treaty provisions.

The first day was devoted to the substantive investor protection standards and investor-state dispute settlement (ISDS) arrangements in existing investment treaties along with a discussion of treaty practise and the issues that have arisen in practice.

Canada’s treaty practice and ISDS experience were used as a case study.

The second day was addressed possible reforms to investor protection standards and ISDS. The speaker canvassed treaty drafting strategies that are designed to better balance investor protection with the host state’s right to regulate compared to traditional treaty protections as well as alternatives to investment treaty protection. He also covered proposals for ISDS reform focussing on the reforms currently being discussed in UNCITRAL Working Group III, including the EU proposal for a multilateral investment court.

CUTIS buttresses the development of Ukrainian exports and trade in services

Trade in services is a dynamic area where new and non-conventional negotiating instruments and techniques emerge (e.g., ‘negative’ and ‘hybrid’ listing approaches, ‘standstill’ and ‘ratchet’ clauses, etc.). Therefore, it is vitally crucial for Ukrainian services negotiators to strengthen their negotiating capacities and skills with the new/emerging negotiating instruments and techniques.

On May 22, the CUTIS project held a webinar for government officials on negative listing scheduling techniques in trade in services.

The event is intended to refresh participants’ memory of how services are traded and delve into the peculiarities of the ‘negative listing’ technique, which is new for Ukraine.

The webinar was addressed by Pietro Poretti, an independent trade consultant, a member of the Secretariat of the European Free Trade Association (EFTA) and a participant in the negotiation process of free trade agreements in the past.

Pietro provided the participants with the knowledge and techniques to schedule commitments for service sectors or sub-sectors under the so-called ‘negative listing approach’. He drew the difference between ‘positive’ list (traditional under the GATS), ‘negative’ list (e.g., CETA), and ‘hybrid’ approach (e.g., TiSA).

The CUTIS project expects that new knowledge prepare Ukrainian officials for the negotiations on services as well as to buttress the capacity of Ukraine’s representatives in current FTAs negotiations with other countries.

How to export IT services to Canada – webinar

The Greater Toronto Area is considered to be one of the world’s main high-tech hubs rated next to the Silicon Valley of California, Boston, Seattle and Washington in the United States.

There is a growing demand for IT professionals in the Canadian market. Approximately 216,000 new jobs will be created in the sector by the end of the year 2021. Due to immigration and the involvement of students from Canadian universities, the country will be able to meet only 30% of these needs.

Thus, the conclusion is obvious: Canadian companies will look for opportunities to attract foreign professionals and companies. And this is an excellent chance for Ukraine!

The CUTIS project and the Canada-Ukraine Chamber of Commerce hold a webinar “Export of IT services to Canada: presentation of the export manual and recommendations from practitioners.” Information partner of the event – IT Ukraine Association.

Maxim Boroda, CUTIS Ukrainian Senior Trade Analysis Expert, told about key parameters and trends in the Canadian ICT market (download the presentation).  

Oleksandra Brovko, CUTIS Ukrainian Senior Trade Policy Expert, analyzed the main conditions and requirements for the export of IT services to Canada (download the presentation).

Features of Canadian business culture and marketing activities in Canada were discussed during the presentation of Olga Shtepa, CUTIS Ukrainian Project Coordinator (download the presentation).

John de Boer, SecDev Group Principal, paid attention to new opportunities for the Ukrainian companies in the Canadian IT market in the time of COVID-19 (download the presentation).

Igor Volzhanin, СЕО DataSine, shared his experience in fundraising, business culture and digital customer acquisition (download the presentation).

📌 Download the guide “I Can Export: How to export information and communication technology (ICT) services to Canada” via the link (in Ukrainian).

Practical recommendation to establish successful business relationships with Canadian buyers – webinar

The CUTIS project in partnership with the Canada-Ukraine Chamber of Commerce and the Canada Export Promotion Office (TFO Canada) held a webinar with the participation of Maria Guzman, TFO Canada apparel market expert and CUTIS projects consultant.

The main objective is to provide comprehensive and practical guidance on the requirements for the sale of clothing in Canada and to facilitate the process of finding partners in this market for Ukrainian companies.

The following questions were discussed during the webinar:

  • Features of the Canadian clothing market
  • Recent fashion trends in the market
  • How to interact with potential buyers
  • How to successfully build a business relationship
  • How to present your product successfully
  • How to calculate export prices and negotiate with Bayer
  • How to calculate the cost of logistics
  • Basic requirements for product labelling

Part 1 video 

Part 2 video 

You can download Maria’s presentation via the link.

You can download the webinar Summary via the link.

Rules of origin for apparel and footwear under the CUFTA – video

In order to obtain preferential access to the Canadian market under the Canada-Ukraine Free Trade Agreement (CUFTA), the product must be of Ukrainian origin.

The rules of origin impact on:

  • Import duty rates
  • Tariff quotas
  • Export trade statistics

It is essential to know that a declaration of origin of the goods is the only document Ukrainian producer needs to confirm the origin.

What does this mean for Ukrainian business?

Ukrainian companies don’t have to receive any additional certificates. The origin information shall be indicated on an invoice or any other document containing the description of the goods. Therefore, it means reducing financial and time costs for customs clearance of export products.

You can find out more about rules of origin for Ukrainian apparel and footwear goods under the CUFTA from Olexandra Brovko, CUTIS Senior Expert on Trade and Investment.

To free download the manual – I CAN Export: Rules of origin under the Canada-Ukraine Free Trade Agreement. Guidelines for Exporters (in Ukrainian), please follow the link.

Resource World Magazine highlighted mining in Ukraine

Resource World Magazine – one of the leading media in the business of mining, oil, gas and green technologies with subscribers in 46 countries published the outputs of the Mining in Ukraine conference, organized by CUTIS Project and the Canada-Ukraine Chamber of Commerce (CUCC) within the framework of PDAC Convention on March 2nd, 2020 in Toronto.

The editor Ellsworth Dickson wrote an article about activities of the state-owned Ukrainian exploration company “Nadra Ukrayny”, represented at the conference by the Chairman Taras Kuzmych.

Please read the whole article below:

Ukraine state exploration company seeking partners

By Ellsworth Dickson

In a presentation at the recent Prospectors and Developers of Canada Convention in Toronto, Canada, Taras Kuzmych, Chairman of National Joint Stock Company (NJSC), Nadra Ukrany, outlined the many activities of the state-owned Ukrainian exploration company.

The company carries out geological exploration and invests in projects in the exploration and production sector in the country – mostly oil and gas projects but some mineral projects as well.

Although Nadra Ukrany has been in existence in one form or another for about 80 years, the current state company was formed in 2000 “….to improve minerals supply for country’s needs [and] to reserve and increase geological enterprises’ potential.”

Considering the tumultuous events Ukraine has had to endure during the 20th century, it is remarkable that the NJSC has explored over 1,800 oil fields, discovered over 350 hydrocarbon deposits, drilled over 1,000 wells and added 2.9 billion tons of fuel reserves with the result that both state-owned and private enterprises represent about 95% of hydrocarbons in Ukraine.

The company has noted that these include hundreds of oil and condensate deposits such as: Shebelinske, Yablunivske, Radchenkivske, Sahaydatske, Mihaylivske, Rybalske, Anastasiyivske that have been discovered, tested and put into operation.

Recently, the NJSC has been modernizing its corporate structure and auditing its Joint Activity Agreements. The company is currently offering a selection of blocks, minerals and cooperating frameworks to investors covering the entire country. Bidding by investors is competition based.

For the oil & gas sector, the NJSC is involved in geological exploration, field development and analysis of wells, environmental monitoring and impact analysis R&D, laboratory studies of core, drilling mud and related activities, including engineering and geological research.

Nadra Ukrany has also been involved with exploring and developing various mineral commodities, including the Dashukivske clay deposit, Muzhiyivske gold and polymetallic ore deposit, coal deposits of the Lviv-Volyn coal basin, native sulphur and potassium salt deposits in the Carpathian region of Ukraine, the Dnieper brown coal basin, the Klintsy native gold deposit (the first Ukrainian gold was extracted out of its ore), and even mineral waters as Naftusya, Morshinska, Polyana Kwasova and Shayanska, as well as numerous deposits of decorative and construction brick.

There are several ways foreign investors can participate such as a Production Sharing Agreement (PSA), a Production Enhancement Contract and Joint Activity.

One example that is available is a farm-in PSA opportunity in the Oleska Oil and Gas Project in western Ukraine. This would involve E&P of conventional and unconventional hydrocarbons. Other oil & gas opportunities are also available.

There are also partnership opportunities for mineral development as well, including titanium in the Zhytomyr region, zirconium in the Krasnorichenske ilmenite field and zirconium, vanadium and scandium in the Paromivske ilmenite field. Scandium is a rare and valuable metal capable of increasing the strength of aluminum to that of steel, making the alloy especially useful for aircraft applications.

Blessed with petroleum and mineral wealth, Ukraine is keen on developing its natural resources and is welcoming foreign investors to participate in a variety of projects.

New opportunities for foreign investors in the Ukrainian mining industry were presented in Canada

Prospectors & Developers Association of Canada (PDAC) Convention in Toronto is the world’s annual premier mining industry event, bringing together investors, analysts, mining executives, geologists, students, and government officials.

Attendance at the 88th PDAC 2020 Convention totaled 23,144, highlighting the resilience and innovation of the international mineral exploration and mining sector.

Over 132 countries were present at PDAC, including major mining companies from the United States, Canada, China, Brazil, Australia, India, and South Africa.

For the first time within the PDAC agenda, Canada Ukraine Trade and Investment Support Project (CUTIS) in conjunction with the Canada-Ukraine Chamber of Commerce (CUCC) organized a half-day event called “Mining in Ukraine”. Ukrainian State and private mining representatives, as well as Canadian and American mining companies doing business in Ukraine presented to over 80 potential investors. The speakers shared their knowledge about the Ukraine mining industry and potential opportunities.

Roman Opimakh, who serves as the Head of the State Service for Geology and Subsoil of Ukraine was one of the first Ukrainian government speakers. Opimakh highlighted that Ukraine is on its way of transforming State Service for Geology into the service-oriented agency. The plan is to restore trust in the agency by improving the efficiency of its operations and creating investment opportunities for foreign companies. The agency is currently working towards activating “dormant” licenses and lifting artificial regulatory barriers. To attract investments in the development of the Ukrainian mineral sector, the agency is improving access to the existing geological data and conducting e-auctions and PSA tender for mineral projects.

The next speaker, Matt Simpson, CEO of Canadian company Black Iron Inc., a publicly listed company on the TSX, provided an overview of the company’s Shymanivske Iron Ore Project located in Ukraine’s iron belt 8km from Kryvyi Rih, the city with 750,000 people. The site is 2 km from rail, 30 km from power and will have access to 5 ports – 230 km to 430 km from the site. Matt Simpson said that they will need to invest US$436 million for the construction of the mine and plan to produce 4 million tonnes per year of premium 68% iron ore product. The production is scheduled to begin in late 2022. The Company is working closely with the Government of Ukraine to get all the necessary approvals to begin construction. If the project is successful, Matt Simpson predicts that it will generate US$1.2 billion investment over the next 20 years.

Brian C. Savage, Chairman and CEO of Avellana Gold Ltd. a privately held mineral exploration and development company, provided an overview of its development activities in Ukraine. The company owns licenses for gold-polymetallic deposits located in the western, Transcarpathian region of Ukraine near the border with Romania and Hungary. The three licenses cover over 1,300 hectares of land. The company has completed a 3d resource model and is developing a life of mine plan that targets 1 million tonnes of underground mining. Brian Savage said that it will take another two years to bring the project into the production of gold and zinc.

Chairman of the Board of NJSC “Nadra of Ukraine” Taras Kuzmych presented the opportunities of cooperation with NJSC “Nadra of Ukraine”. In particular, Taras Kuzmych outlined the plans for the transformation of NJSC “Nadra of Ukraine” and on specific proposals for cooperation in the field of development of minerals.  In addition to presenting these potential investment projects, Taras Kuzmych stressed the readiness of NJSC “Nadra Ukrainy”, which has vast experience and local expertise, to assist foreign companies entering Ukraine.

Taras Kuzmych presented a detailed brief on frameworks of cooperation with NJSC “Nadra Ukraine” in the joint development of blocks. In particular, it can be conducted on the basis of Production Sharing Agreements (PSAs), Production Enhancement Contracts (PECs) or Joint Activities Agreements (JAAs).

Stanislav Letyvniuk, Development Director of Kislotoupor Group, which was established in 1996, provided an overview of its mining activities in Ukraine. Kislotoupor has been operating in Ukraine for the last 24 years producing and supplying clay, gypsum, and other raw materials for glass production. The Company has completed 7 successful projects in the mining industry 4 of which where greenfield. The production has been exported to more than 10 countries, including countries in Europe, Asia, and the CIS countries. The Company has started a collaboration with customers in North America. In addition, the Company offers consulting services in the areas of deposit analysis, from exploration to the preparation of a business plan and project support.

CUCC’s plan is to hold a similar event next year at PDAC 2021.

All speakers presentations are available on the CUTIS Trade & Investment Portal

Target commodities and services for export promotion to Canada within the Export Strategy of Ukraine

The Ministry of Economic Development, Trade and Agriculture of Ukraine in partnership with the Canada-Ukraine Trade and Investment Support Project (CUTIS) and the National Institute for Strategic Studies presented a report “Target commodities and services for export promotion to Canada within the Export Strategy of Ukraine” on March 5.

The research was conducted by the experts of the Ministry of Economic Development, Trade and Agriculture of Ukraine, the SE “Ukrainian Industry Expertise”, Export Promotion Office (EPO), and supported by the CUTIS project.

The study was divided into two parts. The first one is focused on the selection of most promising commodities and services of Ukrainian exports to Canada within the framework of Ukraine’s Export Strategy.

356 commodities (food and machinery industries) were analyzed, resulting in the selection of 18 target groups.

Besides, the following target services for export promotion from Ukraine to Canada were analyzed: ICT (Computer services) and Creative industries (R&D, Professional and management consulting services, Technical, trade-related, and other business services, Audiovisual and related services, Other personal, cultural, and recreational services).

In the second part, comparative analysis and rating of target commodities and services were carried out.

As a result of the study, the following priorities for export promotion were selected:

Food Industry:

  • Fruits and nuts, frozen;
  • Tomatoes prepared or preserved;
  • Sugar Confectionery;
  • Vegetables, fruit, nuts, prepared or preserved;
  • Chocolate.

Machinery:

  • Articles of Carbon or Graphite Used For Electrical Purposes;
  • Non-Electric Radiators, Air Heaters;
  • Electric Domestic Heating Apparatus;
  • Household or laundry-type washing machines.

Services:

  • Computer services;
  • Technical, trade-related, and other business services;
  • Professional and management consulting services.

As Sergii Kovalov, Deputy Director of the Department of Export Development, Ministry of Economic Development and Trade of Ukraine mentioned, the next steps are development and approval of the Strategic Plan of export promotion to Canada. The ministry also plans to apply this methodology to select export promotion priorities and develop strategic plans for other markets in focus.

EPO is ready to use research results for preparing trade missions to Canada and provide consultations to Ukrainian businesses interested in exporting to Canada.

SheChampion: Vinnytsia and Khmelnytsky women entrepreneurs studied successful export experience to foreign markets

The CUTIS project in cooperation with regional chambers of commerce and industry launched a series of #SheChampion seminars. The main goal is to discuss barriers women entrepreneurs face in business and international trade, as well as share experience in entering foreign markets.

On February 19, in cooperation with the Khmelnytsky Chamber of Commerce and Industry, the first #SheChampion seminar was held in Khmelnytsky, bringing together 30 participants.

Women entrepreneurs discussed gender issues in international trade, new trends in the Canadian markets and shared success stories of finding new partners in foreign markets.

Vira Porovska, CUTIS gender equality expert, made a presentation related to the main barriers for women’s SMEs in exporting (according to GBA report). She also conducted a master class ‘How to find the right people to your business’. The participants learned how to determine what competencies a specialist should possess and how to conduct a professional interview in the absence of a qualified HR.

Maryana Ovcharuk (handcrafted soap “Soap Stories”) and Galina Mikhnyak (CASCAD-HOLOD, furniture and logistics services) explained the complexity of entering new markets based on their own experiences. Besides, they focused on barriers and provided practical advice on how to overcome the challenges.

On February 20, the third #SheChampion seminar was held in Vinnytsia in cooperation with the Vinnytsia Chamber of Commerce and Industry. About 36 women entrepreneurs participated in the event.

During the seminar, the participants learned about gender issues in international trade, and perspective sectors for Ukrainian small and medium enterprises in the Canadian market.

In particular, Vira Porovska CUTIS gender equality expert shared the main achievements of the SHEforSHE mentorship program for women entrepreneurs.

Maria Terekhova, managing partner of the New Fashion Zone platform and one of the mentors of the SHEforSHE program, spoke about the changes introduced by the participants (manufacturers of children’s clothing) as a part of the preparation for the Apparel Sourcing Paris exhibition. Maria also shared her impressions of negotiation with foreign buyers in Paris and explained the basic requirements of foreign distributors to Ukrainian clothing and textiles. Participants also discussed the specifics of the Canadian apparel market and change Ukrainian producers need to adapt.

Besides, trainer Kateryna Voylova provided expertise and professional advice concerning promoting hand-made products on the ETSY platform. During the presentation, issues such as product placement, pricing, and paying difficulties were raised.

In the end, Vira Porovska held a master class to increase staff motivation.

Similar events are planned in other regions of Ukraine. The next seminar will be in Dnipro on March 3. So keep an eye on the updates.

How to export furniture to Canada: market trends and consumer preferences

The Canada-Ukraine Trade and Investment Support Project (CUTIS), the Canada-Ukraine Chamber of Commerce (CUCC), as a part of the partnership with the Ukrainian Furniture Association participated in the Smart Export 3.0 conference.

The event brought together about 70 furniture industry representatives who are interested in export development.

Ihor Sanzharovskyi, Director of the CUTIS project in Ukraine, briefly explained how the project supports Ukrainian small and medium-sized businesses (SMEs) in developing export to the Canadian market and focused on the information materials prepared by the project. He also presented a new guide “How to export furniture to Canada”.

You can download the furniture export guide here (in Ukrainian).

Maxim Boroda, CUTIS Senior Trade and Investment Analysis Expert, told about specifics, trends, and consumer preferences in the Canadian furniture market. It’s an interesting fact that the total volume of furniture sales in the Canadian market in 2018 amounted to CAD 38.3 billion, in particular, home furniture (CAD 31.3 billion), home textiles (CAD 1.4 billion) and outdoor furniture (CAD 1.1 billion). It is expected that by 2023 the total volume of furniture sales will reach CAD 46.6 billion. Download the presentation (in Ukrainian).

Oleksandra Brovko, CUTIS Senior Expert on Investment and Trade Policy, clarified regulatory requirements and voluntary certification for Ukrainian furniture in Canada. Download the presentation (in Ukrainian).

Please note that under the Canada-Ukraine Free Trade Agreement (CUFTA), Ukrainian products are not subject to import duties. For example, for Chinese furniture, the duty rates are 8-10%.

Vira Porovska, CUTIS Gender Equality Expert, illustrated why gender-sensitive marketing is an essential requirement of Canadian consumers. Download the presentation (in Ukrainian).

Olga Shtepa, CUTIS Project Coordinator, drew the attention of the event participants to the specifics of the Canadian business culture. In particular, Olga Shtepa named 5 essential components for successful exports to Canada:

  • Website in English (native English)
  • Detailed costs and prices information
  • Farewell to stereotypes
  • Getting rid of misconceptions about your product or service
  • Professional presentation of own products

Download the presentation (in Ukrainian).

Thanks to the support of the CUTIS project 10 Ukrainian furniture companies participated at Canadian Furniture Show 2018: Cube44 (living room and office furniture), ADK (living room and bedroom furniture), Aqua Rodos (bathroom furniture), Merx (kitchen, living room and bedroom furniture), Instyle (kitchen furniture), Stalkon (outdoor furniture), Blest (living room and bedroom furniture), Snite (children’s furniture), Kulik System (office furniture) and Renaissance (children’s furniture) companies was exhibited.

You can read the Blest company success story in the Canadian market here.

The success story of Cube44 furniture company can be found here.