June 2016 - On 16 June 2016, the National Bank of Ukraine (NBU) adopted a resolution (No. 347, amending NBU resolution No. 136) that is expected to streamline the foreign trade procedures between banks, importers/exporters and state authorities.

Under Ukrainian currency control rules, banks in Ukraine are required to supervise the export and import contracts of Ukrainian residents to ensure that payments under export contracts and deliveries under import contracts occur by the established deadlines, currently 90 days.

Under the new NBU resolution, within the context of foreign trade, the supervision of Ukrainian banks should now be limited to:

  • export transactions by Ukrainian residents, where the customs clearance of the goods precedes the payment of their price;
  • import transactions by Ukrainian residents, where payment for goods, works, services or intellectual property (IP) rights is made in advance of the customs clearance of the goods, the discharge of the works or services, or the granting of IP rights to Ukrainian residents in full; and
  • import transactions by Ukrainian residents that do not envisage arrival of goods into the territory of Ukraine if such transactions are not completed before payment is made.

This change alone should significantly reduce paperwork for Ukrainian companies and banks involved in import/export transactions that do not fall into the above categories.

In addition, the NBU now allows banks to accept an invoice as a document confirming, in particular, the provision of services and the discharge of works, as opposed to the previously required acceptance certificate signed by both parties. In practice, this means that Ukrainian importers of services, works, and IP licenses will no longer need to chase their foreign counterparties for a signed hardcopy of an acceptance certificate and risk breaching Ukrainian currency control regulations in cases where the certificate was not obtained in time.

Furthermore, under the amended NBU foreign trade rules, where export/import transactions are carried out based on electronic contracts in accordance with Ukraine’s e-commerce legislation, banks may accept for supervision purposes the documents in electronic form as well as hardcopy print outs.

These recent developments are in line with the NBU’s de-bureaucratization strategy and are expected to facilitate export and import transactions with Ukrainian counterparties.