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Processing of empty trucks begins at Poland-Ukraine border checkpoint

by Martin Fornusek and The Kyiv Independent news desk December 4, 2023 10:48 AM 2 min read
Trucks lining up at the Uhryniv-Dolhobychuv checkpoint on the Polish-Ukrainian border on Dec. 4, 2023. (State Border Guard Service)
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Customs services began processing empty trucks departing from Ukraine to Poland at the Uhryniv-Dolhobychuv checkpoint in accordance with an agreement between Kyiv and Warsaw, Ukraine's State Border Guard service announced on Dec. 4.

The registration began at 1 a.m. Kyiv time. Some 30 cargo vehicles with a weight over 7.5 metric tons have been processed as of 7 a.m., the Border Guard said.

Polish truckers started blocking the movement of trucks at three border crossing points on Nov. 6 in protest of the liberalization of EU transport rules for Ukrainian trucks. Four checkpoints have been blocked so far, resulting in huge lines on both sides.

Following a Dec. 1 meeting between Polish and Ukrainian representatives, the two parties agreed to open a crossing point for empty trucks at the Uhryniv-Dolhobychuv checkpoint.

"The opening of Uhryniv is the first item on the list of measures implemented to unblock the border, reduce lines, and increase the capacity of the Ukrainian-Polish border," the Border Guard said in its statement.

Other steps agreed on between Warsaw and Kyiv included creating separate electronic passes for empty vehicles at the Yahodyn-Dorohusk and Krakivets-Korczowa crossing points and launching a pilot electronic queueing system.

"This will make it possible to lift the blockade as soon as possible and establish uninterrupted traffic across the border," the Border Guard's statement read.

Ukraine's Ambassador to Poland Vasyl Zvarych said earlier on Dec. 4 that some compromises have been reached between the Polish and Ukrainian governments regarding the blockade.

"And we really hope that these proposals, which we worked out together with the Polish government, will be enough for the protesters to stop the protest," Zvarych said.

Trucker protests: Unraveling the standoff between Polish and Ukrainian haulers
As Polish protests blocking three major Poland-Ukraine border crossings stretch into their third week, negotiations to bring an end to the blockade have all but failed. Exhausted drivers are stuck in massive lines on both sides of the border, with expected waiting times reaching over one month at t…
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