NSDC slaps sanctions on “top 10 smugglers” – Zelensky
Dozens of customs officials have been sacked.Photo from UNIAN
The National Security and Defense Council of Ukraine at its meeting on Friday, April 2, applied personal sanctions to the country’s “top ten smugglers,” Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky says.
“This [smuggling] is economic terrorism against Ukraine. According to experts, smuggling-related losses reach UAH 300 billion, of which the state budget of Ukraine fell short, of which more than UAH 100 billion is due to ineffective customs work. Today, for the first time in Ukraine’s history, personal sanctions have been introduced. In particular, assets and property were blocked of those who NSDC and SBU’s analytical data says can be referred to as Ukraine’s top ten smugglers,” Zelensky said in his address to the nation.
According to the Ukrainian leader, the National Security and Defense Council (NSDC) will continue to apply sanctions to those engaged in smuggling.
“Today it was the top ten, but definitely not the last one,” the president said.
Zelensky also noted that at the meeting, the NSDC dismissed dozens of customs officials. Also, amendments to legislation are being drafted to penalize the filing of false data in customs declarations.
Experts with the Ukrainian Institute for the Future say the annual volume of smuggling in Ukraine is estimated at about $12 billion. In this regard, state policy should be aimed at developing border trade and stimulating the withdrawal of smuggling flows from the shadows.