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Hungary Bans Imports of Ukrainian Farm Products

Trade

Hungary is banning imports of Ukrainian grain, oilseed, and other farm products until June 30 to allow time for a "rethink" of European Union measures that have resulted in a glut on local markets, Agriculture Minister István Nagy said on Saturday, according to a report by state news wire MTI.

Exemptions for Ukrainian farm products from customs duties and quotas have flooded neighboring countries with cheap grain and oilseed, as well as large volumes of poultry, eggs, and honey, making it "impossible" for farmers in Hungary and other Central European countries to sell their products, Nagy said.

Farm sector players expect the European Union to ensure fair market conditions, he added.

The minister met his peers coming from countries neighboring Ukraine last Friday and said that they were in “full agreement” on maintaining a united front to press for restrictions on exemptions from customs duties on the imports of agricultural products from Ukraine.

Nagy called for quotas to be reintroduced for wheat, maize, sunflower, rapeseed, and soybeans. The ministers are also asking the European Commission to buy unsold grain grown and stored in member states bordering Ukraine for humanitarian purposes, he added.

The ministers will send a joint letter with their latest recommendations to the EC and discuss them at the next meeting of the Agriculture and Fisheries Council, the Hungarian agriculture minister noted..

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