EU bans import of four Ukrainian agri products into border EU countries until June 5

3 May 2023 | Masha Belikova

The European Commission has suspended imports of several agriculture products from Ukraine until June 5, it said in an official statement late Tuesday.

The Commission has implemented a ban on the import of key agriculture import products from Ukraine including wheat, corn, rapeseeds and sunflower seeds to the five so-called frontline EU bloc members – Bulgaria, Hungary, Poland, Romania and Slovakia – from May 2 to June 5.

But for the other EU member states, the Ukraine-origin agriculture products are free for circulation and import. As well, The frontlines countries remain opened for export to other EU countries or outside the bloc.

“In parallel, Bulgaria, Hungary, Poland and Slovakia have committed to lift their unilateral measures on wheat, maize, rapeseed and sunflower seed and any other products coming from Ukraine,” the statement said.

The Commission is ready to reimpose preventive measures after the expiration period on June 5 if the “exceptional” situation continues, it also said.

“While addressing concerns of farmers in those Member States neighbouring Ukraine, the measures uphold the EU's strong commitment to support Ukraine and preserve its capabilities to export its grains which are critical to feed the world and keep food prices down, in the face of the huge challenges posed by the unprovoked Russian aggression,” the statement also said.

Prior to that, the European Parliament’s International Trade Committee agreed last week to extend the suspension of EU import duties on Ukrainian exports of agriculture products, processed products, fruits and vegetables for another year to support the country’s economy during the war with Russia.

But the extension is yet to be approved by the European Parliament (MEPs) – a session is scheduled over May 8-11 – and it will be also a subject for approval by the European Council.