Poland backtracks on Ukrainian agriculture transit ban

19 April, 06:03 PM
Several countries temporarily banned the import of Ukrainian grain (Photo:REUTERS/Dado Ruvic)

Several countries temporarily banned the import of Ukrainian grain (Photo:REUTERS/Dado Ruvic)

Ukraine and Poland have reached an agreement on restarting transit of Ukrainian grain, Ukraine’s Ministry of Agrarian Policy and Food reported on April 18.

The transit will restart overnight on April 21.

Additional control measures will be applied to transit shipments and will be publicly announced to suppliers shortly, the agency said.

Ukraine understands the situation among Polish farmers, but Poland is also aware of the situation Ukrainian famers face during wartime, said First Deputy Prime Minister and Economy Minister Yulia Svyrydenko, who is on an official visit to Warsaw.

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“Since the beginning of the war, Poland has provided extensive support to Ukraine,” she said.

“Together with our Polish counterparts, we’re solving all problems as partners. And that’s why we must respond promptly and constructively to this crisis situation,” said Svyrydenko.

“The Polish side notified us about the technical aspects of transporting Ukrainian products through Polish territory. We’re confident that Ukrainian exporters will take a responsible approach to those requirements.”

Poland has no issue with Ukrainian agricultural products transiting the country, so long as there are “100% guarantees” that the products would not remain in the country, said Polish Agriculture Minister Robert Telus.

After two days of talks in Warsaw, both sides “managed to create such mechanisms that will ensure that not a single ton of grain will remain in Poland,” he told Reuters.

Poland banned grain imports from Ukraine on April 15, caving to the demands of Polish farmers who had protested Ukrainian agriculture shipments for months.

They claim that a significant part of Ukrainian grain does not transit further, remaining in Poland to flood the market and depress the prices.

Later, Hungary, Slovakia, and Bulgaria announced similar temporary bans on Ukrainian agriculture products.

The European Commission denounced the bans as unacceptable, saying the likely break both EU and international laws.

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