The Ukrainian government initiates changes in licensing fuel storage for farmers

Ukraine initiates changes regarding fuel licensing for farmers.

This is reported by the minister of Agrarian Policy and food Roman Leshchenko on his Facebook page.

According to the official, at the end of 2019, the Verkhovna Rada adopted amendments to the law of Ukraine “on state regulation of the production and turnover of ethyl, cognac and fruit alcohol, alcoholic beverages, tobacco products, liquids used in electronic cigarettes and fuel”. The purpose of the relevant legislative changes was to introduce effective tools to combat illegal fuel trafficking within the country. The volume of the shadow market at that time, according to various estimates, was billions of hryvnias annually.

As noted, farmers, as one of the main buyers of fuel, were also included in this control system. In particular, the law provided for the obligation of agricultural producers to obtain a license for storing fuel for their own consumption by March 1, 2020. The procedure for issuing such a license has been significantly simplified and provides only for submitting an application for a license indicating the volume of tanks used for fuel storage and their location.

Unfortunately, for various objective reasons, including technical ones, as well as weak communication between the state and business, a significant number of farmers did not have time to obtain licenses before March 1, 2020, but received them later. The prevalence of this fact was revealed by the inspection bodies, having started inspections of business entities regarding compliance with the legislation on regulating fuel turnover.

Roman Leshchenko-Minister of Agrarian Policy and food of Ukraine.

Roman Leshchenko noted that if according to the primary documents, the tax authorities see that on March 1, 2020, the farmer bought fuel, but there was no storage license, they interpret this as storing fuel without a license, regardless of whether the farmer has a license at the time of verification or not. The law provides for high liability — a fine of 500 thousand UAH for storing fuel without a license, or selling fuel if you have a license only for storing fuel for your own needs.

Farmers also submit numerous complaints about other difficulties and significant bureaucracy that they face when passing appropriate inspections, as well as the need to provide a large number of documents to requests from tax authorities.

The minister notes that this situation does not contribute to the development of the agro-industrial complex. That is why he urgently initiates the creation of a working group with the involvement of farmers and representatives of the Ministry of Finance and the state tax service to quickly solve the problem and find a compromise way out of the crisis situation that has occurred in the field of state control over fuel turnover.

I will also personally insist that all farmers who received licenses at the time of the audit should be canceled fines for late receipt of them. In addition, I consider it necessary to establish standards for fuel consumption per hectare, in compliance with which documentary inspections should be canceled altogether.

Roman Leshchenko-Minister of Agrarian Policy and food of Ukraine.