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Polish official: Poland to ask EU to extend Ukrainian grain ban

by Martin Fornusek September 12, 2023 10:19 AM 2 min read
A pile of maize grains is seen on the pier at the Izmail Sea Port, Odesa Oblast, on July 22, 2023. (Photo credit: STRINGER / AFP via Getty Images)
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The Polish government plans to appeal to the European Commission today on Sept. 12 to extend the import ban on Ukrainian grain products in five EU countries, the government's spokesperson Piotr Müller told Polsat News.

Müller added that Warsaw will introduce restrictions on the national level if the Commission does not agree to prolong the measure.

Poland, Slovakia, Hungary, Romania, and Bulgaria requested the European Commission to ban the domestic sale of certain Ukrainian grain products in these countries. The measure was instituted in May and is currently set to expire on Sep. 15.

The five countries were reacting to the pressure from their farmers, who feared that cheaper Ukrainian imports would threaten domestic production. The influx of grain from Ukraine also created logistical bottlenecks.

Ukraine, one of the world's leading grain producers, is seeking alternative export routes after Russia's unilateral withdrawal from the Black Sea Grain Initiative on July 17.

Kyiv appealed to the EU not to prolong the ban, saying it would be "unacceptable" to continue the restriction past Sept. 15. However, all five countries said they would appeal to the Commission for an extension.

This measure did not restrict the transit of Ukrainian produce through the territories of the said states. Romania, Poland, and Bulgaria even introduced or discussed measures to expand their transit capacity of Ukrainian grain.

Polish PM: Poland will ‘not open border’ to Ukrainian grain if EU ban not extended
Poland will not open its borders to Ukrainian grain imports unless the EU ban is not extended beyond Sep. 15, Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki said on July 19.
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