23.01.2024 16:49

Ukrainian associations call on European colleagues for an open dialogue regarding the import of Ukrainian agricultural products

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23.01.2024 16:49

The Ukrainian Agrarian Confederation together with the key agricultural associations led by the public union "All-Ukrainian Agrarian Forum" appeal to COPA COGECA, as the leading voice of European agriculture, to start an open dialogue with Ukrainian colleagues on urgent issues of agricultural trade, instead of lobbying to block the import of key Ukrainian agricultural products by the European Commission.

As stated in the letter, the large-scale reorientation of Ukrainian exports and transit supplies of agri-food products to the EU from 2022 was not a matter of choice. This was a sad consequence of Russia's cynical campaign to block Black Sea shipping lanes, attack agricultural warehouses and logistics facilities, and destroy crops in the southern and southeastern regions of the country.

Ukrainian farmers and agricultural producers highly appreciated the strong support of COPA COGECA and other leading European agricultural associations, which made efforts to launch solidarity paths between Ukraine and the EU, as well as the decision to offer Ukraine additional autonomous trade preferences.

These steps turned out to be a lifesaver for the Ukrainian economy in 2022-2023, as revenues from Ukrainian agricultural exports accounted for 61% ($21.9 billion) of the total export of goods from Ukraine for 10 months of 2023.

At the same time, Russian aggression not only led to a reduction in the area of arable land by 5.5 million hectares in 2022-2023 and a loss of production of grain and oil crops in Ukraine by 27 million tons in 2023 compared to 2021, but is also aimed at sowing chaos and political conflict between Ukrainian farmers and their EU counterparts.

"It is extremely important that we do not fall into this trap. As a future member of the EU, Ukraine is deeply committed to the process of adapting its legislation and institutional practices to EU rules and standards. For its part, Ukraine hopes for openness to dialogue and the search for joint solutions in order to strengthen the methods of combating today's crises, which will be based on mutually beneficial cooperation," the appeal emphasizes.

In view of the above, UAC and other agrarian associations of Ukraine call on COPA COGECA to enter into an open dialogue with their Ukrainian colleagues before pushing the EU institutions to any unilateral measures that could cut off the sources of survival of the Ukrainian economy in conditions of war.

The Ukrainian agricultural community is ready for any form of dialogue - whether with the help of special consultations at the business level, or with the participation of officials of agricultural bodies of Ukraine, the EU and member states. Representatives of the agricultural sector of Ukraine propose to hold the first session of this dialogue in March of this year in Brussels.


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