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1 Dec, 2023 15:00

German car industry concerned by Ukraine blockade – Bild

Anxiety is rising among the country's auto manufacturers as the border protest by Polish truckers shows no sign of abating 
German car industry concerned by Ukraine blockade – Bild

The buildup of freight at the Poland-Ukraine border due to the ongoing protest by Polish truckers and farmers is a growing cause for concern in Germany’s automotive industry, Bild reported on Thursday. Thousands of truckloads of goods headed to the EU are stuck in queues that the German tabloid described as being 35km in length. 

Bild cites sources at German car manufacturers that are concerned over their supply lines being cut off. For example, numerous suppliers produce their wiring harnesses in Ukraine. Already facing serious problems since the beginning of Russia’s military operation, the sudden logistics bottleneck has reportedly even forced some car manufacturers to halt production.  

The round-the-clock blockade of border crossings is a protest against the EU’s decision to relax the bloc’s regulation on Ukrainian transport companies in 2022. In early November, the trucker protest was joined by Polish farmers unhappy over the influx of cheap Ukrainian grain that was driving down local crop prices.   

However, Kiev’s position remains unchanged. “We are not discussing the termination of the agreement on the liberalization of freight transport between Ukraine and the EU,” Bild quoted a Ukrainian Foreign Ministry spokesman as saying.  

Polish Minister of Infrastructure Andrzej Adamczyk stated in a government press release on Wednesday that he had reached out to his Ukrainian counterpart, Aleksandr Kubrakov, to discuss the issue. 

With an EU Transport, Telecommunications and Energy Council (Transport) meeting upcoming on December 4, talks will touch on the blockade and the EU’s legislative changes that precipitated it. Adamczyk concluded his press release by saying that it’s “necessary to evaluate the effects that resulted in the implementation of the agreement between Ukraine and the EU, as well as changes in its content necessary to maintain the stability of the transport market.”