WARSAW (Reuters) - European Agriculture Commissioner Janusz Wojciechowski would support curbs on trading with Ukraine if Poland proposed such a move, he said on Thursday, amid anger among some European farmers over an influx of cheap Ukrainian grain.
Ukraine, one of the world’s largest grain exporters, had its Black Sea ports blocked following Russia’s February 2022 invasion and found alternative shipping routes through European Union states Poland and Romania.
Logistical bottlenecks mean large quantities of Ukrainian grains, which are cheaper than those produced in the EU, have ended up in central European states, hitting prices and sales of local farmers.
“If the Polish government requests trading curbs with Ukraine obviously I will support that proposal,” Wojciechowski told reporters in Brussels.
He spoke after the European Commission said it had approved a 56-million-euro ($61.1 million) aid package for farmers in countries bordering Ukraine. Poland will receive 30 million euros as part of the package.
“We are already preparing the next aid package and that will be for a bigger sum,” Wojciechowski said.
On Wednesday, Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki said he wanted the EU to use all tools at its disposal to limit the amount of Ukrainian grain entering the EU market.
Morawiecki said he had agreed with the leaders of several countries bordering Ukraine to write to European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen to demand action.
Wojciechowski said countries affected by Ukrainian grain imports would have to agree a united position, which he would then support.
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Reporting by Alan Charlish and Marek Strzelecki; Editing by Mark Potter
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