Saturday, September 23, 2023

EU Agriculture Commissioner calls for an extension of the grain import ban

The EU agriculture commissioner said on Tuesday he believes the European Commission should extend a temporary ban on Ukrainian imports to five neighboring states as the move helped boost exports outside the bloc.

Ukraine is entirely reliant on the European Union’s alternative so-called “solidarity routes” for its grain exports after Russia abandoned in July a year-old agreement that had allowed grain to be transported safely through its Black Sea ports.

As a result, farmers in neighboring Poland, Hungary, Romania, Bulgaria, and Slovakia faced increasing competition and shortages in their own markets.

The European Commission announced in May “temporary preventive measures” that would ban sales to these five states while allowing transit to non-EU markets, particularly Africa.

“The preventive measures were effective, efficient, stabilized the markets of the five Member States, and also contributed to increasing exports via the ‘solidarity routes’,” Agriculture Commissioner Janusz Wojciechowski told the European Parliament.

“That is the main argument for extending the preventive measures, which I fully support.”

The Commission also allocated 156 million euros ($167.29 million) to compensate affected EU farmers and raised nearly 1.9 billion euros ($2.04 billion) to improve alternative routes.

The five countries have pushed to extend the ban beyond its expiration on Friday, and Poland has repeatedly said it will unilaterally maintain the ban if the commission does not extend it.

World Nation News Desk
World Nation News Desk
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