The grain war is in full swing – Poland won’t open borders for Ukraine’s agriculture

Mateusz Morawiecki
Mateusz Morawiecki
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Poland does not intend to open its borders for Ukraine’s agriculture products, Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki announced on July 19.

“We protect our agriculture, that’s why we don’t open borders for agricultural goods from Ukraine,” Morawiecki said.

Read also: Poland foils Russian plot to attack Ukrainian aid trains

“The war in Ukraine is having an increasingly serious impact on the agricultural market, and this is having a negative impact on Poles, which is why we have imposed an embargo on goods from Ukraine.”

He admitted that “in a couple of months, the EU intends to reopen the borders for the import of grain from Ukraine.”

“We do not agree to this, we will not open the borders, and we will not allow the destabilization of our economy. We are obliged to protect Polish interests and our agriculture,” the Polish prime minister said.

Read also: Ukraine proposes to continue Black Sea Grain Initiative without Russia – PM

An agreement was reached and a petition was signed at a meeting of agricultural ministers to extend the ban on the import of four grains from Ukraine until the end of 2023, Polish Agricultrual Minister, Robert Telush, announced.

“Restriction of grain imports from Ukraine did not affect transit. In February, corn transit amounted to 114,000 tons, and in June, 260,000. Therefore, the European Commission’s decision to open the borders on September 15 is not substantively justified,” he said.

Telush said that the Ukrainian and Moldovan agriculture ministers were invited to the meeting in Poland but could not attend. He expressed hope for a meeting with the two counterparts soon.

Read also: Russia attacks grain terminals in Odesa, Chornomorsk seaports overnight – photos

“We want to help Ukraine with transit. We know this war is a war we have to win,” he said, adding that it will be won when “solutions are put in place to help us do this.”

Ukraine remains categorically against the continuation of the EU’s discriminatory ban on the supply of several of Ukraine’s agricultural products to Poland, Hungary, Slovakia, Bulgaria, and Romania after September 15, Ukraine’s Economy Minister and Deputy PM, Yuliya Svyridenko, told a European Business Association meeting on July 19.

Answering the question of what Ukraine’s response will be should the ban be extended, she said that Ukraine would be forced to consider tit-for-tat measures.

“I would not like to speak out loud and think that this is a realistic step, but we think that some mirror measures can be applied,” she said.

The issue of Ukraine’s grain exports has taken on increased importance recently after Russia unilaterally withdrew from the Black Sea Grain Initiative, threatening to massively disrupt the world’s food security and potentially cause famine in several nations.

Read also: Ukraine, US to work on ensuring grain exports to Africa, Asia, says FM Kuleba

After Russia withdrew from the deal, the aggressor country targeted Ukraine’s grain transport facilities in Odesa Oblast in a further attempt to disrupt the markets. Three ports in the Odesa region were used to ship Ukrainian grain under the Black Sea Grain Initiative.

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Read the original article on The New Voice of Ukraine