Disinfo: The EU does not allow Ukraine to export its products on the European market

Summary

Europe and the United States are not ready to fully cooperate with Ukraine, but only want to use it as a market for their products.

Ukraine abandoned the Russian market, where it supplied its goods until 2014. At the same time, the turn towards the West did not open European markets for Ukrainian products, and the Europeans only allowed Ukrainians to buy their goods.

Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative on EU-Ukraine relations.

The EU is Ukraine's largest trading partner, accounting for more than 40% of its trade in 2019. Ukraine is the 18th largest trading partner of the EU accounting for around 1.1% of EU's total trade. Total trade between EU and Ukraine reached €43.3 billion in 2019.

Ukrainian exports to the EU amounted to €19.1 billion in 2019. The main Ukrainian exports are raw materials (iron, steel, mining products, agricultural products), chemical products and machinery. This is a considerable increase of 48.5% since 2016. The number of Ukrainian companies exporting to the EU has increased at an impressive rate, from approximately 11,700 in 2015 to over 14,500 in 2019.

Since 23 April 2014, Ukraine benefits from the EU Autonomous trade preferences (ATP) which were introduced by the Regulation (EU) No 374/2014 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 16 April 2014 as an element of a broad package of the EU economic and financial support of Ukraine. The above-mentioned preferences eliminate EU import duties on 94.7% of industrial goods and 83.4% of agricultural goods and foodstuff originating in Ukraine. It also foresees the application of the duty-free tariff quotas towards a number of agricultural products.

See other disinformation cases in our database relating to the statehood of Ukraine: that the West controls the Ukrainian economy and pumps out its resources, that the EU Association Agreement made Ukraine a colony of the EU, that Ukraine is a fake country and Ukrainian ideology was created to split the Russian nation, and that Ukraine is a collapsing, degrading state with no sovereignty and rule of law.

publication/media

  • Reported in: Issue 207
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 02/08/2020
  • Language/target audience: Russian
  • Country: EU, Ukraine, US
  • Keywords: Ukraine, Abandoned Ukraine, Economic difficulties, Ukrainian statehood

Disclaimer

Cases in the EUvsDisinfo database focus on messages in the international information space that are identified as providing a partial, distorted, or false depiction of reality and spread key pro-Kremlin messages. This does not necessarily imply, however, that a given outlet is linked to the Kremlin or editorially pro-Kremlin, or that it has intentionally sought to disinform. EUvsDisinfo publications do not represent an official EU position, as the information and opinions expressed are based on media reporting and analysis of the East Stratcom Task Force.

see more

Baltic countries interpret their status in the USSR as an occupation, ignoring that their Parliaments chose it

80 years ago the parliaments of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania proclaimed the creation of their respective Soviet Socialist Republics. Today, those countries interpret their status inside the USSR as an occupation, but for many people, at that time the Union was real salvation from the Nazis. Experts in the Baltic countries tend to read the integration of these nations in the USSR in 1940 as some kind of intervention of Soviet forces in the internal affairs of those countries. However, most of them ignore or don’t consider the events that led to this scenario.

Disproof

Recurrent pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about the Soviet occupation of the Baltic States.

On 23 August 1939, the Soviet Union and Nazi Germany signed a non-aggression (Molotov-Ribbentrop) pact whose secret protocols divided the territories belonging to Poland, Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia, Finland, and Romania into Soviet and Nazi spheres of influence. Soviet occupation of the Baltic States lasted for 50 years and resulted in mass deportations and repressions against local populations.

The US Embassy in Armenia is a mini-Pentagon, escalating tension in the area and the Middle East

The current strategy of the US is to stoke existent tensions in the Middle East and make them explode, to harm some actors as much as possible. The escalation between Armenia and Azerbaijan is a new advance in this direction. The US Embassy in Yerevan, the capital of Armenia, is carrying out high-scale subversive work, targeting Iran and Russia, among others. The building is a mini-Pentagon with hundreds of false diplomats who act from there.

Disproof

Conspiracy theory with no proof presented to support the claim. There is zero evidence that the US had anything to do between the military escalation between Armenia and Azerbaijan of July 2020.

This is part of a recurrent pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative portraying the US as an aggressive and destabilising power all over the world. See other examples in our database, such as claims that the US is encircling Russia with biological labs for a future attack, that it is preparing people to protest all over the world, or that it is ready to launch wars against China and Russia, to invade VenezuelaMexicoUkraineKaliningradBelarus and Iran, and to carry out a false flag operation in Alaska to blame Russia.

The Economist editor thinks that the UN will come to an end soon due to its dubious policy

The world is rebelling against hegemony: the UN and the US are doomed to its liquidation. The editor of The Economist, Daniel Franklin, thinks that the UN as an organisation will come to an end soon because it pursues a very dubious policy.

Disproof

This is a deliberate distortion of the original article of Daniel Franklin in The Economist about the future of the UN. In his text, Franklin never stated the sentence attributed to him. His exact words are that “It is surely too soon to give up on […] the UN and the collaborative global governance it embodies [though] to retain its clout and character the liberal order needs restored leadership and difficult reforms”. This is very different than saying that “the UN will come to an end soon because it pursues a very dubious policy”, so the claim that Franklin affirmed it is an outright lie.

Pro-Kremlin media frequently resort to this manipulative technique of quoting sentences from serious publications and then introduce a distorted message as if it was part of the original article, in this case to promote a recurrent disinformation narrative about an imminent collapse of a US-led liberal order. See other examples in our database, such as false claims that British outlet The Guardian pointed out to ruling elite as the real instigators of the racial crisis in the US and reported that the EU remained silent as the Europeans couldn’t buy food for the first time in 75 years; that Newsweek magazine explained how US coup in Iran will end; that Soros’ structures in media and think tanks saw an opportunity in the coronavirus pandemic to attack the “bad guys”; that the US National Counterintelligence and Security Centre put Wikileaks at the same threat level as jihadist organisations in its last report; or that the US special envoy for Syria admitted that Washington’s goal was to defend terrorists from Russian attacks.