Illustration - Photo: wikipedia

Agriculture minister discusses extension of Ukraine grain ban with Slovak counterpart

Agriculture Minister Istvan Nagy met his Slovak counterpart, Jozef Bires, in Bratislava on Tuesday, and they agreed that the European Union ban on certain Ukrainian grain products should be maintained at least until the end of 2023, the ministry said.

The European Union’s ban on the import of certain Ukrainian grain products, introduced earlier this year to protect the markets of neighbouring countries from a glut, will expire on September 15.

“Ukrainian grain must be channelled back to its original markets, and so our primary goal continues to be to ease transit” to vulnerable countries, Nagy said. Hungary has earmarked resources to increase railway capacities near the Ukrainian border, he said.

Slovakia is facing challenges similar to those of Hungary, Nagy said. On the cusp of the sunflower and sweetcorn harvest, warehouses are full and grain markets are “at a standstill”, he said.

High transport costs are one of the main causes of the problem, he said. “We continue to propose a progressive, EU-financed transport system along with a prolonged ban” on Ukrainian products, he said.

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