Seed equivalence - Ukraine

EESC opinion: Seed equivalence - Ukraine

Key points

  • The EESC notes that certain standards are not fully aligned with EU requirements, particularly those relating to the isolation distance for certified seed for sorghum, which are lower, the varietal purity of parental lines used for the production of seeds for hybrids of maize, and the content of seeds of other species for certified seed for maize.
  • The EESC agrees with the legislative proposal under examination, subject, however to first obtaining the necessary guarantees showing that the limitations indicated in the audit report have been remedied, that production standards in Ukraine now comply strictly with European requirements and that an absence of unfair competition can be guaranteed.
  • Ukrainian producers have access to certain substances that are banned in the European Union. These divergences lead to a distortion of competition and would result in products which do not comply with EU health and environmental standards being able to enter the territory of the European Union.
  • The most significant differences include access to active weed control substances such as atrazine (banned in the EU since 2003) or acetochlor (banned in the EU since 2012).
  • With regard to pest protection, Ukrainian producers still have access to active substances in the neonicotinoid family, some of which are banned in the EU, such as clothianidin, thiamethoxam or very soon thiacloprid.