Hungary Presses for Exention of Ukraine Grain Ban

Crops

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Hungary wants the EU’s ban on domestic sales of Ukrainian grain to be extended in the five EU member states bordering Ukraine after the current measure ends on Sept. 15, Prime Minister Viktor Orbán’s chief of staff told a briefing on Thursday.

“Hungary will ask the EU to extend the ban from September 16,” Gergely Gulyás said, adding Hungary was ready to reimpose a national import ban if the EU does not extend the measure.

The European Union in May allowed Bulgaria, Hungary, Poland, Romania and Slovakia to ban domestic sales of Ukrainian wheat, maize, rapeseed and sunflower seeds, while permitting transit of such cargoes for export elsewhere.

This ban is set to expire on Sept. 15. Poland has said it would not lift the ban even if the EU does not agree on its extension.

Before the EU measure, the central European countries imposed unilateral bans early this year on Ukrainian grain imports to protect their domestic producers, after a surge in Ukrainian grain exports into the five states in 2022 and early 2023.

The current EU deal to protect farmers in the five states is due to expire next month.

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