Poland will not let Ukrainian grain inflow after Sept. 15, minister says

Telus said that "this coalition of five countries... is not against anyone, it is primarily for our border farmers, but also, if we build these tools well, they will also serve the European Union and will also serve Ukraine." Albert Zawada/PAP

Grain from Ukraine will not flow to Poland after the September 15 ban expiry, Poland's agriculture minister said after meeting his EU counterparts.

On May 2, the European Commission (EC) allowed five countries close to Ukraine - Poland, Hungary, Slovakia, Bulgaria and Romania - a temporary ban on imports of Ukrainian wheat, corn, rapeseed and sunflower seeds. Last month, it prolonged the ban until September 15.

On Tuesday, Robert Telus attended a meeting of the EU Agriculture and Fisheries Council in Brussels to present a joint position of the five EU 'frontline' member states seeking an extension of the ban.

"I hope the September 15 (ban- PAP) will be extended. There were many voices that supported us on this issue," he said after the talks.

Telus said that the five countries also have a lot of support from the Baltic states and that Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia have proposed the use of their ports to transport grain from Ukraine.

Telus said that "this coalition of five countries... is not against anyone, it is primarily for our border farmers, but also, if we build these tools well, they will also serve the European Union and will also serve Ukraine."

He added that he hoped Poland would not have to use unilateral solutions, announced earlier by the Polish prime minister, Mateusz Morawiecki.

Last Wednesday, Morawiecki said that Poland will not open its borders to Ukrainian grain even if the EU does not agree to extend the ban. His declaration followed the signing of a joint position earlier in the day by the agriculture ministers of the five "frontline" countries on extending the ban until the end of 2023.

"Of course, if there is a need, we will have to (close the borders to Ukranian grain - PAP) because the interests of our farmers are the most important for us," Telus said.

"But I'm hoping this will work itself out without using these tools," he added.

"I want to say once again after Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki that if needs be, grain will certainly not flow to Poland after September 15," Telus declared.

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