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Agriculture Minister welcomes deal with EC on Ukraine grain imports

The European Commission has considered the requests of Hungarians farmers and a European Union level agreement has been signed concerning the ban on Ukrainian grain imports, the minister of agriculture said on Friday.

The ministry cited Istvan Nagy as saying that Brussels had given in to pressure by the five member states of Hungary, Poland, Slovakia, Bulgaria and Romania, and recognised the severity of a market crisis that developed in the region. By applying an extraordinary protective measure, it will allow an import ban on several agricultural products from Ukraine to these countries as long as the current extraordinary market situation persists, he added.

The agreement applies to four products: wheat, maize, rape seeds and sunflower seeds, he said. The extraordinary ban in Hungary will end when a a new measure to be introduced by Brussels enters force, which will guarantee the continuity of the import ban, he added.

It has been confirmed that the European Commission would propose extraordinary support of 100 million euros for the farmers of states that border Ukraine, to be distributed equally between them.

Nagy also said that the market disturbances will cease when Ukrainian grain can again reach the target countries in Africa and the Middle East on traditional routes.

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