Inflow of goods from Ukraine. What plans does the Polish government have?

Luc Williams

Head of the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development he met there with farmers who had earlier, as part of a nationwide protest, in a cavalcade of approximately 200 tractors and combines, traveled from nearby Cekanów, including national road No. 62. During the meeting in Słupno, among others, president of the National Council of Chambers of Agriculture, Wiktor Szmulewicz, and representatives of the Independent Farmers’ Trade Union “Solidarity”.

Even before the meeting, Siekierski mentioned the talks held in Brussels with EU representatives in recent days, which concerned, among others, excessive inflow of Ukrainian goods to the European market, which – as he emphasized – is most felt by the countries that border Ukraine. He recalled that regulations in this area were adopted for the first time in June 2022.

“Significant limitations”

“We do not want to agree to the conditions of liberalization that have existed so far. We want significant restrictions to be introduced on the inflow of sensitive goods. This applies to grain, sugar, poultry, eggs and soft fruit, because Poland and Polish farmers will not be able to withstand the competition with Ukrainian agriculture, where there is a huge scale of production,” said the Minister of Agriculture.

Siekierski pointed out that “not only that Polish marketale European market is already flooded with Ukrainian goods.” He added that this was the reason for agricultural protests in Germany, Romania and France, and even in countries outside the European Union, such as Switzerland and the UK. Britain.

“This unification of European farmers is a certain kind of message, even a form of opposition and a demand also towards European institutions to verify the scale of market opening,” said the head of the Ministry of Agriculture.

He added: “We all know that we need to help Ukraine, but this opening cannot continue as it is.”

Protest of Polish farmers

Siekierski added that as part of the protest of Polish farmers, there are also a number of comments regarding the principles of conducting the common agricultural policy. “According to the new distribution and strategic plan, which was prepared and adopted by the old government, subsidies are 30 percent lower. lower. Instead, eco-schemes are introduced, the implementation of which is a heavy burden for farmers. Many of these obligations cannot be fulfilled,” he noted.

Referring to the “excessive bureaucracy of the eco-scheme system” raised by protesting farmers, Siekierski emphasized that this demand requires EU changes, including at the level of the European Parliament. “Changing, moving away from eco-schemes or simplifying them takes time. And I will ask farmers for this time,” he added.

Minister of Agriculturethat the difficult situation in agriculture, not only in Poland, is also related to the profitability of agricultural production. As he noted, “inflation and an increase in production costs resulted in very low or no profitability.” “Farmers in the farm-to-fork chain are the weakest link because they have no influence on the prices of production inputs, fertilizers and plant protection products. They also have no influence on the prices of the products they produce and sell,” Siekierski added.

“This protest is not only for farmers. He is also largely for city dwellers. We are fighting for everyone, not only for the inhabitants of the countryside, because it is really getting worse, more and more difficult, everything is getting more expensive,” said the organizer of the agricultural protest in Słupno, Krzysztof Czerwiński from NSZZ Rolników Indywidualnych “Solidarność”.

As he emphasized, Polish farmers feel very strongly about the lack of profitability of production, because “even when the crop is born, there is nowhere to sell it.” “We can’t go back. If we go back, we can say goodbye to most of our farms. It’s like that in France, it’s like that in Germany. A lot of people lose their farms and leave. I would not like farmers to stand in line for benefits at Labor Offices,” added Czerwiński. (PAP)

Author: Michał Budkiewicz


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