EU criticizes Poland, Hungary over suspension of Ukrainian grain imports

EU criticizes Poland, Hungary over suspension of Ukrainian grain imports

It is 'crucial' to coordinate all decisions within bloc in 'such challenging times,' says EU spokeswoman

By Ata Ufuk Seker

BRUSSELS (AA) - A "unilateral move" by Hungary and Poland to temporarily suspend Ukrainian grain imports is "unacceptable," a European Union official said Sunday.

In a statement, Miriam Garcia Ferrer, a spokeswoman for trade and agriculture at the European Commission, called on the two countries to step back from the move.

"We are aware of Poland and Hungary's announcements regarding the ban on imports of grain and other agricultural products from Ukraine. We are asking the relevant authorities for further information that will allow us to assess these actions,” she said.

“In this context, it should be emphasized that trade policy falls within the exclusive competence of the EU, and therefore unilateral action is unacceptable. In these difficult times, it is crucial to coordinate and agree all decisions within the EU, added Ferrer.

Farmers in Poland and Hungary have long sought an end to cheap grain imports from Ukraine.

The announcement by the two countries of the suspension of Ukrainian grain imports is an attempt to appease farmers amid an oversupply of grain in their domestic markets that has caused local prices to crash.

Farmers in Poland have held many protests against imports of Ukrainian grain.

On Saturday, the two countries decided to impose a temporary ban on grain and food imports from Ukraine.

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