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5 Jun, 2023 12:27

EU extends Ukrainian grain ban – minister

The regulation will block deliveries to five member-states until September
EU extends Ukrainian grain ban – minister

The European Commission has extended a ban on imports of Ukrainian grain to Poland, Slovakia, Hungary, Romania and Bulgaria until September 15, Reuters reported on Monday, citing Poland's agriculture minister, Robert Telus.

The previous EU ban on Ukrainian wheat, maize, rapeseed, and sunflower seed to the five member states is set to expire June 5.  

"We have received from the EC a draft of a new regulation banning the import of 4 products to the 5 countries," Telus wrote on Twitter. "The effective date provided for in the draft is September 15 this year."

"It's a draft but I hope it will come into force from tomorrow," he added.

In May, the European Commission imposed "exceptional and temporary preventive measures on imports" of the four items from Ukraine to ease the impact of plummeting prices in neighboring EU countries.

According to the European Commission, the measure was enacted to address the concerns of farmers in Poland, Hungary, Romania, Slovakia and Bulgaria that suffered substantial losses due to the influx of Ukrainian grain.

Last year the EU suspended customs duties on all agricultural produce from Ukraine for one year, to support the nation's economy. However, the glut of cheap grain has left EU producers struggling against what they view as unfair competition.

Exports of Ukrainian crops that the EU described as "critical to feed the world and keep food prices down" were initially destined for Africa and the Middle East, but instead got stuck in Eastern Europe, endangering the livelihoods of local producers.

On May 31, the EU agriculture commissioner, Janusz Wojciechowski, said it was necessary to extend the restrictions until at least the end of October, despite fierce opposition from Ukraine.

For more stories on economy & finance visit RT's business section

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