In Tuesday’s address, Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki announced that Poland will extend an embargo on Ukrainian grain, regardless of the European Commission’s decision.
“The commission’s decision opened the door to the import of food products from Ukraine, which subsequently led to the outbreak of an agricultural crisis. What was supposed to be just transit turned out to be a mechanism that flooded the Polish market with cheaper grain from Ukraine,” said Morawiecki.
The Polish prime minister reminded that in April, Poland, along with four other countries in the region, imposed a ban on the import of grains from Ukraine, and only then did the European Commission take a position favorable to Poland.
“It was our pressure that led to the EU embargo. It expires in three days,” Morawiecki stated.
The prime minister noted that negotiations have been ongoing for weeks to extend the EU ban, but so far they have not been successful. Therefore, Poland, regardless of the European Commission’s decision, will impose its own restrictions.
The EU ban on grain imports from Ukraine is in effect until Sept. 15. Countries neighboring Ukraine have seen an excessive amount of imports of cheap agricultural products that have led to market destabilization. In addition to Poland, the countries of Hungary, Romania, Bulgaria and Slovakia also want to extend the ban.
More than a month ago, the Polish government announced that if the European Commission’s decision is unfavorable, Poland will itself introduce an embargo, just as it did in the spring.
The Polish prime minister emphasized that the embargo on grain is not aimed at the citizens of Ukraine.
“It’s enough to remember that Poles have opened their homes, their hearts. We have prepared shelter here for millions of women and children from Ukraine, but we cannot agree to have the entire Polish market destabilized as a result of uncontrolled imports into Polish territory,” said Morawiecki.