Saturday September 30, 2023
Home European Commission Ukraine threatens WTO complaint against EU import ban

Ukraine threatens WTO complaint against EU import ban

Ukraine has called on the EU countries to end the imposed import blockade of agricultural products to five neighboring EU countries. The scheme expires on June 5. Ukrainian Minister of Agriculture and Food Supply Mykola Solskyi hinted in Brussels on Tuesday that Kyiv would go to the WTO with a complaint if necessary.

That temporary import ban was imposed by the European Commission after Poland and Romania began a border blockade to protect their own agricultural sector against an overflow of Ukrainian imports. Brussels promised farmers in those countries compensation and 'legalised' the blockade of Ukrainian agricultural products. Whether that is allowed is doubted by some lawyers.

Thirteen EU countries, including the Netherlands, had asked Agriculture Commissioner Wojciechowski for clarification. This actually included all major agri-exporting countries.

Using figures on imports and exports for 2021 and 2022, Agriculture Commissioner Wojciechowski tried to show that Ukrainian 'exports' to Poland, Romania, Hungary, Slovakia and Bulgaria have increased 'disproportionately', and that the complaints in those countries – so – there was a lot to say.

Solskyi said his country is doing everything it can to make transit through neighboring countries as smooth as possible. He said to wait the EU for the next week and see if things improve in early June. In that case, extension after June 5 may not be possible.

The Ukrainian minister has asked to wait for progress to be made and while he has assured that he prefers to avoid "more difficult situations", he does not rule out the possibility of resorting to the World Trade Organization (WTO).

“This is not the way,” the Ukrainian minister assured the EU-LNV ministers. He pointed out that Russia is still trying in all kinds of ways to hinder Ukrainian exports via the Black Sea.

In line with Solskyi, the ministers of 13 EU countries have expressed “serious concern” over the import ban on imports of maize, wheat, rapeseed and sunflower from Ukraine. They believe that this “leads to differential treatment within the internal market”. 

Agriculture Commissioner Wojciechowski said that the European Commission is not prepared to withdraw the measures now because that would cause major (storage) problems in the five neighboring countries. Harvests are expected in those countries, which also have to be processed, transported and sold. He did say that the European Commission is prepared to review the situation in October.


EU gives Britten one more day for Brexit

The European Union gives Britain one day to come up with workable proposals for a severance arrangement. There must be ...

Italian budget still not in order according to EC

Italy's budget may conflict with the European Union's fiscal rules. The European Commission has asked the Italian minister ...

British first go to the polls in December; Brexit on the longer track

The British Government of Conservatives Prime Minister Boris Johnson is willing to meet the opposition to get support for ...

EU and MO soon for the choice: support for Tehran or Washington

Chancellor Merkel, French President Macron and British Prime Minister Johnson are urging Iran to be cautious about the conflict between ...

Merkel brings UN, Libyans, Putin, Erdogan and EU to peace talks

After discussions with Libyan General Khalifa Haftar, German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas said that Haftar is willing ...

Just in

Dutch consul: strengthen agricultural ties with Ukraine especially now

The Dutch agricultural council in Ukraine, Reinoud Nuijten, believes that Dutch agriculture should already strengthen ties with the Ukrainian agricultural sector...

Glyphosate in EU agriculture: so far only Germany and Austria are against it

Austria has now also publicly spoken out against the extended authorization of glyphosate in pesticides in European agriculture. This announcement comes shortly...

Hundreds of Spanish cows have already died due to contagious cow fever

In Spain, hundreds of cows have died in recent weeks from an epizootic hemorrhagic disease EHD. That contagious cow fever is related to...

Court of Audit: EU subsidy for the wine industry hardly leads to more 'green' wine

When subsidies are awarded to the European wine industry, little attention is paid to environmental effects and hardly any sustainability conditions are attached. That...

Two variants of bird flu plague South Africa's poultry: worst ever

The South African poultry sector has been affected by two variants of bird flu for several weeks. The sector warns of possible chicken shortages...