At the moment, we have a situation where the Prime Minister says that he will unblock some channels and exports. The first thing you do when your house is flooded is you don’t take a rag and don’t pour out the water, but turn off the pipe. There is no other way. Grain imports must be closed, said Marek Sawicki from PSL on TVN24. He referred to talks at the ministry with farmers. “It’s an agreement without an agreement,” he said.
The guest of the program on TVN24 “You get up and know” was Marek Sawicki from PSL. He commented on the situation after the agricultural round table with the participation of the Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Henryk Kowalczyk.
This is an agreement without an agreement. Because farmers, of course, prepared points, because those prepared by Minister Kowalczyk were unacceptable to them. Our side was represented by Adam Nowak, the head of ZMW and at the same time vice-president of the European Center for Young Farmers. There was also the head of the Agricultural Chambers, Wiktor Szmulewicz. They very strongly raised the issue of import deposits, he emphasized in the conversation.
PSL: introduction of import deposits
He explained that “when it exploded war in Ukrainegrain prices skyrocketed.” – We had the Black Sea ports blocked and it was necessary to launch the transit of Ukrainian food through Europe to the countries of Africa and the Middle East – he reminded.
– The borders were unlocked, grain, rapeseed and other food products began to flow into Europe, but unfortunately the so-called transit channels were not created to take it to the Baltic Sea and export it further. We said in July, when the Black Sea was opened, we submitted a repair bill to the Sejm as PSL, in which we proposed the introduction of entry deposits – he noted.
Sawicki said he was wondering what the National Food Group was doing in this situation. – There’s a company operating on Eewarr grain. I ask, how much did this company buy from farmers in the previous campaign, i.e. in 2022? And how much percent of its filling area did it cover with this grain? – added.
– According to my data, at least three quarters were covered with grain of private companies trading on the Polish market. The space is leased, not bought out, as it was supposed to be – he pointed out.
“I don’t have such a strong bandwidth in Poland”
He added that in 2021, before the war in UkrainePoland exported a record 4.5 million tons of grain.
– In 2022, only 3.8 million tons of grain. At the same time, about 2 million tons of corn, almost a million tons of rapeseed, about a million tons of wheat come from Ukraine. So naturally, if we have our production at 35 million tons and consumption at 29 million tons, we had to export 6 million tons of our grain and an additional 4 million tons from Ukraine. I don’t have such a strong bandwidth in Poland. I talked about it with President Kowalczyk in September last year – he stated.
He stressed that “we are not able to transport this amount of grain through our ports.”
– At the moment we have a situation where the Prime Minister says that he will unblock some channels and exports. The first thing you do when your house is flooded is you don’t take a rag and don’t pour out the water, but turn off the pipe. There is no other way. Grain imports must be closed, Sawicki assessed.
Agreement between the ministry and farmers
On Wednesday evening, after a meeting with farmers at the headquarters of the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, the deputy prime minister told journalists that all farmers’ losses due to the effects of the war in Ukraine were expected to be counted. – Such analyzes will be made, the point is to prove these losses – he assured.
– There is a will to apply to the European Commission for further compensation for these losses, but they must be counted and documented – said the head of the Ministry of Agriculture.
When asked about the compensation amount of PLN 10 billion expected by farmers, Kowalczyk emphasized that the amount of PLN 1.2 billion proposed by the government is “estimated” and “already on the table”.
Main photo source: TVN24