Ukraine halts legal action against Slovakia amid grain import drama

Ukraine halts legal action against Slovakia amid grain import drama |

Legal action against Slovakia, including before the World Trade Organisation and a ban on imports of Slovak agricultural products into Ukraine, will be dropped after online negotiations in which both countries agreed to set up a grain trading system based on issuing and monitoring licences.

During their virtual meeting on Wednesday, the online negotiations were conducted between Solskyi and Slovak Agriculture and Rural Development Minister Jozef Bíreš. Bíreš characterised the online discussion as productive, with both parties agreeing to establish a grain trading system based on the issuance and monitoring of licences.

“Until the launch of this system and its successful testing, the ban on importing four commodities from Ukraine, approved by the Slovak government, will remain in effect,” Minister’s Kristína Juričková (TASR) from the Ministry.

The Slovak ban on the import of Ukrainian wheat, corn, sunflower, and rape seeds will be valid until the end of the year.

Ukraine announced a lawsuit against the EU countries after Slovakia, Poland and Hungary decided to block grain imports from Ukraine even though the European Commission decided not to extend its temporary import ban to Ukraine’s five EU neighbours.

The national embargo on importing Ukrainian grain is supported by practically all political parties running in the crucial 30 September snap election.

Robert Fico, leader of frontrunner Smer, is campaigning on ending military support to its eastern neighbour, he said on Tuesday that he would extend the ban on the import of agricultural commodities from Ukraine if Smer is in government. Fico called the Ukrainian political representation “insincere, greedy and rude”.

The reinstated ban also has the support of political parties which support arming Ukraine, including poll runner-up Progressive Slovakia.

The Slovak government has also recently decided how it will use the money allocated from the  EU CAP crisis reserve among the farmers who were most affected by the import of cheap Ukrainian production. €5 million, supplemented by €10 million from national resources, will be distributed only among wheat growers.

(Karol Slovík |

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