Polish border blockade shows systemic crisis — UA Economy Ministry

Polish border blockade shows  systemic crisis
Polish border blockade shows systemic crisis

Blocking the Ukrainian border by Polish farmers is not a government action but a systemic crisis in Poland, Ukraine’s Deputy Economy Minister, Taras Kachka, said on national television, Ukrinform reported on April 19.

"This isn't a government-led initiative, so there's 'light at the end of the tunnel' in our dialogue with the Polish government," Kachka said.

"We've managed to establish a reasonably good understanding between us. However, the root of the problem lies within Poland's social and political landscape. It's a systemic crisis because a faction of the farming community, including those currently blockading the border, are staging protests in different forms, disrupting roads within Poland. The primary issue is their lack of clarity regarding the objectives of their demands."

Read also: 'Stop hurting Ukraine' - Polish PM Tusk asks farmers to end border blockades

He expressed hope that the protests at the Korczowa–Krakovets and Medyka–Shehyni border checkpoints are short-term protest actions. The protests and blockades at the Yagodyn and Rava-Ruska border checkpoints create much more significant problems. This category of protesting farmers does not represent the entire Polish agricultural sector, Kachka said

"After our negotiations three weeks ago with the main associations in Poland, the so-called 'leaders' of the protests noted that they do not negotiate with us because such associations speak on their behalf," Kachka said.

Read also: Polish protesters suspend blockade of Uhryniv-Dołhobyczów checkpoint

"But this is a political issue."

This protest represents a small number of farmers who want a different approach to negotiations. Therefore, this internal Polish situation has no diplomatic solution on our part.

Ukrainian-Polish border blockade

Polish protesters began restricting transport at the border with Ukraine on Feb. 20.

Trucks were blocked at the Medyka–Shehyni, Dolhobyczow–Uhryniv, Zosin–Ustyluh, Korczowa–Krakovets, Hrebenne–Rava-Ruska, and Dorohusk–Yahodyn checkpoints.

Cases of political provocations and spoilage of Ukrainian agricultural products have accompanied the border blockade.

European Parliament Committee supported the extension of duty-free trade for Ukraine on March 7.

Ukraine announced its readiness to restrict trade with the EU on the same day but on its own terms.

Polish farmers went on a major strike on March 20, during which roadblocks and protests took place throughout the country. They completely blocked truck traffic at the Yahodyn and Rava-Ruska checkpoints.

Polish farmers were not allowing trucks from Ukraine to pass through the Yahodyn and Rava-Ruska checkpoints on March 24.

Read also: Polish protesters freeze Ukraine border at three major checkpoints, halting truck traffic

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Read the original article on The New Voice of Ukraine