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New discussions about Ukraine's exports

Нови дискусии около износа на Украйна

The decision of the Trade Commission of the European Parliament to approve the European Commission's proposal to extend the suspension of tariffs and quotas for imports of Ukrainian agricultural products until June 2025 has ignited passions with new force.

Farmer discontent in Europe is growing, and Ukraine has shown that it is willing to compromise if certain conditions are met.

"Ukraine is ready to accept temporary trade restrictions with the EU, provided the bloc imposes a ban on Russian grain imports," Ukrainian Trade Minister Taras Kachka told the Financial Times.

As European farmers protest the EU liberalizing trade with Ukraine, Kiev has said it will agree to new restrictions on Ukrainian agricultural imports if the EU bans exports of Russian agricultural products that still reach the bloc via Belarus and the Baltics countries.

In Poland, a number of political formations understand the problems of farmers and stand firmly behind them.

"We (Poland) cannot destroy our economy to help Ukraine," the right-wing "Confederation" leader said, adding that most of Ukraine's food is produced by huge farms that "have little to do with ordinary Ukrainians and what is happening at the front.

"Kyiv needs to understand some facts," Andrzej Danielak of the Polish Union of Manufacturers told Euractiv Poland recently. "The structure of farms in the European Union is completely different from that of Ukraine, with the EU system historically based on relatively small farms."

"Ukraine cannot demand unlimited access to EU markets because this large-scale farming will destroy European agriculture," Danielak added. "And there are a lot of companies in Poland that are very eager to take advantage of the get-rich-quick opportunity from this."

Ukraine believes the Polish farmers' protests were provoked by Russia, a charge echoed by EU trade commissioner Valdis Dombrovskis. Kiev blamed Moscow for the "attack" carried out by Polish farmers on a train carrying Ukrainian grain last month. Then a wagon overturned, spilling some of its load.

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