Poland urges EU to extend ban on Ukrainian grain

The Polish prime minister has said he has sent a letter to the European Union’s executive Commission, demanding an extension of the embargo on Ukrainian grain beyond September 15.

Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki meets reporters in the central town of Kosowo Lackie on Tuesday, September 12, 2023..

Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki meets reporters in the central town of Kosowo Lackie on Tuesday, September 12, 2023..PAP/Marcin Obara

Mateusz Morawiecki announced the move at a meeting with local entrepreneurs and farmers in the central town of Kosowo Lackie on Tuesday, Polish state news agency PAP reported.

The prime minister said: “In the face of the challenges posed by the Ukrainian market, we seek to secure arrangements that will be good for Polish farmers. Above all we must ensure the production security of Polish farmers.”

Morawiecki added: “And so I have sent an ultimatum to the European Commission. Either the EC will extend the ban on the import of four Ukrainian grains on September 15, or Poland will extend the ban of its own accord.”

He stressed that the government was determined “to prevent the destabilisation of the Polish market.”

Earlier in the day, the Council of Ministers adopted a resolution on taking steps  designed to “extend preventive measures against the import of selected products from Ukraine,” according to officials. 

In the resolution, the Polish government called on the European Commission “to prolong, beyond September 15, the embargo on the import of four agricultural products from Ukraine: wheat, corn, rapeseed and sunflower;” and to “take immediate action to develop policies to ensure  stable and efficient functioning of local producers in Poland and the EU,” the PAP news agency reported.

The Polish government stressed that if the European Commission didn’t extend the ban on Ukrainian grain beyond September 15, “Poland will introduce an embargo at the national level” until “the relations between Poland and Ukraine over agricultural issues are settled,” according to officials.

The cabinet further said: “The government will not allow Ukrainian grain to destabilise the national farming market. We are helping our neighbour, but we must protect Polish farmers.”

The EU’s executive Commission in May introduced a ban on the import of wheat, corn, rapeseed, sunflower and sunflower oil from Ukraine to Poland, Bulgaria, Hungary, Romania and Slovakia, based on an agreement with these five countries, the PAP news agency reported.

The embargo was initially effective until June 5, and later extended until this Friday, September 15. 

Meanwhile, the transit of Ukrainian grain through the five countries “near the frontline” remains allowed.

In July, Poland’s Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki said that his country would not open its borders to Ukrainian grain when the European Union ban expires on September 15.

Agriculture Minister Robert Telus said at the time that Ukraine’s five EU neighbours wanted the embargo prolonged at least until the end of the year, the PAP news agency reported. 

Russia invaded Ukraine on February 24, 2022, launching the largest military campaign in Europe since World War II.

(pm)

Source: PAPgazetaprawna.plgov.pl

Radio Poland

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