Why Ukraine suspected of selling scrap metal to unrecognized Transnistria

Author : Igor Smolov

Source : 112 Ukraine

Media publish information that some Ukrainian commercial companies continue to send scrap metal to the territory of internationally unrecognized Transnistria
17:55, 4 October 2018

Recently, the media have published information about some Ukrainian commercial companies, which, despite the sanctions of Ukraine’s National Security and Defense Council, continue to send scrap metal to the territory of Transnistria In addition, the authors of the original articles argue that such export operations create a shortage of raw materials, and also pose a serious threat to the national security of Ukraine. Moreover, the emphasis is on enterprises that are among the largest scrap metal producers in Ukraine.

Unfortunately, today there is a confrontation between metallurgists and scrap collectors, and metallurgists, as unconditional monopolists of this market, try to discredit their partners - scrap distributors with various methods in order to redirect their activity from external, more economically efficient markets, to own needs at unreasonably low and economically unprofitable prices for scrap collectors.

Related: Ukrainian scrap metal supplied to Transnistria in violation of sanctions

We conducted an additional journalistic investigation, and also listened to the head of the press service of the UkrMet Company, who proved that, in fact, the Mateutsi station is not located on the territory of the unrecognized Transnistrian Republic, but on the territory of the Republic of Moldova. The scrap metal buyer, who books the delivery, is a legal entity registered on the territory of the Republic of Moldova and is a major trader of scrap metal. All this undoubtedly indicates that the UkrMet, UkrTrans, and Ukrzaliznytsia companies, mentioned in these publications, did not violate the sanctions restrictions on the supply of scrap metal to the territory of the self-proclaimed republic, established by the current legislation. Moreover, the export of scrap metal occurred on the territory of Moldova, a state friendly to Ukraine.

Related: EU summons Ukrainian Parliament to remove export duties on metal scrap

It turns out that talks about Ukrainian suppliers’ sanctions-busting are just trade barriers in the intensification of the market competition. Is this mistake made due to ignorance, or intentional misinformation?

Related: Ukrainian scrap metal shipped to unrecognized Transnistria – union chairman

Or maybe it is a coincidence? It is strange that "A military unit commander of 39th Sotnia of Self-Defense of Maidan, Consultant of the Committee on National Security and Defense of the Verkhovna Rada" did it out of ignorance. Is it misinformation? Why the fact that the exporting company paid a state fee of 42 euros for each ton of scrap metal for the benefit of the budget of Ukraine is ignored? Is it really beneficial for a Moldovan purchasing company to purchase this raw material at a price with regard to the state duty?

Related: Illegal scrap metal diggers arrested in Kropyvnytsky, central Ukraine

It is not a secret that Ukraine and Moldova are friendly states, for the first half of 2018; a trade turnover amounted to $ 499.1 million. For example, Ukraine is a large exporter of food products to Moldova (chicken, dairy products, wood, etc.) and to other EU countries. Why scrap metal is worse than chicken legs, dairy products or cigarettes? Why the silent export of these products to Moldova lasts for years? And the export of 1,447 tons and the intention to export 6,210 tons of scrap metal in September of this year suddenly caused such an aggressive and inadequate reaction in the mass media? Why and for whom is it profitable to drive a wedge between Ukrainian scrap suppliers and the Moldovan metallurgical business?

Related: Heavy metals schemes: Scrap metal business of Donbas militants

It is obvious that political engagement seriously affects the interests of Ukrainian scrap metal. Perhaps someone pays for it because personal super-profits are at stake, not the development of the country's economy. These details should be put into the account.

Who and why puts relations of the metallurgical lobby of Ukraine above the interests of friendly Ukrainian and Moldavian businesses, for whom driving a wedge between the government of Ukraine and the Moldovan parliament is beneficial?

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This column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of the editorial board or 112.International and its owners.

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