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EC introduces restrictions on Ukrainian grain

Restrictions on the import of Ukrainian grain and other produce into Poland and four other eastern EU states came into force on Tuesday afternoon, a spokesman for the European Commission (EC) told the Polish Press Agency.

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Miriam Garcia Ferrer said the measures would take effect immediately.

The EC’s decision follows an agreement between Brussels and Poland, Slovakia, Bulgaria, Romania, and Hungary.

The states, which previously blocked the entry of Ukrainian grain because a glut of it had led to depressed prices on domestic markets, are in turn committed to lifting their countries’ blockades.

“The measures concern only four agricultural products – wheat, maize, rapeseed and sunflower seed – originating in Ukraine. They aim to alleviate logistical bottlenecks concerning these products in Bulgaria, Hungary, Poland, Romania and Slovakia,” the EC wrote in a press release.

Easing tensions

“The EC regulations regarding imports of agricultural produce from Ukraine meet the expectations connected with the easing of tensions on our domestic market,” Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki told reporters in Vilnius later on Tuesday.

Morawiecki said that the EC’s decision was the result of “very intensive negotiations with both the Ukrainian side and the EC.”

The agreement

Under the agreement the ban on imports for the domestic market remains in place but produce destined for other countries will be allowed to transit to the eastern countries.

The EU will also provide EUR 100 million in support for Bulgaria, Hungary, Poland, Romania and Slovakia.

EC head Ursula von der Leyen said she was convinced the present agreement will “preserve both Ukraine’s exports capacity so it continues feeding the world, and our farmers’ livelihoods.”

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