The leaders of five EU member states, Hungary, Poland, Slovakia, Bulgaria and Romania, sent a joint letter to the president of the European Commission on Wednesday, asking the Brussels body to take action on the issue of Ukrainian grain that flows into Europe duty-free and causes damage to local farmers.
In her reply, Ursula von der Leyen emphasized: unilateral measures applied instead of a common European approach only benefit Ukraine’s opponents, and may also undermine the EU’s unwavering support for Ukraine.
He stated: the union is dealing with the “concrete, but unintentional” consequences of the unexpected surge in Ukrainian imports in the affected countries. The European Commission previously provided a quick financial support package of 36.3 million euros to the most affected farmers, and now it is preparing to present a second financial support package worth 100 million euros, planned to be provided to the affected farmers, he informed.
The president of the commission confirmed: the preventive measures will offset the deterioration of the situation of EU producers in the case of certain products, including wheat, corn, rapeseed and sunflower seeds.
“Market access for Ukrainian goods and the humanitarian solidarity corridors opened by the EU on July 22 last year are crucial for Ukraine’s resilience against Russia’s war. Ukraine’s exports must continue to reach world markets, including developing countries,” he said.
Von der Leyen also stated: the Brussels board will work even more intensively to facilitate the transit of the agricultural goods in question, both in the case of other member states and partner countries outside the EU, which – as he said – will ease the pressure on Ukraine’s neighboring countries in the short term.