Turkey cites fake docs fears as it reimposes Ukraine phyto requirements

Turkish authorities have given notice that they will re-impose all documentation and certification requirements for imports from Ukraine with effect from September 1, multiple sources have told Agricensus on Monday.

In a document distributed among the trade, and dated August 17, the food and control directorate of the ministry of agriculture and forestry appears to have cited the presence of fake documents in Black Sea ship movements as the driver for the decision.

“For this reason, when the issues of preventing counterfeiting in the certificates of the products to be imported… the products should come with the Phytosanitary Certificate/Health Certificate as per our legislation,” the document says.

Trade sources emphasised this was a revert to normal trading requirements – and came amid reports that Russia had been exporting Ukrainian grown product seized from occupied lands.

“(You) can’t custom clear imports without the original phyto in Turkey. Since March 3, buyers are able to import the cargo without the original phyto, but now it’s back to basics,” one trade sources said.

“You must have the original phyto at discharge, otherwise the vessel will wait… Now we are back to this,” a second trade source said.

Turkey suspended the documentation requirement back on March 3, just days after Russian forces began their invasion of Ukraine.

The fighting led to a huge drop in Ukraine’s export capacity as Russian forces blockaded the country’s deep water ports and seized the shallow water ports of the Azov Sea.

However, a month ago the UN and Turkey were able to broker an agreement between Russia and Ukaine to reopen exports from Chornomorsk, Odesa, and Pivdennyi - Ukraine’s key deep water ports capable of handling much bigger corn, wheat and oilseed volumes.